Africana Studies Minor Requirements

2018 - 2019 Catalog

Africana Studies Minor

A minor in Africana studies requires completion of 21 credits. In meeting the requirements of this interdisciplinary minor, a student must use at least nine (9) credits not also used to meet the requirements of any other major or minor.

1. AFCA 130: Introduction to Africana Studies

2. Africa-focused course. One course chosen from among HIST 276, 277, 378; POL 215, 249; and, when appropriate, AFCA 295, ECON 288, 295; FREN 280; HIST 180, 269, 279; POL 288

3. African Diaspora-focused course. One course chosen from among ENGL 366; HIST 236, 259, 260; MUS 221; POL 250; 360; SOAN 228; and, when appropriate, AFCA 295, FREN 344, HIST 180, 269

4. Three additional courses from categories 2 and 3 above and the following courses: ENGL 350; HIST 131, 366; LACS 257; LIT 259; PHIL 242, 243 (POV 243); PSYC 269; and, when appropriate, ECON 280; ENGL 293; FREN 397; LIT 295

5. Capstone Experience: AFCA 403 or a relevant individual project, senior thesis, or honors thesis approved in advance by the Africana Studies program committee and supervised by a member of the program faculty, typically taken after completion of other minor requirements.

  1. Required:
    • AFCA 130 - Introduction to Africana Studies
      FDRHU
      Credits3
      FacultyStaff

      This seminar, taught collaboratively in four discrete modules, introduces students to the issues, debates, and moments which have shaped and continue to shape the broad and complex field of Africana Studies and the multifaceted experiences and aspirations of peoples of African descent. Among other effects, students who take this class gain a broad appreciation of the historical and philosophical context necessary for understanding the specific identities and contributions to world cultures and civilizations of Africans, African Americans, and Africans in the greater Diaspora; and develop thinking, analytical, writing, and collaborative skills as students complete a major project with one or more of their classmates.


  2. Africa-focused course. Take one course from among the following:
    • HIST 276 - History of South Africa
      FDRHU
      Credits3
      FacultyTallie

      This course aims to study the history of the country of South Africa with particular attention to both the uniqueness and the commonalities of its colonial history with other settler societies. Unlike other Anglophone settler colonies, South Africa never reached a demographic majority where white settlers became predominant. Instead, European settlers made fragile alliances against the African and Indian populations in their midst, solidifying a specific form of minority settler rule. This rule was crystallized in the near half-century of apartheid, the legal discrimination of the vast majority of the country for the benefit of a select few. Students emerge from this course as better scholars of a different society and of many of the historic pressures and struggles that are part of the history of the United States.


    • HIST 277 - Speaking and Being Zulu in South Africa
      FDRHU
      Credits3
      FacultyTallie

      "Sanibonani, abangani bami!" ("Greetings, my friends!") Want to learn more about an African language and culture? We spend the first two weeks intensively learning isiZulu, a language spoken by over 10 million people in South Africa. We also learn about the history of the Zulu people in southern Africa, covering topics from colonialism, racial discrimination, gender and sexuality, and music, and we enjoy Zulu music and film. "Masifunde ngamaZulu!" ("Let's learn about the Zulus!")


    • HIST 279 - Africa in the Western Imagination
      FDRHU
      Credits3
      FacultyTallie

      From benefit concerts to AIDS charities to study abroad literature, Africa is everywhere. And yet it is frequently explained only in absence or in suffering. Rather than being a place that is defined by what it is, often Africa is viewed by what it is not, and the term 'Afro-pessimism' has been coined by some to criticize such solely negative depictions of a vast and varied continent. What, then, is 'Africa': a location on a map, a geographical boundary? Who are 'Africans'? What does the idea mean and how is it used? This course draws on literature and popular culture to discuss the very idea of 'Africa' and how the concept has been created, redefined, re-imagined, and (de)constructed in differing times and spaces.


    • HIST 378 - African Feminisms
      FDRHU
      Credits3
      PrerequisiteAt least sophomore standing
      FacultyTallie

      This course critically examines the idea of African feminisms by looking at many different intersections of time, place. and position for African women. This traces multiple ways in which African women have sought to challenge patriarchal roles in both precolonial and (post)colonial contexts. Students leave not with an understanding of a singular or aspirational African feminism but rather with an appreciation of the ways in which African women have and continue to challenge. reframe, and negotiate a variety of social and political positions.


    • POL 215 - International Development
      FDRSS2
      Credits3
      FacultyStaff

      A study of international development and human capability, with a focus on Africa, Asia, and Latin America. The course analyzes theories to explain development successes and failures, with a focus on the structures, institutions, and actors that shape human societies and social change. Key questions include measuring economic growth and poverty, discussing the roles of states and markets in development, and examining the role of industrialized countries in reducing global poverty. The course explores links between politics and other social sciences and humanities.


