General Education

Interdisciplinary Programs

Academic Units

Academic Programs

Africana Studies

Dr. David Owusu-Ansah, Coordinator Dr. Jacqueline B. Walker, Coordinator
Phone: (540) 568-6743 Phone: (540) 568-3994
E-mail: E-mail:

[Printable Version]

The minor in Africana studies broadens students' world perspectives by enhancing their acquaintance with and understanding of the peoples, issues of identities, and institutions of Africa as well as the African Diaspora in the western hemisphere. The Africana program engages interdisciplinary approaches to understand and to encounter African and the African Diaspora in a global context.

The interdisciplinary character of the program is further enhanced by the fact that courses taken to fulfill program requirements are drawn from several departments. From these course offerings, students will examine and engage with some of Africana studies major contributing disciplines, concepts, methods and topics including the development of new identities.

The minor program in Africana studies is open to all undergraduate students at JMU. Courses taken to complete the Africana studies minor can also be used to satisfy the student's major, as well as General Education requirements.
The Africana studies minor requires:

Required Courses
Credit Hours
GAFST 200. Introduction to Africana Studies
Choose one from each of the following options:
     Option I: Africa
     HIST 263. Introduction to African History
     ANTH 280. Peoples and Cultures of Sub-Saharan Africa
     Option II: African Descendants in the New World
     HIST 355. Afro-American History to 1865
     HIST 356. Afro-American History Since 1865
     ANTH 425. Afro-Latin America

Choose four or more of the following courses, working toward a theme in your selections and not repeating courses from above. Courses not listed but that have Africa or African Diaspora content may be approved.3

     ANTH 391. Study Abroad (must be in Africa or in Diaspora)1,3  
     ANTH 395. Special Topics1,3  
     ARTH 210/GHUM 252. African Experience  
     ARTH 410. African Art I  
     ARTH 412. African Art II  
     ARTH 419. Topics in African Art  
     ARTH 489. Topics in Art and Art History  
     ENG 358. Oral Literature1,3  
     ENG 361. African-American Fiction Writers  
     ENG 362. African-American Poets  
     ENG 412. Special Topics Seminar1  
     ENG 431. Studies in Caribbean Literature  
     ENG 432. Studies in African Literature  
     GENG 260. Survey of African-American Literature  
     GEOG 335. Geography of Africa  
     GHUM 252. Cross-Cultural Perspective: African Culture in the Humanities  
     HIST 263. Introduction to African History  
     HIST 355. Afro-American History to 1865  
     HIST 356. Afro-American History Since 1865  
     HIST 361/HON 200J. Class and Ethnicity in Africa  
     HIST 391. Study Abroad (must be in Africa or in Diaspora)1,3  
     HIST 439. Selected Topics in American History1,3  
     HIST 470. Modern Africa  
     HIST 489. Selected Topics in World History2,3  
     MUS 356. History of Jazz in America  
     POSC 326. Civil Rights  
     POSC 361. Contemporary Problems in International Affairs1,3  
     REL 330. African and African-American Religion  
     SOCI 354. Social and Cultural Stratification  
     SOCI 336. Race and Ethnic Relations  
     SOCI 378. Introduction to Africa-Centered Critical Theory  
     SOCI 379. Africentric Social Thought  
     SOCI 391. Study Abroad (must be in Africa or in Diaspora)1,3  
     AFST 489. Senior Research Experience2 3


1 Course topic and content must focus on Africa and be approved by the program director (s).
2 Research must have an African, African-American or Diaspora focus.
3 Course topic and content must focus on African descendants in the Western Hemisphere and be approved by the program director(s).

In addition to taking these courses, students are encouraged to participate in travel or study programs to Africa, the Caribbean and other relevant areas. Students who want to earn credit hours through participation in an accredited travel/study program are encouraged to do so with the prior approval of the program director(s).


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