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African & African Diaspora Studies Collection

Adeane Bregman

The development of the African and African Diaspora Studies collection follows the research and teaching emphases of the African and African Diaspora Studies Program. At Boston College, AADS is an interdisciplinary program which offers or co-sponsors over 40 courses each year in several disciplines, including history, literature, sociology, philosophy, theology, and fine arts. The libraries collect material relating to African, African-American, and Afro-Caribbean aspects of these fields to support these courses.  Materials in African and African Diaspora Studies are also used by students in the core courses.  The Black Studies program was founded in 1969.  Currently, students may minor in African and African Diaspora Studies or design an African and African Diaspora Studies major as an Independent Major.

Some of the research interests of the faculty include: economic, social, political and diplomatic history of the Caribbean; history of Sub-Saharan Africa; Christianity in Africa; history of the African Diaspora; black social and political thought; history of African-American women; black studies in higher education; narrative theory in African American literature; literature of the diaspora; post-colonial studies in the Caribbean; jazz and gospel music.

There has been a tremendous growth in print, audiovisual and electronic materials in this area. The collection includes International Index to Black Periodicals, Black Studies Center, and Oxford African American Studies Center databases, essential to teaching and research. Chicago Defender and African-American Newspapers: Nineteenth Century  provide full- text access to primary sources. The Transatlantic Slave Trade: A Database on CD-ROM is a recent addition in the O'Neill Library Media Center.  | View selected resources ยป

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Interdisciplinary Elements of Subject Area
African and African American Diaspora Studies is interdisciplinary per se.  Scholarly works and works written for the general reader are being published in every discipline.

zFormats and Types of Materials
Formats collected include print, electronic, microform, and audiovisual. Types of materials include monographs, serials, and reference works including major indexes, abstracts, catalogs, bibliographies, yearbooks, dictionaries, encyclopedias, research guides, and directories.

Materials relating to black studies published in English are the primary focus of the collection.  Materials published in French, German, Italian, Spanish, or Creole may be purchased if an English translation is not available.

Geographic Area Coverage
The Caribbean and Africa are emphasized in addition to North America.  Studies of people of African descent in other areas of the world (Europe, Asia, South America) may also be collected.

Time Periods
Time periods are less significant than subject or geographic considerations.

Dates of Publication
Current imprints are emphasized. Modern editions of classics as well as reprints of significant works are also emphasized.  Older publications may be purchased to fill in gaps in the collection, as replacement copies, or to reflect a new research interest in the program.