The African American Studies Program maintains that the experience and contributions of African Americans are central to American culture as a whole. Interdisciplinary in focus, this minor explores the diverse experiences of African American people from the period of European contact with North America and the beginnings of the Atlantic slave trade to the contemporary moment through the study of history; art, literature, music, and other forms of cultural production; philosophy and religion; and public policy. In particular, the minor provides students with opportunities to interrogate how ideas of racial identity and difference have been constructed and articulated in U.S. culture, what impact those ideas have had, and the diverse ways in which African Americans have endeavored to achieve greater rights and representation. Through the study of African American experiences in their diverse manifestations, students will develop the knowledge, skills, and perspective through which they can meaningfully engage contemporary questions of diversity, inclusion, and social justice.
Additional course information is available in the W&J College Catalog.