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Haverford College

2011-12 Course Catalog

Areas of Concentration / Programs: Africana & African Studies, 2011-12

Africana Studies DescriptionAfricana Studies FacultyAfricana Studies RequirementsAfrican Studies DescriptionAfrican Studies RequirementsCoursesMagill Library Internet Links

Africana Studies

Africana studies is a developing synthetic field that brings a global frame of reference and a variety of disciplinary perspectives to the study of Africa and the African Diaspora. Drawing on anthropology, economics, history, linguistics, literature, music, philosophy, political science and sociology, the field reflects processes of emancipation, decolonization and development—against a background of international economic change—in Africa itself and in societies worldwide with populations of African origin..

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Africana Studies Requirements

Africana studies is a bi-college program, offered as a minor at Bryn Mawr or as an area of concentration at Haverford. Requirements for the program:

  1. Independent College Programs 101a, "Introduction to African and Africana Studies"/History 102a "Introduction to Africana Civilizations";
  2. five more courses from the list reproduced in the college catalogs, or from a list of new courses periodically approved;
  3. at least one of these courses must deal with the African Diaspora;
  4. a senior thesis or seminar-length essay in an area of Africana studies.

Students are urged to include in their program courses beyond the introductory level that deal with continental Africa and the African Diaspora. Successful completion of the Africana studies minor/concentration is noted on student transcripts at graduation.

Students majoring in a department that requires a thesis satisfy the requirement by writing on a topic approved by his or her department and by the coordinator[s] of the Africana studies program. If the major department does not require a thesis, an equivalent written exercise that is a seminar-length essay is required. The essay may be written within the framework of a particular course or as an independent study project. The topic must be approved by the instructor in question and by the coordinator[s] of the Africana studies program.

In addition to meeting these common requirements, students concentrating in Africana studies at Haverford College must also satisfy a distribution requirement. Of the six courses they take, at least two, but no more than three, must be taken in their home department; the remaining three to four courses must be taken in at least two other departments. Independent College Programs 101a, "Introduction to African and Africana Studies"/History 102a "Introduction to Africana Civilizations", provides a foundation and a frame of reference for advanced work. Students are advised to enter the Africana studies program by taking this course as early as possible and to complete it by the end of the junior year.

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Africana Studies Faculty

At Haverford:
Assistant Professor of Anthropology Jesse Weaver Shipley

At Bryn Mawr College:
Associate Professor of History Kalala Ngalamulume

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African Studies Consortium

Haverford and Bryn Mawr colleges, along with the University of Pennsylvania and Swarthmore College, are members of the African Studies Consortium. The four institutions have established an Undergraduate Center for African Studies, headquartered at the University of Pennsylvania. The center is supported, in part, by the U.S. Department of Education. Consortium resources allow students on the four campuses to pursue a wide variety of interests in African studies.

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African Studies Requirements

Independent College Programs 101a, Introduction to African and Africana Studies/History 102a Introduction to Africana Civilizations, is the foundation course for African studies as well as for the Africana studies program at Haverford and Bryn Mawr colleges. The course is suitable for first-year students, utilizes on-site resources of the four campuses and enrolls undergraduates from all four institutions. This course is co-taught each year by two instructors from different disciplines.

A full African studies program includes the introductory foundation course; study of an African language or languages; study abroad at an African university; and advanced course work on Africa at any of the four institutions.

African languages are regularly offered at the University of Pennsylvania (Yoruba, Hausa, Amharic, Wolof, Swahili) and Bryn Mawr College (Introductory Swahili).

Haverford and Bryn Mawr Colleges regularly sponsor public talks about African issues, featuring visiting African scholars from several disciplines.

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Courses at Haverford College

  • Fall 2011
    • FREN H312 Le Genocide rwandais (1994)
    • GERM H223 Writing Nations: Africa and Europe
    • HIST H114 Origins of the Global South
    • POLS H235 African Politics
    • POLS H270 Tragedy and the Postcolonial
    • RELG H137 Black Religion and Liberation Theology
    • RELG H214 Prophetic Imaginations in the American Tradition
  • Spring 2012
    • ANTH H247 Anthropology and Literature: Ethnography of Black South African Writing 1888-2008
    • ANTH H327 Ritual, Performance and Symbolic Practice
    • ENGL H265 African American Literature
    • POLS H123 American Politics: Difference and Discrimination
    • POLS H345 Islam, Democracy and Development
    • RELG H330 Seminar in the Writings of Women of African Descent
    • SOCL H235 Class, Race, and Education

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Courses at Bryn Mawr College

  • Fall 2011
    • ANTH B200 The Atlantic World 1492-1800: Indians, Europeans, and Africans
    • ANTH B253 Childhood in the African Experience
    • ARCH B101 Introduction to Egyptian and Near Eastern Archaeology: Egypt and Mesopotamia
    • CITY B266 Schools in American Cities
    • COML B388 Contemporary African Fiction
    • EDUC B266 Schools in American Cities
    • ENGL B388 Contemporary African Fiction
    • GNST B103 Introduction to Swahili Language and Culture
    • HART B362 The African Art Collection
    • HIST B200 The Atlantic World 1492-1800: Indians, Europeans, and Africans
    • HIST B235 West African History
    • HIST B336 Topics in African History: Social and Cultural History of Medicine
    • SOCL B266 Schools in American Cities
  • Spring 2012
    • ANTH B341 Cultural Perspectives on Marriage and the Family
    • EDUC B200 Critical Issues in Education
    • ENGL B263 Toni Morrison and the Art of Narrative Conjure
    • ENGL B369 Women Poets
    • GNST B105 Introduction to Swahili Language and Culture II
    • HART B282 Arts of Sub-Saharan Africa
    • HIST B102 Introduction to African Civilizations
    • HIST B243 Atlantic Cultures: Maroon Societies
    • HISTB337 Topics in African History: Social History of Witchcraft
    • HIST B349 Topics in Comparative History: Before European Hegemony
    • SOCL B229 Black America in Sociological Perspective

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