    • and, when appropriate,
    • AFCA 295 - Seminar in Africana Studies
      Credits3 credits in fall or winter, 4 in spring
      PrerequisiteCompletion of FW requirement

      Students in this course study a group of African-American, African, or Afro-Caribbean works related by theme, culture, topic, genre, historical period, or critical approach. In the Spring Term version, the course involves field trips, film screenings, service learning, and/or other special projects, as appropriate, in addition to 8-10 hours per week of class meetings. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

      Winter 2019, AFCA 295A-01: Seminar in Africana Studies: The Art and Politics of Rap Music (3). Since its emergence in the 1970s, hip-hop culture has changed the United States and the world, with rap music playing a significant role in those changes. Looking at rap as an art form, a political expression, and a commodity, this course studies how, from 1988 to 2018, rap music used end-rhymed verse and sampling to refine black self-expression. Analyzing singles and albums, we explore the socio-historical context out of which the music arose, the diverse creative strategies that its practitioners employed, and the major shifts in the art form's development. Additionally, we think about the eras in rap music's history and the prospects for its future. This course provides a space to meditate on the relationship between cultural products, racial identity, political progress, and economic destiny and, more specifically, invites students to confront the myths and the truths surrounding one of the late 20th century's more controversial artistic permutations. Hill.


    • ECON 288 - Supervised Study Abroad
      Credits4
      PrerequisiteECON 100 or both ECON 101 and 102, instructor consent, and other prerequisites as specified by the instructor(s)

      For advanced students, the course covers a topic of current interest for which foreign travel provides a unique opportunity for significantly greater understanding. Emphasis and location changes from year to year and is announced each year, well in advance of registration. Likely destinations are Europe, Latin America, Africa, or Asia. This course may not be repeated.


    • ECON 295 - Special Topics in Economics
      Credits3
      PrerequisiteNormally ECON 100 or both ECON 101 and 102 but may vary with topic. Preference to ECON majors during the first round of registration. Other majors are encouraged to add to the waiting list after registration re-opens for all class years

      Course emphasis and prerequisites change from term to term and are announced prior to preregistration. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different. A maximum of nine credits chosen from all special topics in economics courses may be used, with permission of the department head, toward requirements for the economics major.

      Winter 2019, ECON 295A-01: The Economy of Brazil (3). Prerequisite: ECON 100 or 101. This course examines economic development in Brazil, with the purpose of identifying the factors that have prevented Brazil from developing the type of economy and standard of living level associated with a North American or European country. Recommendations are made for future policy directions, and implications for other emerging economy countries are examined. The class has three distinct phases. In the first phase, we have four hours of lectures per week. Following this, there is a weekend workshop with distinguished speakers. After the workshop, the research phase of the class begins, with students responsible for contributing to a white paper on the topic of the course. During the research phase, there will be weekly class meeting to discuss progress. Kahn.

      Winter 2019, ECON 295B-01: The Economics of Poverty and Food Insecurity (3). Prerequisite: ECON 100. Household food insecurity has many determinants including socio-economic status, time, the food environment, education, and culture. This course explores the economic determinants of food insecurity and why it persists today. We use readings from economics, sociology, psychology and nutrition to understand various perspectives of food insecurity and, as necessary, cover micro-economic theory and econometric concepts to understand the literature. Periodically, we work in the computer lab using publicly available datasets and Stata to gain tangible coding and data-management skills. Students learn to appreciate economics as a larger discipline, which will assist you in viewing and understanding the world around you. Scharadin.

      Winter 2019, ECON 295B-02: The Economics of Poverty and Food Insecurity (3). Prerequisite: ECON 100. Household food insecurity has many determinants including socio-economic status, time, the food environment, education, and culture. This course explores the economic determinants of food insecurity and why it persists today. We use readings from economics, sociology, psychology and nutrition to understand various perspectives of food insecurity and, as necessary, cover micro-economic theory and econometric concepts to understand the literature. Periodically, we work in the computer lab using publicly available datasets and Stata to gain tangible coding and data-management skills. Students learn to appreciate economics as a larger discipline, which will assist you in viewing and understanding the world around you. Scharadin.

      Fall 2018, ECON 295A-01: The Economics of Race (3). Prerequisite: Normally ECON 100 or both ECON 101 and 102. Preference to ECON majors during the first round of registration. Other majors are encouraged to add to the waiting list after registration re-opens for all class years. A critical examination of the causes and consequences of racial disparities in valued life-course outcomes in America. More than 50 years have passed since the passage of civil-rights and equal-employment-opportunity legislation in the U.S. Nevertheless, racial gaps persist - with blacks lagging whites - on most socioeconomic indicators. The course is divided into four parts: (1) an introduction to the biological and social construction of race; (2) theories to explain racial disparities; (3) an examination of racial disparity in such realms as education, health, wealth, wages, and unemployment; and (4) policies to address racial disparities. In each section of the course, students explore relevant issues through assigned readings, films, and classroom discussion. The course fosters the development and use of critical thinking, effective writing, and oral presentation skills. Student evaluation is based on classroom participation, an examination of concepts discussed, film commentaries, and a term paper. Goldsmith.


