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University Programs

Antioch College: Cultural and Interdisciplinary Majors: African/African-American Studies
Antioch's program focuses on the full range of experiences of people of African descent. It entails a rigorous attempt to outline the parameters of those experiences, first by investigating the foundations of African ways of knowing and the social construction of knowledge in the African context. They offer a decent selection of courses such as Introduction to Drum and Dance of West Africa and the Caribbean and African Philosophy. Most of their classes focus on African American culture.

Boston College: History Department
While this college supposedly has an Africa/African Diaspora field, it is virtually non-existent. It is extremely difficult to find any classes on Africa. A big disappointment.

Brown University: Africana Studies Program
Much of this program's course deals with African-American history as well as Caribbean History. There is still, however, much offered in African history and culture. This program focuses on theoretical, historical, and artistic exploration of the culture, philosophy, and literature of Africa and the African Diaspora, embracing North, Central, and South America and the Caribbean and their historic and present linkages to continental Africa.

Brown University: Department of Anthropology
This is worth checking out to see what is offered for those students interested in Africa but not necessarily majoring in African studies. The same goes for the Brown Political Science Department.

California State University: San Jose African Studies Program
This program is not as large or detailed as the on in Dartmouth, offering only a departmental minor. It includes courses from anthropology, art, African American studies, history and political science. The interdepartmental structure of this minor will enable students, while pursuing degrees in specific disciplines, to concentrate their efforts more efficiently upon the African continent. I called the director of African Studies, Professor Harris, numerous times but he never returned any of my calls =(

California State Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo
While this university does not have an African studies program, there is an Ethnic Studies program offered. This program only focuses on different races in the US [i.e. Mexican Americans, Chinese American, Native American, etc.]

Colorado College Courses
Downloadable pdf files on courses in each department.

Dartmouth University African & African American Studies Department
This program is designed to provide all students at Dartmouth with an understanding of the historical, economic, political, social, and artistic experiences of people of African ancestry. Dartmouth offers an even wider selection than Santa Clara University. Some of these classes include Africa: Ecology and Development, Indigenous African Religions, and History and Popular Culture in Africa .

Harvard: African Studies
Harvard is, unsurprisingly, another college that offers such a program. The committee on African Studies at Harvard is a multidisciplinary group of scholars appointed to coordinate teaching and research on Africa within Harvard’s departments and faculties. It is primarily concerned with the planned development of African studies in the University as a whole. Since it is also the Committee’s goal to advance knowledge and understanding of African peoples throughout the University, it sponsors lectures, seminars, conferences, films, and exhibitions on Africa. Check out Harvard’s history selections. Some classes include Modern Africa from 1850 to the Present, West Africa from the Earliest Times to 1800, Rethinking Gender in African History, and Health, Disease and Ecology in African History.

Georgetown University: Sociology and Anthropology Department
This Georgetown department offers courses such as The Politics of Representation in Africa and the Middle East and African Cultures in the Americas.

Georgetown University: International Affairs
A university reknowned for the Walsh School of Foreign Service, Georgetown lives up to its name. It offers courses such as African Art and Material Culture, African International Relations, African Military Conflict, Contemporary South Africa , and much more.

New York University: Africana Studies
This program is devoted to the interdisciplinary and multi-continental study of modern black identities, culture, literature and politics. The program's two main areas of concentration are Pan-African History and Thought and Black Urban Studies. In regards to Africa, they only offer Modern African and COM FLD SEM: POLITICAL SEM IN AFRICA (?). Not bad, but not good.

Santa Clara University: History Courses
Offers an Introduction to African History and Cultures.This university offers beyond the basics with other courses such as Colonial Africa, Independent Africa, Modern Middle East and North Africa, Women in Islamic and African Societies, and Special Topics in African History. This wide selection of courses is most likely due to the complaints from students at SCU a few years ago.

University of Arizona: Africana Studies
This university's program is "a rapidly expanding program committed to comprehensively educating people about the breadth and depth of the African experience in the United States, Africa, and the rest of the African Diaspora." They are currently working on developing a major in Africana studies to go with the existing minor. The courses offered at this time are nowhere near as extensive or detailed as those of Georgetown or UCLA. U of A also exchange programs American University in Cairo, University of Nairobi, and University of Zimbabwe.

