On behalf of our community, it is my honor to welcome you to the Department of African-American Studies. Founded in 1994 under the leadership of founding chair Dr. Charles Jones, our department continues to honor the legacy of the protests that ultimately led to the creation of our department. While we certainly honor our past, we are also a forward-looking department with faculty and students that engage the highest aspirations of the discipline.
Our faculty bring to their teaching and research a range of expertise including Black studies, political science, applied anthropology, history, evaluation, mental health, popular culture, and archival research. Further, we distinguish ourselves with award-winning books and documentary films, organizing national conferences and innovative teaching and mentoring practices. In partnership with our amazing affiliate faculty our contributions in these domains is even more impressive.
Our undergraduate and graduate students develop critical lenses to consider the breadth and depth of the global African Diaspora in the past, present and the future. Indeed, our discipline is not limited to what has happened but also considers what is happening and what may (or should) happen in the future.
Our curriculum is dynamic and responsive. In our teaching, we seek to avoid privileging any one experience of the African Diaspora. We work to disrupt inherited hierarchies that reify rather than disrupt injustice. Students that finish our academic programs are activists, attorneys, artists, professors, teachers, entrepreneurs, policy analysts, accountants, media professionals and scholars. Whatever profession they pursue, they bring to bear the critical lens that our department provides. This is consistent with our motto: “Academic excellence and social responsibility.”
Although we are a relatively small department, we invest in an ambitious program calendar. This includes national conferences, university programming and community programming with partners such as the Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture and History. Our programming reflects our commitment to generating dialogue and action beyond the walls of the academy. This would not be possible without our committed and talented leadership team.
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Thank you again for your interest and we hope to see you soon!