    • FREN 280 - Civilisation et culture francophones
      FDRHU
      Credits3
      PrerequisiteFREN 162, FREN 164, or equivalent

      A study of significant aspects of culture and civilization in francophone countries. Topics may include: contemporary Africa, pre-colonial Africa, West Indian history and culture, and Canadian contemporary issues. Readings, discussion and papers in French further development of communication skills.


    • HIST 180 - FS: First-Year Seminar
      FDRHU
      Credits3
      PrerequisiteFirst-year seminar. Prerequisite: First-year standing

      Topics vary by term and instructor.

      Fall 2018, HIST 180A-01: FS: Uncovering W&L's Past HIST (3). First-Year Seminar. Prerequisite: First-year class standing. 180A-01 is a research seminar that will be reading and writing intensive, and focus on the African American past of W&L and other colleges. We will focus solely on archival research and the issues that eastern colleges have dealt with in reclaiming this past. (HU) DeLaney.

      Fall 2018, HIST 180B-01: FS: Plague: A Medieval Pandemic (3). First-Year Seminar. Prerequisite: First-Year class standing only. An exploration of the causes, experiences, and consequences of the disease colloquially referred to as 'The Black Death.' Students develop the core skills of historical inquiry by critically engaging with primary sources and discussing questions such as: How did Europeans explain and respond to the disease? Did their society collapse in the face of such devastation or did it spark the Renaissance? How can we use modern science in our work as historians and what contributions might historians bring to the scientists' bench? By the end of this course, students are able to articulate informed perspectives on these topics, while providing compelling and balanced arguments for their interpretations. (HU) Vise.


    • HIST 269 - Topics in United States, Latin American or Canadian History
      FDRHU
      Credits3-4

      A course offered from time to time, depending on student interest and staff availability, on a selected topic or problem in United States, Latin American or Canadian history. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

      Winter 2019, HIST 269A-01: The Harlem Renaissance and the Jazz Age (3). This class focuses on two separate and simultaneous African-American movements of the 1920s: the Harlem Renaissance and the Jazz Age. Both entailed black proficiency in the arts, and embodied, in 1920s parlance, "The New Negro Movement". It was the period of an African-American cultural revolution centered in Harlem. The movement occurred in other American cities and also in places outside the United States. The Harlem Renaissance and the Jazz Age paralleled the era of F. Scott Fitzgerald's Great Gatsby. It was a period of excitement, hope, glamour, and self-determination. "Little wonder," writes historian Nathan Huggins, "Harlemites anticipated the flowering of Negro culture into a racial renaissance." (HU) DeLaney.

      Fall 2018, HIST 269A-01: Uncovering W&L History (3). Not open to students who have credit for HIST 180 on the same topic. A seminar focusing primarily on Washington College history as it relates to slavery, and placing it within the larger context of local and state history. Student focus intensely on historical methodology and analysis through the use of primary and secondary research. (HU) DeLaney.

      Fall 2018, HIST 269B-01: Indigenous Social Movements (3). An analysis of the role that indigenous peoples have played in the historical formation of nation-states in modern Latin America. First, we examine theoretical approaches to indigenous mobilization more broadly. We then analyze specific indigenous movements in Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Guatemala, and Peru. (HU) Gildner.


    • POL 288 - Supervised Study Abroad
      FDRSS2
      Credits4
      PrerequisiteInstructor consent and other prerequisites as specified in advance

      This spring-term course covers a topic of current interest for which foreign travel provides a unique opportunity for significantly greater understanding. Topics and locations change from year to year and is announced each year, well in advance of registration. This course may be repeated if the topics are different. Offered when interest and expressed and department resources permit.


  3. African Diaspora-focused course. Take one course chosen from among:
    • ENGL 366 - African-American Literature
      FDRHL
      Credits3
      PrerequisiteTake one English course between 201 and 295, and one between 222 and 299
      FacultyStaff

      A focused engagement with the African-American literary tradition, from its beginnings in the late 18th century through its powerful assertions in the 21st. The focus of each term's offering may vary; different versions of the course might emphasize a genre, author, or period such as poetry, Ralph Ellison, or the Harlem Renaissance.