University of California, Berkeley: History
A wide selection of courses offered in their history department.

University of California, Los Angeles: African Languages
UCLA offers elementary, intermediate, and advanced courses in African languages such as Zulu, Swahili, Yoruba, Bambara, Hausa, Amharic, Wolof, Tigrinya, and Bantu.

University of California, Los Angles: World Arts and Cultures
Check out descriptions for courses such as African Popular Arts, Dance in Africa and African Diaspora, and World Arts Practices in Sub-Saharan Africa and Diaspora.

University of California: History
Large department with numerous classes, but just the basics on Africa [i.e. Introduction to Civilizations of Africa and Introduction to African History]

University of Chicago: Social Sciences
Their history department offers Modern Africa and France and North Africa. The political science department offers Comparitive Politics: Middle East/Northern Africa. There is not much else offered.

University of Texas, Austin: Center for African and African-American Studies
The center was created in June, 1969, in response to The University's African American community and its supporters who requested a program at UT-Austin that concentrated on the experiences and history of African Americans. While the program has always included the study of Africa, the Center has expanded its focus to include more in-depth coverage of Africa and the African Diaspora throughout the world. University of Texas students may earn a B.A. in Ethnic Studies with a concentration in African and/or African-American Studies. They offer a healthy selection of courses.

High School Social Studies Links

George Washington High School
(Denver, Colorado)

West Green School District
(Waynesburg, Pennsylvania)

James Madison Memorial High School
(Madison, Wisconsin)

Jefferson High School
(Lafayette, Indiana)

Franklin High School
(Reisterstown, Maryland)

Kennedy High School
(Cedar Rapids, Iowa)

Littlefield High School
Littlefield, Texas

Oswego High School
(Oswego, New York)

Melbourne Central Catholic High School
(Brevard County, Florida)[World History-->Africa]

Liberty High School
Liberty, South Carolina

**Lynbrook High School
(San Jose, California)

**Palo Alto High School
(Palo Alto, California)

**Bellarmine College Prepatory
(San Jose, California)

**Los Gatos High School
(Los Gatos, California)

**Monta Vista High School
(Cupertino, California)

**Saratoga High School
(Saratoga, California)

**Presentation High School
(San Jose, California)

**denotes local high school

Education Links

California 7th Grade Social Studies Standards
New standards from 1998 that include study of the sub-Saharan civilizations of Ghana and Mali in Medieval Africa.

Colorado Department of Education
Downloadable PDF file. Colorado has two options: standards or expectations. Why? I do not know. There is no specific mention to the study of Africa or even the word "Africa" except to refer to African immigrants who come to America. Not encouraging. Click here to go straight to the PDF file.

Connecticut Curriculum & Instruction Socials Studies Site
Downloadable PDF files. (Click on Common Core of Learning and Curricular Goals and Standards pg 6-10.)These standards are, once again, quite vague. They have goals such as "demonstrate an understanding of the concept of culture and how different perspectives emerge from different cultures" and "analyze the historical roots and the current complexities of relationships among nations in an increasingly interdependent world."

Florida Course Descriptions for Basic Education
Downloadable PDF files for grades 6-8 and grades 9-12. Amazingly, the Florida Department of Education has created an African History course. The goal: "Understand the development of African civilizations within the context of history by examining connections to the past to prepare for the future as participating members of a democratic society. Students use knowledge pertaining to history, geography, economics, political processes, religion, ethics, diverse cultures, and humanities to assess problems related to the multi-faceted issues that will face African peoples in the 21st century." There is also another course at the middle school/junior high level called Geography: Asia, Oceania, & Africa. This course's goal is to "acquire and organize information about the places, people, and culture in Asia, Oceania, and Africa to develop a sense of where they are in time, space, and culture and reinforce their own personal and social identity. Courses such as these are very encouraging in the search for African literature/history in school curriculum.

