African And African American Studies : Courses

AAS 100 Introduction to African American Studies

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Offers an overview of the major themes, debates, and issues animating the discipline of African-American Studies and an introduction to the social, cultural, and political history of the African diaspora.

AAS 118 Introduction to African American Music

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Provides students with the history and traditions of African and African American music. Introduces students to all the various modes and genres such as spiritual, gospel, ragtime, jazz, rhythm 'n blues, rock 'n roll, soul and hip hop.

AAS 119 Research: Essential Composition Skills

Credits: 1
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Offers instruction in the elements of composition, and helps students improve their writing skills. Focuses on understanding the logic and style of argumentative, descriptive, expository, and narrative writing. Concentrates especially on the arrangement and form of documented and undocumented essays such as book reviews and term papers. Gives attention to the selection, interpretation, and evaluation of source material and to the physical appearance of essays.

AAS 184 Classic Black Prose

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Introduces students to classic writings of blacks in the Western Hemisphere. Readings include autobiographical or semi autobiographical works that focus upon physical and mental servitude and colonialism, migration and liberation struggles in the United States and the Caribbean, specifically.

AAS 230 Topics in African American Studies

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
A specific topic in the interdisciplinary field of African American Studies. Students prepare a bibliographical essay.

AAS 231 Topics in African American Studies

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
A specific topic in the interdisciplinary field of African American Studies. Students prepare a bibliographical essay.

AAS 232 Topics in African American Studies

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
A specific topic in the interdisciplinary field of African American Studies. Students prepare a bibliographical essay.

AAS 233 Topics in African American Studies

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
A specific topic in the interdisciplinary field of African American Studies. Students prepare a bibliographical essay.

AAS 234 Topics in African American Studies

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
A specific topic in the interdisciplinary field of African American Studies. Students prepare a bibliographical essay.

AAS 235 Topics in African American Studies

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
A specific topic in the interdisciplinary field of African American Studies. Students prepare a bibliographical essay.

AAS 236 Topics in African American Studies

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
A specific topic in the interdisciplinary field of African American Studies. Students prepare a bibliographical essay.

AAS 237 Topics in African American Studies

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
A specific topic in the interdisciplinary field of African American Studies. Students prepare a bibliographical essay.

AAS 238 Topics in African American Studies

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
A specific topic in the interdisciplinary field of African American Studies. Students prepare a bibliographical essay.

AAS 239 Topics in African American Studies

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
A specific topic in the interdisciplinary field of African American Studies. Students prepare a bibliographical essay.

AAS 253 Blacks in Films 1

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Examines the various roles of blacks, both in films produced by black and by white filmmakers. The course offers a range of films, including the early silents of the 1920s-1930s, the black films of the sixties and seventies, and contemporary films. Guest lecturers (film stars, directors) discuss informally their roles in films.

AAS 254 Blacks in Films 2

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Beginning in the late 1940s a change in films dealing with blacks became evident. The social consciousness of the post World War II generation had an effect on the values and conditions faced by blacks. The film industry began to reflect this awareness by producing films that addressed social issues. Deals with the reflective films of the last half of the 20th century.

AAS 260 Major Issues in African American Studies

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Overview of the major issues in the field of African American studies. Offered as a series of lectures and assigned readings, this course uses a variety of disciplines to survey the conditions and development of African Americans from the Atlantic slave trade to the present.

AAS 261 African American History

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Surveys the history of African Americans from African origins to the present. The course focuses on the often overlooked but crucial role of African Americans in shaping US and world history. Topics include: West African civilizations, the slave trade and slavery, abolitionism and the Underground Railroad, Emancipation, post-slavery migrations and labor systems, the rise of Jim Crow, the Harlem Renaissance, the Civil Rights Movement and Black Power.