      Fall 2018, ENGL 366-01: African-American Literature: Make a Body Riot: Laughter, Resistance, and African American Literature (3). How does what makes us laugh position us, either as audience or collaborator? What does the intersection of comedy and performance have to show us about identity formation in relation to race, class, and gender? How might laughter—as a release, as a physical expression, as an indicator of one's interior life, or even as a mode of protest—help us better understand many aesthetic, thematic, acoustic, and political aspects of African-American literature? In pursuing answers to these questions, we center recurring themes and genres in the development of African-American literature throughout the 20th century—such as the role of Black literature in society; the intersections of race, class, and gender; the afterlives of slavery; the historical novel; the role of humor in community formation; and the significance of sound, among others. To guide our discussions, we locate each text within its historical-cultural context and make use of critical sources. Authors we might cover include Charles W. Chesnutt, Nella Larsen, Zora Neale Hurston, Langston Hughes, Ralph Ellison, Chester Himes, Fran Ross, George C. Wolfe, Toni Morrison, and Paul Beatty. (HL) Millan.


    • HIST 236 - Afro-Latin America
      FDRHU
      Credits3
      FacultyGildner

      This class examines the intrinsic role that African peoples have played in the historical formation of the geographic and cultural area known as Latin America. We survey the history of African descendant people in the Americas from the forced migration of the Atlantic slave trade to the Haitian Revolution; from the sugar plantation to the city street; from Brazilian Samba in the 1920s to the emergence of salsa music in Spanish Harlem in the 1970s. Topics include slavery, the Haitian Revolution and its legacy, debates on "racial democracy", and the relationship between gender, race, and empire.


    • HIST 259 - The History of the African-American People to 1877
      FDRHU
      Credits3
      FacultyDeLaney

      An intensive study of the African-American experience from the colonial period through Reconstruction. Special emphasis is given to the slave experience, free blacks, black abolitionists, development of African-American culture, Emancipation, Black Reconstruction, and racial attitudes.


    • HIST 260 - The History of the African-American People since 1877
      FDRHU
      Credits3
      FacultyDeLaney

      An intensive study of the African-American experience from 1877 to the present. Special emphasis is given to the development of black intellectual and cultural traditions, development of urban communities, emergence of the black middle class, black nationalism, the civil rights era, and the persistence of racism in American society.


    • MUS 221 - History of Jazz
      FDRHA
      Credits3
      FacultyVosbein

      A study of the development of jazz from its roots in turn-of-the-century New Orleans to contemporary styles. Strong emphasis is placed on listening and recognition of the performers and composers discussed.


    • POL 250 - Race and Equality
      FDRSS2
      Credits3
      PrerequisitePOL 100 or POL 111 or AFCA 130
      FacultyMorel

      Not to be repeated by students who completed POL 180: FS: Black American Politics in Winter 2018. A study of important black figures in American political thought. The course focuses on the intellectual history of black Americans but also considers contemporary social science and public policies dealing with race in America.


    • POL 360 - Seminar: Lincoln's Statesmanship
      FDRSS2
      Credits3
      PrerequisitePOL 100
      FacultyMorel

      This seminar examines the political thought and practice of Abraham Lincoln. Emphasis is on his speeches and writings, supplemented by scholarly commentary on his life and career.


    • SOAN 228 - Race and Ethnic Relations
      FDRSS4
      Credits3
      PrerequisiteAt least junior standing. Instructor consent required
      FacultyNovack

      An analysis of minority groups in America. Theories of ethnicity are examined focusing on the relationship between class and ethnicity, and on the possible social and biological significance of racial differences. Attention is also given to prejudice and discrimination, as well as to consideration of minority strategies to bring about change.


    • and, when appropriate,
    • AFCA 295 - Seminar in Africana Studies
      Credits3 credits in fall or winter, 4 in spring
      PrerequisiteCompletion of FW requirement

      Students in this course study a group of African-American, African, or Afro-Caribbean works related by theme, culture, topic, genre, historical period, or critical approach. In the Spring Term version, the course involves field trips, film screenings, service learning, and/or other special projects, as appropriate, in addition to 8-10 hours per week of class meetings. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

      Winter 2019, AFCA 295A-01: Seminar in Africana Studies: The Art and Politics of Rap Music (3). Since its emergence in the 1970s, hip-hop culture has changed the United States and the world, with rap music playing a significant role in those changes. Looking at rap as an art form, a political expression, and a commodity, this course studies how, from 1988 to 2018, rap music used end-rhymed verse and sampling to refine black self-expression. Analyzing singles and albums, we explore the socio-historical context out of which the music arose, the diverse creative strategies that its practitioners employed, and the major shifts in the art form's development. Additionally, we think about the eras in rap music's history and the prospects for its future. This course provides a space to meditate on the relationship between cultural products, racial identity, political progress, and economic destiny and, more specifically, invites students to confront the myths and the truths surrounding one of the late 20th century's more controversial artistic permutations. Hill.


    • FREN 344 - La Francophonie
      FDRHL
      Credits3
      PrerequisiteThree courses in French at the 200 level
      FacultyStaff

      An analysis of styles, genres, and themes in relation to particular cultural contexts, as represented in literary works written in French by authors from countries other than France. Of particular interest is French language literature from Africa, the Caribbean, and Canada. May be repeated for degree credit if the topic is different.


