Location: Bowdoin / Africana Studies / Courses / Spring 2013

Africana Studies

Spring 2013

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010. Racism
H. Partridge T 2:30 - 3:55, TH 2:30 - 3:55 Adams-202
Examines issues of racism in the United States, with attention to the social psychology of racism, its history, its relationship to social structure, and its ethical and moral implications.

107. Introduction to African American Literary Fiction
Tess Chakkalakal T 1:00 - 2:25, TH 1:00 - 2:25 Mass Hall-Faculty Room
Introduces students to the literary and historical aspects of the black novel as it developed in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century in the United States. Begins with a consideration of the novels of Charles Chesnutt, Sutton Griggs, and Pauline Hopkins, then examines the ways in which novelists of the Harlem Renaissance—James Weldon Johnson, Nella Larsen, and W. E. B. Du Bois—played with both the form and function of the novel during this era. Then considers how novels by Richard Wright, Chester Himes, and Ralph Ellison challenged and reformed the black novel’s historical scope and aesthetic aims.

202. Demons and Deliverance in the Atlantic World
Laura Premack M 2:30 - 3:55, W 2:30 - 3:55 Adams-114
Seminar. Examines beliefs and practices having to do with evil spirits, demons, and the Devil in Africa, Latin America, the Caribbean, the United States, and Western Europe. The primary focus is exorcism. What is it? How has it been practiced? By whom? Why? The approach to the subject is historical, transnational and diasporic; we examine changes and continuities across the Atlantic over the past 500 years, beginning with cultural encounters between Africans, native Americans, and Europeans during the colonial period and continuing up through the reverse missionization and the new African diaspora of the present day. Readings will include works of ethnography, anthropology, theology, history, personal narrative, and fiction.

209. Introduction to the Study and Criticism of Francophone Literature
Hanetha Vete-Congolo M 1:00 - 2:25, W 1:00 - 2:25 Sills-205
Introduces students to the literary tradition of the contemporary Francophone world. Focuses on major authors and literary movements in historical and cultural context.

219. Visualizing Black Diasporas
Wendy Thompson Taiwo T 10:00 - 11:25, TH 10:00 - 11:25 Mass Hall-McKeen Study
Seminar. How have photographic and visual arts representations in the modern world affected Black diasporic experiences in the Americas and Europe? In what ways do images of Black people in photographs, advertisements, postcards, and informal snapshots determine the material conditions in which they live? Students will critically explore various social contexts and cultural processes that went into the producing of images of and by Black people in the African diaspora. This discussion-based course will require students ?to interrogate ?themes through short writing responses and a final project.??

232. Jazz II: Repertory and Performance
Nyama McCarthy-Brown T 2:30 - 3:55, TH 2:30 - 3:55 16 Station Ave-Dance Studio
Intermediate repertory students are required to take Dance 231 (same as Africana Studies 235) concurrently. A continuation of the principles and practices introduced in Dance 231. Attendance at all classes is required. Grading is Credit/D/Fail. One-half credit.

235. Jazz II: Technique
Nyama McCarthy-Brown T 1:00 - 2:25, TH 1:00 - 2:25 16 Station Ave-Dance Studio
Extends students’ technical proficiency by increasing practice in jazz dance styles and intricate combinations; learning dance technique along with the appropriate historical and cultural contexts. Includes vocabulary, and variations of jazz, and focuses on its roots in social dance heavily influenced by African American traditions. Students have the opportunity to embody various jazz styles such as vintage jazz, Broadway jazz, lyrical jazz, and the jazz techniques of Bob Fosse and Luigi. A series of dance exercises and combinations teach jazz isolations, syncopation, musicality, and performance skills. Through this ongoing physical practice, students gain strength, flexibility, endurance, coordination, and style. Includes a performance requirement, and several readings. Attendance at all classes required. Grading is Credit/D/Fail. One-half credit.

236. The History of African Americans, 1619–1865
Patrick Rael M 11:30 - 12:55, W 11:30 - 12:55 Searles-126
Examines the history of African Americans from the origins of slavery in America through the death of slavery during the Civil War. Explores a wide range of topics, including the establishment of slavery in colonial America, the emergence of plantation society, control and resistance on the plantation, the culture and family structure of enslaved African Americans, free black communities, and the coming of the Civil War and the death of slavery.

238. Reconstruction
Patrick Rael T 2:30 - 3:55, TH 2:30 - 3:55 HL-311 (third floor)
Seminar. Close examination of the decade following the Civil War. Explores the events and scholarship of the Union attempt to create a biracial democracy in the South following the war, and the sources of its failure. Topics include wartime Reconstruction, the Ku Klux Klan, Republican politics, and Democratic Redemption. Special attention paid to the deeply conflicted ways historians have approached this period over the years

240. Civil Rights and Black Power Movements in the Making of Modern America
Brian Purnell M 1:00 - 2:25, W 1:00 - 2:25 Adams-406
Examines the political activism, cultural expressions, and intellectual history that gave rise to a modern Black freedom movement, and that movement’s impact on the broader American (and international) society. Students study the emergence of community organizing traditions in the southern black belt as well as postwar black activism in U.S. cities; the role the federal government played in advancing civil rights legislation; the internationalism of African American activism; and the relationship between black culture, aesthetics, and movement politics. The study of women and gender a central component. Using biographies, speeches, and community and organization studies, students analyze the lives and contributions of Martin Luther King Jr., Ella Baker, Septima Clark, Malcolm X, Stokely Carmichael, Angela Davis, Huey Newton, and Fannie Lou Hamer, among others. Closely examines the legacies of the modern Black freedom movement: the expansion of the Black middle class, controversies over affirmative action, and the rise of Black elected officials.

