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Africana Studies

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

  • Successful completion of 19 credit hours according to the requirements listed below.
  • No more than nine hours from a single discipline.

Required Courses                    

Credit Hours

AFST 200. Introduction to Africana Studies


AFST 489. Senior Research Experience2


Choose five, one of which must be at the 400 level.


AFST 400. Selected Topics in Africana Studies


ANTH 280. Peoples and Cultures of Sub-Saharan Africa


ANTH 391. Study Abroad (must be in Africa or in Diaspora)1


ANTH 395. Special Topics1


ARTH 210/HUM 252. African Experience


ARTH 310. African Art: The Sahara and Northern Sahel


ARTH 312. African Art: Sub-Saharan


ARTH 418. Modern and Contemporary African Art


ARTH 419. Topics in African Art


ARTH 424. Arts of Ancient Egypt


ARTH/AFST 488. African American Art


ARTH 489. Topics in Art History1


ENG 260. Survey of African American Literature


ENG 358. Oral Literature1


ENG 361. African American Fiction Writers


ENG 362. African American Poets


ENG 408. Advanced Studies in African American Literature


ENG 412. Special Topics Seminar1


ENG 431. Studies in Caribbean Literature


ENG 432. Studies in African Literature


GEOG 335. Geography of Africa


GEOG 339. Geography of the Caribbean


HUM 252. Global Cultures: African Culture in the Humanities1


HIST 263. Introduction to African History


HIST 307. The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade


HIST 341. Selected Topics in World History (when appropriate)


HIST 355. African-American History to 1865


HIST 356. African-American History Since 1865


HIST 361. Class and Ethnicity in Africa


HIST 391. Study Abroad (must be in Africa or in Diaspora)1


HIST/ANTH 436. Afro-Latin America


HIST 439. Selected Topics in American History1


HIST 470. Modern Africa


HIST 489. Selected Topics in World History1, 2


MUS 356. History of Jazz in America


POSC 326. Civil Rights


POSC 353. African Politics


POSC 361. Contemporary Problems in International Affairs1


REL 330. Religions of Africa and the African Diaspora


REL 336. African-American Religions


SOCI 336. Race and Ethnic Relations


SOCI 354. Social Inequity


SOCI 391. Study Abroad (must be in Africa or in Diaspora)1


SWA 101-490. Kiswahili



1 Course topic and content must focus on the peoples of Africa and/or the African Diasporas as well as be approved by the program coordinator(s).

2 Research must have an African and/or African Diaspora focus.

Other appropriate courses not listed above may be considered for the minor. Consult with program coordinator.

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 prior approval of the coordinator.