    • HIST 180 - FS: First-Year Seminar
      FDRHU
      Credits3
      PrerequisiteFirst-year seminar. Prerequisite: First-year standing

      Topics vary by term and instructor.

      Fall 2018, HIST 180A-01: FS: Uncovering W&L's Past HIST (3). First-Year Seminar. Prerequisite: First-year class standing. 180A-01 is a research seminar that will be reading and writing intensive, and focus on the African American past of W&L and other colleges. We will focus solely on archival research and the issues that eastern colleges have dealt with in reclaiming this past. (HU) DeLaney.

      Fall 2018, HIST 180B-01: FS: Plague: A Medieval Pandemic (3). First-Year Seminar. Prerequisite: First-Year class standing only. An exploration of the causes, experiences, and consequences of the disease colloquially referred to as 'The Black Death.' Students develop the core skills of historical inquiry by critically engaging with primary sources and discussing questions such as: How did Europeans explain and respond to the disease? Did their society collapse in the face of such devastation or did it spark the Renaissance? How can we use modern science in our work as historians and what contributions might historians bring to the scientists' bench? By the end of this course, students are able to articulate informed perspectives on these topics, while providing compelling and balanced arguments for their interpretations. (HU) Vise.


    • HIST 269 - Topics in United States, Latin American or Canadian History
      FDRHU
      Credits3-4

      A course offered from time to time, depending on student interest and staff availability, on a selected topic or problem in United States, Latin American or Canadian history. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

      Winter 2019, HIST 269A-01: The Harlem Renaissance and the Jazz Age (3). This class focuses on two separate and simultaneous African-American movements of the 1920s: the Harlem Renaissance and the Jazz Age. Both entailed black proficiency in the arts, and embodied, in 1920s parlance, "The New Negro Movement". It was the period of an African-American cultural revolution centered in Harlem. The movement occurred in other American cities and also in places outside the United States. The Harlem Renaissance and the Jazz Age paralleled the era of F. Scott Fitzgerald's Great Gatsby. It was a period of excitement, hope, glamour, and self-determination. "Little wonder," writes historian Nathan Huggins, "Harlemites anticipated the flowering of Negro culture into a racial renaissance." (HU) DeLaney.

      Fall 2018, HIST 269A-01: Uncovering W&L History (3). Not open to students who have credit for HIST 180 on the same topic. A seminar focusing primarily on Washington College history as it relates to slavery, and placing it within the larger context of local and state history. Student focus intensely on historical methodology and analysis through the use of primary and secondary research. (HU) DeLaney.

      Fall 2018, HIST 269B-01: Indigenous Social Movements (3). An analysis of the role that indigenous peoples have played in the historical formation of nation-states in modern Latin America. First, we examine theoretical approaches to indigenous mobilization more broadly. We then analyze specific indigenous movements in Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Guatemala, and Peru. (HU) Gildner.


  4. Three additional courses from categories 2 and 3 above and the following courses:
    • ENGL 350 - Postcolonial Literature
      FDRHL
      Credits3
      PrerequisiteTake one English course between 201 and 295, and one between 222 and 299
      FacultyStaff

      A study of the finest writers of postcolonial poetry, drama, and fiction in English. The course examines themes and techniques in a historical context, asking what "postcolonial" means to writers of countries formerly colonized by the British. Topics include colonization and decolonization; writing in the colonizer's language; questions of universality; hybridity, exile, and migrancy; the relationship of postcolonial to postmodern; Orientalism; censorship; and the role of post-imperial Britain in the publication, distribution, and consumption of postcolonial literature.


    • HIST 131 - Modern Latin America: Túpak Katari to Tupac Shakur
      FDRHU
      Credits3
      FacultyGildner

      A survey of Latin America from the 1781 anticolonial rebellion led by indigenous insurgent Túpak Katari to a globalized present in which Latin American youth listen to Tupac Shakur yet know little of his namesake. Lectures are organized thematically (culture, society, economics, and politics) and chronologically, surveying the historical formation of people and nations in Latin America. Individual countries (especially Argentina, Brazil, Cuba, Mexico, and Peru) provide examples of how local and transnational forces have shaped the Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking countries of North and South America and the Caribbean, and the cultural distinctions and ethnic diversity that characterize a region too often misperceived as homogeneous.


    • HIST 366 - Seminar: Slavery in the Americas
      FDRHU
      Credits3
      PrerequisiteJunior or senior standing
      FacultyDeLaney

      An intensive examination of slavery, abolition movements and emancipation in North America, the Caribbean and Latin America. Emphasis is on the use of primary sources and class discussion of assigned readings.