Illinois Social Studies Standards
Does not mention specifics like California's site. Is Africa included?
Political Systems
No specific mention of Africa.
No specific mention of Africa.
No specific mention of Africa.
No specific mention of Africa.
Social Systems
No specifics.

Michigan Curriculum Framework
Downloadable PDF file or click on Social Science Content Standards. There are standards such as "All students will describe and explain the causes, consequences, and geographic context of major global issues and events." Does that mean they addressed the genocide in Rwanda in 1994? Another standard: "All students will describe, compare, and explain the locations and characteristics of places, cultures, and settlements." Does this mean they offer courses such as African History? The site does not mention specifics.

New Hampshire Social Studies Framework
Most of the information given is standards that are pretty vaguely written. One of the more specific ones on world history mentions "the study of ancient, medieval, and modern Europe (Western civilization) with particular emphasis on those developments that have shaped the experience of the entire globe over the last 500 years and those ideas, institutions, and cultural legacies that have directly influenced American thought, culture, and politics." Unfortunately, that most likely excludes Africa. Once again, economic value and bias comes into play. There is also however a brief mention of "basic understanding of the distinctive characteristics of major contemporary societies and cultures of Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe, and the Middle East." There is a considerable number of standards dedicated to European history.

New Jersey Social Studies Standards
Thumbs up to New Jersey for this: " School districts are encouraged to define the balance among materials from Western, Asian, African, and other world cultures in each of these periods. Furthermore, several suggested themes are included among the history standards (6.3 through 6.6) to enhance and enrich the study of history." Check out the New Jersey Framework for Social Science by clicking here.

New York State Education Social StudiesStandards
Very unspecific, but very PC sounding.

Oregon Social Science Standards
Downloadable PDF files [Content Standards]. Standards mention in World History section the study of "how European colonizers interacted with the indigenous population of Africa" and the "major consequences of imperialism in...Africa at the turn of the century." Better than most states, not as good as some others.

Utah Social Science Course Descriptions
Another state with vague standards that sound very PC.

Circulation within the Santa Clara County Library System

Book Title Author Total Number of Uses Number of Copies Reading List Book
Things Fall Apart Achebe, Chinua 971 29 Yes
The House Gun Gordimer, Nadine 388 10 No
No Longer At Ease Achebe, Chinua 8 1 No
Disgrace Coetzee, J.M. 266 10 No
The Bride Price: A Novel Emecheta, Buchi 31 1 No
The Famished Road Okri, Ben 66 3 No
The Wedding Coovadia, Imraan 26 5 No
July's People Gordimer, Nadine 151 5 No
Home Ground Freed, Lynn 18 1 No
Cry, the Beloved Country Paton, Alan 1173 27 Yes
Too Late the Phalarope Paton, Alan 39 6 No
Master Harold and the Boys Fugard, Athol 61 7 Yes
The Graves Are Not Yet Full: Race, Tribe, and Power in the Heart of Africa Berkeley, Bill 7 4 N/A
African Decolonization Wilson, Henry S. 4 1 N/A
African Journey Chiasson, John 51 5 N/A
Man in Africa Turnbull, Colin 23 3 N/A

Book Title Author Total Number of Uses Number of Copies Reading List Book
Exodus Uris, Leon 423 15 Yes
Night Wiesel, Elie 1734 52 Yes
The Count of Monte Cristo Dumas, Alexandre 1513 38 Yes
Les Miserables Hugo, Victor 1253 38 Yes
Ulysses Joyce, James 519 16 Yes
House of Spirits Allende, Isabel 1937 29 Yes
The House on Mango Street Cisneros, Sandra 1819 43 Yes
Crime and Punishment Dostoyevsky, Fyodor 1525 37 Yes
Doctor Zhivago Pasternak, Boris Leonidovich 805 20 Yes
The Cairo Trilogy: Palace Walk, Palace of Desire, Sugar Street Mahfuz, Najib 555
The Soul of Rumi Rumi, Maulana 31 5 No
Oliver Twist Dickens, Charles 2190 42 Yes
The Good Earth Buck, Pearl 2512 31 Yes
The Joy Luck Club Tan, Amy 4820 40 Yes
Siddhartha Hesse, Herman 1499 41 Yes
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