AAS 264 Black Child in America

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Focuses on the great variety of black children's experiences in the United States, including their experiences both during slavery in the Southern country towns and in the emerging "ghettos" in the North. The course also discusses historical development of social service programs such as Aid to Dependent Children and other government policies. It also explores various issues that contribute to the welfare of African American children.

AAS 265 Spiritual and Gospel Music

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
A study of spiritual and gospel which constitutes the musical ensemble that deals with ways African slaves in America coped with hardships of slavery by expressing their dreams and hopes to be free. This was accomplished by using topics involving Biblical characters, folk songs from Africa, the slave American experience. Explores ways in which this tradition of music has been integrated into general American folk traditions of song and dance, well beyond the slave plantations where they originated.

AAS 270 Major Issues in Caribbean Studies

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Provides a social, political and economic overview of the Caribbean. While the course focuses on the twentieth century, it also provides an historical framework for understanding the region. Discussions of that framework and of the geography and economy of the region lay the groundwork for the course. Class sessions are devoted in great degree to social and cultural issues, including ones relating to family, education, literature, religion, and popular pastimes. Our analyses uncover common experiences and identities across linguistic and other boundaries, but space is reserved for particular territories of special historical experience and interest - Haiti and Cuba notably.

AAS 280 Survey of African Studies

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Overview of African history and politics since the continent's contact with Western Europe in the late fifteenth century. Covers the subject matter in three phases: precolonial times, colonialism, and the postcolonial era. We seek to (1) understand the scope and consequences of the Arab and European slave trade in Africa, (2) examine the dynamics of European imperialism in Africa, and (3) offer perspectives on current African problems.

AAS 293 Race, Law, and Society

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Explores that part of U.S. law that has dealt with the human and civil rights of African Americans (and by implication other racial ethnic groups in U.S. society: Asian Americans, Hispanic Americans, Native Americans, etc.) We do this by examining the relevant legislation and U.S. Supreme Court decisions. However, where appropriate, decisions of the Executive branch made under various 'Executive Orders' are also considered. Any understanding and appreciation of U.S. constitutional democracy requires us to acknowledge the powerful role of race in the evolution of this democracy. Consequently regardless of the time period--the lives of all in the U.S. (of whatever color and sex) have been touched by the interaction between law and race. In Part One of the course we concentrate on an area of legal studies called 'Critical Race Theory,' where our concern is to explore the interaction of law and race from the perspective of issues such as culture, history, gender, identity, politics, class, the media, etc. In Part Two we examine the interaction between race and law from the perspective of the historical evolution of democracy in the U.S.

AAS 294 Education of African Americans

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Examines education from the perspective of equality of educational opportunity for African Americans and other racial minorities. Considers both the history of the struggle for equality of educational opportunity by African-Americans and the many dimensions of the struggle today - both inside and outside the classroom. Topics include: Brown v. Board of Education, the Civil Rights Movement, racial perspectives on intelligence, affirmative action, the socio-economic and socio-psychological basis of school achievement, teachers and racial identity, the multi-cultural curriculum, race and ethnicity in higher education, desegregation and re-segregation.

AAS 301 African American Literature: Prose

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
A survey of African American literature from mid-eighteenth century to the present. Explores historical, cultural, and aesthetic influences. Writers include those from the fugitive school, the Harlem Renaissance, the literary mainstreamers, the New Black Arts Movement and the modern Black womanist tradition.

AAS 302 Black Women Writers

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
A study of modern literature by Black women writers, with emphasis on the major traditions, i.e., naturalist, civil rights, the new Black Arts movement, Black womanism, etc. and the writers' contribution to the shaping of modern literary culture. Explores the writers' expressions of political, social, artistic and aesthetic issues.

AAS 305 Song, Sex, and Soul

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Uses the lyrics and rhythms of African American music to examine some of the cultural history of the United States. The examination emphasizes how the lyrics and rhythmic patterns of this music affect our daily lives.