    • LACS 257 - Multiculturalism in Latin America: The Case of Brazil
      FDRHL
      Credits4
      FacultyPinto-Bailey

      This seminar studies Brazil as an example of a multicultural society. Students examine the meaning of multiculturalism and related concepts of identity, heterogeneity, and Eurocentrism, not only in regard to the Brazilian context, but also, comparatively, to that of US culture. The course focuses on the social dynamics that have engaged Brazilians of different backgrounds, marked by differences of gender, ethnicity, and class, and on how multiculturalism and the ensuing conflicts have continuously shaped and reshaped individual subjectivities and national identity. Some of the key issues to be addressed in class are: Brazil's ethnic formation; myths of national identity; class and racial relations; and women in Brazilian society. Readings for the class include novels, short stories, poetry, and testimonial/diary


    • LIT 259 - The French Caribbean Novel
      FDRHL
      Credits3
      PrerequisiteCompletion of FW requirement
      FacultyStaff

      A stylistic and thematic study of identity acquisition through exile, marginalization, struggle, reintegration and cultural blending or any other sociologically significant phenomenon reflected in the literary works of the most important post-colonial French West Indian authors. Spawned largely by Aimé Césaire's book-length poem, Notebook of a Return to My Native Land , French Caribbean novels have proliferated since the end of World War II. After taking a brief look first at this seminal poem, the course then focuses analytically on novels written by authors such as Haitian Jacques Roumain, Guadeloupeans Simone Schwarz-Bart and Maryse Condé, and Martinicans Joseph Zobel, Raphaël Confiant, and Édouard Glissant. Several films based on, or pertaining to, Césaire's poem and to certain novels are also viewed.


    • PHIL 242 - Social Inequality and Fair Opportunity
      FDRHU
      Credits3
      FacultyBell

      An exploration of the different range of opportunities available to various social groups, including racial, ethnic and sexual minorities, women, and the poor. Topics include how to define fair equality of opportunity; the social mechanisms that play a role in expanding and limiting opportunity; legal and group-initiated strategies aimed at effecting fair equality of opportunity and the theoretical foundations of these strategies; as well as an analysis of the concepts of equality, merit and citizenship, and their value to individuals and society.


    • PHIL 243 - Martin Luther King Jr.: Poverty, Justice, and Love
      FDRHU
      Credits3
      FacultyPickett

      This course offers students the opportunity to examine the ethics and theology that informed the public arguments about poverty made by one of the 20th century's most important social justice theorists and activists, Martin Luther King Jr., as well as the competing views of his contemporaries, critics, forebears, and heirs. The course asks the following questions, among others: How do justice and love relate to one another and to poverty reduction? What role should religion play in public discussions and policies about poverty and justice? Are the dignity and the beloved community King championed the proper goal of anti-poverty efforts?


    • POV 243 - Martin Luther King Jr.: Poverty, Justice, and Love
      FDRHU
      Credits3
      FacultyPickett

      This course offers students the opportunity to examine the ethics and theology that informed the public arguments about poverty made by one of the 20th century's most important social justice theorists and activists, Martin Luther King Jr., as well as the competing views of his contemporaries, critics, forebears, and heirs. The course asks the following questions, among others: How do justice and love relate to one another and to poverty reduction? What role should religion play in public discussions and policies about poverty and justice? Are the dignity and the beloved community King championed the proper goal of anti-poverty efforts?


    • PSYC 269 - Stereotyping, Prejudice, and Discrimination
      Credits3
      PrerequisitePSYC 114 and PSYC 250 (as co-req or pre-req) or instructor consent
      FacultyWoodzicka

      This course examines cognitive and affective processes involved in stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination. Causes and social implications of prejudice involving various stigmatized groups (e.g., African-Americans, women, homosexuals, people of low socioeconomic status, overweight individuals) are examined. Participants focus on attitudes and behaviors of both perpetrators and targets of prejudice that likely contribute to and result from social inequality.


    • and, when appropriate,
    • ECON 280 - Development Economics
      Credits3
      PrerequisiteECON 100 or both ECON 101 and 102. Preference to ECON majors during the first round of registration. Other majors are encouraged to add to the waiting list after registration re-opens for all class years
      FacultyCasey, Blunch

      A survey of the major issues of development economics. Economic structure of low-income countries and primary causes for their limited economic growth. Economic goals and policy alternatives. Role of developed countries in the development of poor countries. Selected case studies.


    • ENGL 293 - Topics in American Literature
      FDRHL
      Credits3-4
      PrerequisiteCompletion of the FW requirement

      Studies in American literature, supported by attention to historical contexts. Versions of this course may survey several periods or concentrate on a group of works from a short span of time. Students develop their analytical writing skills in a series of short papers. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

      Winter 2019, ENGL 293A-01: Topics in American Literature: Urban, Rural, Frontier: Constructions of Space and Place in 19th-Century American Literature (3). What significance does the notion of "place" hold in America's imagination? How has that conception of place and space consolidated over time? Students of America's history, for instance, learn how Manifest Destiny was a nineteenth doctrine that justified the United States' expansion westward, but what goes into realizing such a monumental task? Infrastructural developments such as the transcontinental railroad, of course, realized this vision in a material sense, but even before this, much was done to imagine and reimagine the space of the Americas as available for the taking. While the nation expanded west, its metropolitan spaces also witnessed massive growth as a result of industrialization. The goal of this course is to examine how writers and other artists imagined these changing spaces and landscapes throughout the 19th century. Writers we cover include: Washington Irving, James Fenimore Cooper, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, Pauline Hopkins, Sarah Orne Jewett, Walt Whitman, Herman Melville, Harriet Jacobs, Thomas Nelson Page, Frances Harper, Charles Chesnutt, and Frank J. Webb. (HL) Millan.

