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Undergraduate Program

african and african diasopra studies

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Contacts

  • Director: Rhonda Frederick, 617-552-3717
  • Assistant Director: Richard Paul, 617-552-4938
  • www.bc.edu/aads

Undergraduate Program Description

The African and African Diaspora Studies Program (AADS) considers the history, culture, and politics of Africans on the subcontinent and African-descended peoples in the U.S., the Caribbean, South America, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. Covering vast historical periods and geographies, African and African Diaspora Studies acquaint students with the multiplicity and diversity of the African Diaspora and the world in which we all live. Using an interdisciplinary and comparative approach, the program draws on a broad range of methodologies in English, History, Sociology, Philosophy, Theology, Communications, and Theatre.

Central Themes

To get the most out of an AADS minor, students are encouraged to organize their courses around the central themes of globalization, intersectionality, or social justice.

Globalization

Globalization is as old as the trade in African slaves. Patterns of travel, labor, trade, commerce, and resource extraction have shaped the experiences of African-descended peoples and the peoples they have encountered. Selected courses explore the connections between various geographic regions, cultural traditions, and historical developments that have defined globalization.

Intersectionality

Race is defined by various identity categories and social locations such as gender, class, color, ethnicity, region, nation, age, sexuality, political ideals, and spiritual beliefs. Intersectionality reminds us that race is not a monolithic or homogenous category of human experience.

Social Justice

The history of African and African-descended peoples has been defined by the struggle for social justice as the fight for racial equality, the fight against discrimination, sexism, homophobia, and class exploitation. In resisting enslavement, segregation, patriarchy, imperialism, and colonialism, by striving to overturn discrimination in housing, healthcare, employment, religious institutions, and families, African and African Diasporic peoples have undertaken drives for social emancipation that have expanded the meaning of democratic ideals.

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Minor Requirements—18 credits (or more)

Required Courses:

  • AADS1110 Introduction to African Diaspora Studies—3 credits
  • AADS6600 Senior Seminar (or the equivalent)—4 credits
  • Four additional courses (clustered around a theme)—we recommend that minors take AT LEAST two courses of three or four credits before taking AADS6600 Senior Seminar

AADS1110 Introduction to African Diaspora Studies familiarizes students with the major issues and methodologies involved in studying the African Diaspora. AADS6600 Senior Seminar is an intensive reading and writing course designed to assist students in synthesizing their minor experience.

To affirm and specify our minor’s selected Central Theme, we suggest that their four additional courses reflect a particular thematic focus. Some possible themes are:

  • Cities and Urban Life
  • Economics of Inequality
  • Gender and Sexuality
  • Globalization and Development
  • Intellectual and Philosophical Traditions
  • Migration and Immigration
  • Music and the Performing Arts
  • Political Systems and Grassroots Protest
  • Popular Culture and New Media
  • Spirituality and Social Protest

Additionally, students may devise their own thematic foci, in consultation with AADS Director or AADS Advisor.

Contact us at 617-552-3238 or check our website at www.bc.edu/aads.

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Core Offerings

The Program offers several courses that satisfy the Core requirement in Cultural Diversity and one course that satisfies the requirement in Social Sciences.

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