AAS 306 Structure of Urban Policy

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
An introduction to poverty as a major social issue facing urban African-American communities. Uses an analysis of institutional discrimination to develop a comprehensive analysis of Black urban poverty as shaped by race, class, and gender. Topics covered might include surveying of how Black poverty has been analyzed in scholarship and public policy, assessing specific public policies such as Urban Renewal, school desegregation and busing, public housing, and Section 8 housing programs, for their effects on Black poverty, and exploring the special needs of specific poverty populations such as Black children.

AAS 314 Black Philosophy

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Examines the emergence of a philosophical tradition within the African, African-American, and Caribbean context, its relationship to "Western" canons of philosophical inquiry, and its engagements with questions of racial oppression, consciousness and culture, the politics of liberation, and the meaning of freedom. Specific topics addressed vary from semester to semester but may include Black Liberation Theology, Marxism and the Black Radical Tradition, Black Feminist Thought, the Black Self in Slavery and Freedom, and Blacks and Money. We also consider the lives and writing of individual thinkers from throughout the African diaspora including, but not limited to, W.E.B. DuBois, Marcus Garvey, Frantz Fanon, Sylvia Wynter, C.L.R. James, Audre Lorde, Leopold Senghor, Claudia Jones, Stuart Hall, Chiekh Anta Diop, Achilles Mbembe, and Angela Davis.

AAS 315 Ancient African Civilizations

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Provides an intensive examination of humans and society in ancient Africa, stretching back to humankind's evolution and including an analysis of early forms of African state formations. Ancient Africa is cut off from the period of European presence in Africa, marked by the beginnings of the Atlantic Slave Trade. The course features the following themes and topics: (1) Prehistoric ancient Africa; (2) the desiccation of the Sahara and its consequences; (3) Africa and Mediterranean civilizations; (4) Coptic Christianity and the early history of Christianity; (5) Islam and its brush with Christianity in ancient Africa; (6) Africa's ancient state formations; (7) the impact of Arab invasion and occupation on ancient African state formations; (8) the Bantu migration hypothesis; and (9) the mystery of the Great Zimbabwes. All of these lead to an examination of the dynamics of civilizations in ancient Africa, including their failed forms, using Arnold Toynbee's perspectives on the rise and fall of civilizations as a theoretical point of departure.

AAS 320 Research Methods

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Introduces students to the interdisciplinary field of African American Studies, its relationship to other disciplines, and to social science research methodology. Students read the classic literature in the field and prepare annotated bibliographies. Topics covered may include slavery, colonialism, urbanization and migration, gender and gender construction, and intellectual movements.

AAS 326 African-American Political Development

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Introduces students to black political development in the Western Hemisphere, particularly emphasizing the Caribbean area and the socio-political relationships between black West Indians and other black communities in the Western Hemisphere.

AAS 327 Current African Affairs

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Considers major current events in Africa. However, in focusing on current events our approach involves examining the historical roots of these events.

AAS 333 Race, Ethnicity, and Education

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Explores how factors of race and ethnicity affect the relationship between schooling and society in the United States. Among the issues covered are school curriculum, equality of educational opportunity, socialization, power and ideology, school-government relations, and educational reform.

AAS 337 Supervised Research

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: TUT
Grading: Graded (A-F)
A research course designed for students interested in investigating areas of study about Africa Americans and Diaspora Blacks.

AAS 345 American Ethnicities

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Examines the phenomenon of ethnicity as a salient principle of social organization in America. The course seeks also to clarify what is unique about black ethnicity in America, analytically and historically, and to compare African American experiences with those of other ethnic groups.

AAS 355 Race, Class, and Society

Credits: 4
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Considers how the social divisions of race, gender, ethnicity, and class in the United States today influence the functioning of society in terms of politics, economics, culture, and so on. The course also places special emphasis on current and historical African American experiences.