242. Global Pentecostalism: The Roots and Routes of Twentieth Century Christianity
Laura Premack T 2:30 - 3:55, TH 2:30 - 3:55 Adams-114
Seminar. Pentecostalism is a form of Christianity centered on the gifts of the Holy Spirit. Pentecostals speak in tongues, heal, prophesize, see visions, and exorcise demons. By many accounts, Pentecostalism is the fastest growing religion in the world. While its population is difficult to count, current estimates place the world’s total number of Pentecostals at close to 600 million. The vast majority of these Pentecostals are concentrated in the global South: Latin America, Africa, and Asia. The widespread assumption is that Pentecostalism started in the United States in 1906 -- and was taken to the rest of the world by missionaries. Challenging this assumption and exploring other interpretive possibilities is at the center of this course, which will focus on charting the origins and expressions of the global Pentecostal movement with emphasis on its African-American roots and its contemporary African and Latin American expressions.

246. Afro-Asian Encounters: Reading Comparative American Racial Experiences
Wendy Thompson Taiwo T 1:00 - 2:25, TH 1:00 - 2:25 Chase Barn Chamber
Seminar. Surveys a breadth of historical and contemporary encounters between African Americans and Asian Americans in the United States. Begins with the earliest waves of Asian immigration in the mid-nineteenth century and ends with contemporary critiques of Blackness and Asianness in what some call a post-racial era. Students learn how various political, economic, and social shifts have contributed to the racial positioning of Black and Asian peoples in relation to dominant white American culture and to each other and what this means in relation to the stratification of racial identities in America. Readings center on themes of shared experiences with and conflict over labor, community-building, interracial relationships, foodways, popular representations, and public perception.

254. White Negroes
Guy Foster M 2:30 - 3:55, W 2:30 - 3:55 Hatch Library-012
Close readings of literary and filmic texts that interrogate widespread beliefs in the fixity of racial categories and the broad assumptions these beliefs often engender. Investigates “whiteness” and “blackness” as unstable and fractured ideological constructs. These are constructs that, while socially and historically produced, are no less “real” in their tangible effects, whether internal or external. Includes works by Charles Chesnutt, Nella Larsen, Norman Mailer, Jack Kerouac, John Howard Griffin, Sandra Bernhard, and Warren Beatty.

260. African American Fiction: (Re)Writing Black Masculinities
Guy Foster M 11:30 - 12:55, W 11:30 - 12:55 Searles-215
In 1845, Frederick Douglass told his white readers: “You have seen how a man was made a slave; you shall see how a slave was made a man.” This simple statement effectively describes the enduring paradox of African American male identity: although black and white males share a genital sameness, until the nation elected its first African American president the former has inhabited a culturally subjugated gender identity in a society premised on both white supremacy and patriarchy. But Douglass’s statement also suggests that black maleness is a discursive construction, i.e. that it changes over time. If this is so, how does it change? What are the modes of its production and how have black men over time operated as agents in reshaping their own masculinities? Reading a range of literary and cultural texts, both past and present, students examine the myriad ramifications of, and creative responses to, this ongoing challenge.

261. African American Poetry
Elizabeth Muther T 6:30 - 9:25 Sills-109
African American poetry as counter-memory—from Wheatley to the present—with a focus on oral traditions, activist literary discourses, trauma and healing, and productive communities. Special emphasis on the past century: dialect and masking; the Harlem Renaissance; Brown, Brooks and Hayden at mid-century; the Black Arts Movement; black feminism; and contemporary voices. Note: This course fulfills the literature of the Americas requirement for English majors.

283. Literature of the Civil War Era
Tess Chakkalakal T 11:30 - 12:55, TH 11:30 - 12:55 Mass Hall-McKeen Study
Examines literature published in the United States between 1861 and 1865, with particular emphasis on the wartime writings of Louisa May Alcott, William Wells Brown, Frederick Douglass, William Gilmore Simms, Herman Melville, and Walt Whitman. Students also consider writings of less well-known writers of the period found in popular magazines such as Harper’s Monthly, The Atlantic Monthly, The Southern Illustrated News, and Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper.. Note: This course fulfills the literature of the Americas requirement for English majors.

301. Senior Seminar in africana Studies
Brian Purnell M 10:00 - 11:25, W 10:00 - 11:25 Russwurm Ctr - Library
Students conduct intensive research on a major topic in Africana studies that they have explored during the course of their academic experience in the Africana Studies Program. Students required to apply rigorous humanities and social science theories and concepts to African American, African, or African diaspora themes in the formation of their final research projects. Students required to give regular presentations of their research projects to Africana studies faculty and students.