      Winter 2019, ENGL 293B-01: Topics in American Literature: The American West (3). The American West is a land of striking landscapes, beautiful places to visit, such as Yellowstone and Yosemite, and stories that have had a huge impact on the USA and the world, such as Lewis and Clark, the Oregon Trail, Custer's Last Stand, Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show, and Cowboy and Indian adventures galore. This course studies some of these Western places, stories, art works, and movies. What has made them so appealing? How have they been used? We study works by authors such as John Steinbeck, Frederic Remington, Willa Cather, Wallace Stegner, and Cormac McCarthy, plus movies with actors like John Wayne, Clint Eastwood, and Brad Pitt, to see how Western stories have played out and what is happening now in these contested spaces. (HL) Smout.

      Winter 2019, ENGL 293C-01: Topics in American Literature: Protest Poetry (3). What kind of work can poetry do in the world? Students in this class study poetry from the Civil Rights Era, poetry about environmental crisis, and other kinds of verse that try to change minds and hearts, including protest poems, prayers and curses, and poetry in performance. For experimental credit, students also put poetry into action, first by collaboratively organizing a benefit event for the Rockbridge Area Relief Association, then by creating activist projects for causes of their own choosing. (EXP) Wheeler.

      Winter 2019, ENGL 293D-01: Topics in American Literature: Stanley Kubrick & Stephen King (3). This course explores and juxtaposes the novels and films, epic ambitions, dark visions, and cultural rivalry of two of the most popular, influential, and original narrative artists of 20th- and 21st-century America. We closely study most of Kubrick's thirteen feature films, and a representative selection of King's extensive oeuvre, and contextualize these primary texts with relevant biographical, theoretical, and cultural frameworks. Together these primary and secondary works allow us not only to gain a greater appreciation for these artists' individual achievements and larger lifework but also to scrutinize the limitations of expansive ambition in the age of corporatized mass art. (HL) Adams.

      Winter 2019, ENGL 293E-01: Topics in American Literature: Introduction to Graphic Novels (3). This course briefly explores early works in the graphic novel form before shifting to a central focus on 21st-century publications from a range of presses outside of U.S. mainstream comics. Students also read a range of literary theory on the formal qualities of graphic novels and then apply those theories to the analysis of selected works. (HL) Gavaler.

      Winter 2019, ENGL 293F-01: Topics in American Literature: 19th-Century American Gothic Literature (3). Ghosts? Curses? Institutions in varying states of decay? What comes to mind when you think of the word "gothic"? What makes a literary work "gothic," and what differentiates European and American gothics? Why was an appeal to gothic themes an important element during the nineteenth century in the United States? And how did this literature interface with other leading intellectual and artistic movements of the century? Starting from these questions, this course centers recurring themes in nineteenth-century American Gothic literature—such as the fraught divide between rationality/the irrational; puritan anxieties and guilt; fear linked to the unknown, which was often manifested in unexplored territories and frontiers; and serious looks at the unsettling depths of the human experience that challenged ideas about civilized society. Many of these themes were either direct or indirect responses to what was happening at the time: frontier clashes with, and genocide of, Indigenous peoples, slavery, and industrialization. Writers we may cover include: Washington Irving, Charles Brockden Brown, Catherine Maria Sedgwick, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Margaret Fuller, Edgar Allan Poe, Harriet Jacobs, Emily Dickinson, Herman Melville, Charles Chesnutt, and Charlotte Perkins Gilman. (HL) Millan.

      Spring 2019, ENGL 293-01: Topics in American Literature & Culture: Films of Alfred Hitchcock (3). Prerequisite: Completion of the FW requirement. Not open to students who have taken a similar course as ENGL 272 or 372. This course presents an intensive survey of the films of Alfred Hitchcock: it covers all of his major and many of his less well-known films. It supplements that central work by introducing students to several approaches to film analysis that are particularly appropriate for studying Hitchcock. These include biographical interpretation (Spoto's dark thesis), auteur and genre-based interpretation (Truffaut), psychological analyses (Zizek & Freud), and dominant form theory (hands-on study of novel to film adaptations). (HL) Adams.

