History | Afro-Latin America
H665 | 29386 | McGraw

Above class open to graduates only

This course examines the impact of the settlement of people from
Africa in the Americas.  Along with causing countless deaths and
distorting the development of numerous African societies, the
Atlantic slave trade profoundly reshaped the demographic and
cultural composition of the New World.  In language, food, and
music, among many other cultural attributes, African peoples
indelibly contributed to the cultures to which they were forcibly
brought.  However, this course goes beyond merely detailing African
contributions to the Americas by addressing a set of related
questions regarding the African Diaspora: How did the experience of
slavery and the resistance to slavery transform African individuals
and cultures as well as American cultures?  How did the African
settlement of the Americas and the struggle for freedom shape
people's thinking about Africa and about being African outside of
Africa?  How did the rising consciousness of widely dispersed people
of African descent throughout the Americas, from Canada to
Argentina, create the possibilities of new ties and creative
activity between black people from very disparate cultural milieux
and with very different personal histories?  We will examine these
questions and related issues through readings of critical texts by
historians and anthropologists.  In doing so, we will view both the
struggles of individuals within and the global processes of Diaspora.