AAS 358 African Diaspora

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
A diaspora is not merely a spreading of a particular people, but literally a forced dispersal, touched off by some great cataclysmic event or process. Africa has experienced no fewer than two such processes (both at the hands of Europe): the slave trade and imperialism (or colonialism). These diasporas have profoundly shaped the world we live in today, though Africa and its diasporas have largely been treated as an afterthought in the study of world history. One major goal of this course is to study the processes of the African diasporas to understand how Africans and their descendants have impacted world history-a world historical agency that has generally been ignored or denied. Another major goal of this course concerns the understanding not so much of the past but of our world today.

AAS 361 Slavery and the Underground Railroad

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Deals with an aspect of American history (roughly 1830-1860) involving the quest for freedom by African slaves who ran away from bondage through an elaborate system of escape routes stretching from the U.S. South to the North and Canada. Labeled the "Underground Railroad," these networks were managed by 'conductors' who helped their 'passengers' (the escaped slaves) move from 'station' to 'station' and to reach freedom in the North. Probes the background history of slavery, the legislative backcloth of the Underground Railroad, its geography of routes, and the biography of its major 'conductors.' Explores the local history of the Underground Railroad of Western New York, including planned visits to its 'stations' in Buffalo, Rochester, and Ontario.

AAS 363 Junior Seminar: Directed Readings

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Pre-requisite: permission of instructor
Type: TUT
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Introduces students to the interdisciplinary field of African American Studies, its relationship to other disciplines, and to social science research methodology. Students read the classic literature in the field and prepare annotated bibliographies. Topics covered may include slavery, colonialism, urbanization and migration, gender and gender construction, and intellectual movements.

AAS 372 Selected African American Writers

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Focuses on an adherence to traditional themes in the African American canon and those writers whose outstanding efforts have continued the evolution of that canon. Discusses the themes of community and freedom and literacy, as well as the trope of black signifying.

AAS 377 Caribbean Literature

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Examines the literature of the Islands within the context of historical, social, political, and economic circumstances that manifest themselves across linguistic boundaries. This seminar is devoted to major prose works written in English or in translation. Includes introductory lectures that examine broader issues relating to Caribbean literature. The class experience is enriched by videos and guest lecturers. The creative prose works are selected with an eye to thematic and conceptual variety.

AAS 386 Male-Female Relationships

Credits: 3
Semester(s): Spring
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Explores the function of various societal traits that dominate a relationship and how religion, education, economic status, family beliefs, racial beliefs, and friends influence the way a couple interacts. There are many struggles in relationships that take on such forms as dominance or subservience, fear or hope, and jealously or acceptance.

AAS 391 Black Family: the Old World and the New

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
An exploration of family life in Africa and the United States. Compares family structure in an agrarian culture and an industrial society. Examines the influences of race, class, religion, and government on the family. Topics also include familial responsibilities of health, education and general welfare.

AAS 392 The Black Church

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Explores the origin and development of the African American church and its role in the sociopolitical and economic organization of African Americans in a comprehensive historical and sociological overview of the African American religious experience. The course examines elements of the black church that have survived from Africa and includes considerations of the black presence in the Bible. It considers in some details the enlarged black church in the post-emancipation era, including its social roles in the economy, education, etc., and its transformation during the great migration of the World War I Era. The course also considers the contribution of black theology to modern black liberation and the Civil Rights movement.

AAS 393 Survey of Black Middle Class

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: LEC
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Simultaneously examines two centuries of black middle class virtues and vices, while each student carries out a self-examination of his/her own middle-class status and/or aspirations. Achieves the second exercise with the aid of interest tests that serve as guides for each student's five-year plan after graduation.

AAS 395 Black Gender Studies

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Introduction to how gender shapes the experiences of women and men of African descent. Emphasis is placed on Black women's experiences in families, at work, with the media, with sexuality and fertility, and with political activism.