      Fall 2018, ENGL 293B-01:  Topics in American Literature:  The Literature of the Beat Generation (3).  A study of a particular movement, focusing on the ways in which cultural and historical context have influenced the composition of and response to literature in the United States.  This course examines the writings of such authors as Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, William Burroughs, Anne Waldman, Amiri Baraka, Bob Dylan, Gregory Corso, and Gary Snyder, who wrote starting in the mid-1940s, continuing through later decades, and becoming loosely known as the Beat Generation.  What cultural, literary, historical, and religious influences from the U.S. and other parts of the world have shaped their work?  What challenges did their boldly different writings face, and how did their reception change over time?  What are their themes?  Their notions of style?  What have they contributed to American (and world) life and letters?  The goal of this course is to lay a strong foundation from which such questions can be richly addressed and answered.  (HL) Ball.

      Fall 2018, ENGL 293A-01: Topics in American Literature: Introduction to Literary Editing (3). An apprenticeship in editing for one or more students with the editor of Shenandoah, Washington and Lee's nationally prominent literary magazine. This is a course for anyone interested in editing literary journals, writing for the literary community (blogs, news releases, two book reviews, features, business correspondence) and how both print and on-line journals operate. Often a stepping stone to a publication career, the course involves an introduction to the creation, design and maintenance of WordPress web sites, as well as a survey of current magazines. The course also offers opportunities for each student to practice generating and editing his/her own texts and those of his/her peers. Each student oversees one facet of the journal (Poem of the Week, blog, submissions management, contests, social media), and each makes a presentation to the class on the nature and practices of two other current literary journals. Students work in pairs toward an understanding of the role journals play in contemporary literature and engage in peer editing. (HL) Staff.


    • FREN 397 - Séminaire avancé
      FDRHL
      Credits3
      PrerequisiteThree courses in French at the 200 level

      The in-depth study of a topic in French literature and/or civilization. Recent offerings include: La Littérature francophone du Maghreb; La littérature Beure; La France sous l'occupation; Les femmes et l'écriture au XVIIe siècle; Les écrivains du XXe siècle et la diversité culturelle; L'affaire Dreyfus. Students are encouraged to use this course for the development of a personal project. May be repeated for degree credit when the topics are different.

      Fall 2018, FREN 397-01: Séminaire avancé: Femmes Écrivaines Africaines: S'écrire et Écrire Le Monde (3). Prerequisites: Three courses at the 200 level. While providing an overview of the trajectory of women's writing from its beginnings in the 1960s, this seminar focuses more heavily on the literary endeavors of women from the late '70s to the 21st century. Through representative works from this extended period, we examine how women address such issues as patriarchy, tradition, modernity, the self in society, as well as the question of feminism itself. (HL) Kamara.


    • LIT 295 - Special Topics in Literature in Translation
      FDRHL
      Credits3-4
      PrerequisiteCompletion of FW requirement

      A selected topic focusing on a particular author, genre, motif or period in translation. The specific topic is determined by the interests of the individual instructor. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

      Spring 2019, LIT 295-01: Literary Reflections on National Socialism (3). Prerequisite: Completion of FDR FW requirement. The literature of post World War II Germany that reflects on and attempts to come to terms with the atrocities of the Nazi regime. Readings, discussion, and writing in English. (HL). Crockett.

      Spring 2019, LIT 295-03: Topic: The African Child-Soldier (3). Prerequisite: Completion of FDR FW requirement. Who is a child? Who is a child-soldier? Did the child have a childhood in a home and family before becoming a soldier? What is childhood? How does the definition of childhood (legal or otherwise) jibe with the child's own perception or understanding of his/her place in society? Does s/he return home, and to a family after combat? Are home and family still the same? This course engages these and other questions as they relate to the representation of the child-soldier in African literary texts and in film. In so doing, we interrogate the larger question of agency, victimhood, and the human capacity to transcend adversity, focusing specifically on how the child (or child-soldier) negotiates the meandering road upon which s/he has been thrusted by people and circumstances, with no properly functioning compass. (HL) Kamara.

      Fall 2018, LIT 295B-01: Arabic Literature in Translation: The Arab Spring in Literature and Media (3). Prerequisites: Completion of FW requirement. The year 2011 marked the moment in which demonstrations and sit-ins against tyranny erupted simultaneously throughout the Arab World. Revolutionaries, mostly under the age of 30, demanded freedom of speech, an end to corruption, and the establishment of democratic states. These uprisings, called The Arab Spring, left a strong footprint on Arabic literature and media. This course introduces students to political, social, and economic issues in the Arab World through different literary genres (such as novels and short stories, political satire, movies, music, poetry and social media) that reflect the aspirations, disappointments, and concerns of the Arabs before, during, and after the revolutions. (HL). Hala Abdelmobdy.


  5. Capstone Experience:
  6. AFCA 403 or a relevant individual project, senior thesis, or honors thesis approved in advance by the Africana Studies program committee and supervised by a member of the program faculty, typically taken after completion of other minor requirements.