AAS 414 Health Problems in the Black Community

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Addresses issues of health and disease in the African Diaspora from the point of view of African people?s biology and culture. Includes African healing traditions in the Caribbean and North America, as well as black responses to modern medical revolutions. Examines selected public health issues in black communities, such as AIDS and homicide.

AAS 415 Black Face/White Forum

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Explores the cultural development of African Americans during the eighteenth, nineteenth, and twentieth century. Requires students to be familiar with the secondary literature on African Americans' history and culture. Also analyzes some aspects of black's social and political life in an urban setting.

AAS 416 Black/White View of America

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Examines how African Americans view themselves and how they view the opportunities available to them. We look at how the supposed differences in the viewpoints of blacks and whites divide American society into the haves and the have-nots, and how the similarities remain a secret hidden by our educational system and mass media.

AAS 417 Black Aesthetics

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Introduces the major images elements of sound, lights, space, and time-motion, and how they are used in film and television to influence perception. The course is designed to provide students with criteria to help them judge and experience media-articulated messages at different intellectual and emotional levels. Analyses and discusses specially selected television and film materials in terms of how media elements can be used to influence perception and emotions. Encourages students to do comparative analyses of different types of mass media communications to discover relevant cultural elements and the principles underlying their uses.

AAS 425 Liberation Struggles of the African Diaspora

Credits: 3
Semester(s): Spring
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Focuses on the movements of people of African descent in search of freedom from colonialism, racial oppression, slavery, and apartheid. Uses a comparative approach to trace evolving programs and conceptions of the freedom struggle across generations and regions. Topics include the Haitian Revolution, the African-America civil rights movement, the South African anti-apartheid movement, and the anti-colonial movements of Africa and the Caribbean.

AAS 460 Black Women in United States History

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Examines the history of black women in the United States from the slave era through the reform movements that occurred after World War II. Focuses on the range of demands placed on black women during the Gilded and Progressive eras - the founding of the National Association of Colored Women in 1896, their participation in the women's suffrage movement, black struggles for liberation in the United States and in the African Diaspora, cultural movement, war, labor force participation, and health. Also explores black women's interaction with male-dominated groups and feminists from other racial and ethnic groups. Students will analyze black women as leaders, their leadership styles and the impact that they have made on constituents.

AAS 461 Special Topics

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
This research and reading seminar each semester explores a specific topic in African American Studies. Topics may include urbanization, women's history, archeology, slavery, civil rights, labor, etc.

AAS 496 Community Internship

Credits: 1 - 5
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: TUT
Grading: Graded (A-F)
Assigns to students a research project with a community-based organization, agency, or center. Much time is spent studying how the agency structures and disseminates its services. Provision for effective research enables the student to participate in the black community and observe the dynamics of community activities and the role of the black community in decision making in government and social agencies and in the development of cultural and economic activities.

AAS 497 Honors Seminar

Credits: 4
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
One-semester course; builds on AAS 363 and culminates in a research project in cooperation with a member of the department's faculty. The Honors Seminar is tutored at a level more advanced than in the B.A. major program. Students complete AAS 464 with an awareness of the discipline's history, its changing foci and relation to other disciplines, its great works and pivotal intellectual figures, and its important research tools and resources.

AAS 498 Senior Seminar: Research Project

Credits: 3
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Type: SEM
Grading: Graded (A-F)
One semester course; builds on AAS 363 and culminates in a research project in cooperation with a member of the department's faculty. Students complete AAS 463 with an awareness of the discipline's history, its changing foci and relation to other disciplines, it s great works and pivotal intellectual figures, and its important research tools and resources.

AAS 499 Independent Study

Credits: 1 - 4
Semester(s): (No information on typically offered semesters)
Pre-requisite: permission of instructor
Type: TUT
Grading: Graded (A-F)
The content of this course is variable and therefore it is repeatable for credit. The University Grade Repeat Policy does not apply.
Students conduct research or a project under the supervision of a member of the department's faculty.

Updated: 13 Nov 2012 06:00:08 EST