Sep 15, 2019  
2019-2020 Catalog 
2019-2020 Catalog

Africana Studies

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Africana Studies Faculty
Devyn Spence Benson
Nneka Dennie
Takiyah Harper-Shipman

Africana Studies Affiliated Faculty
Dan Aldridge (Chair) (History)
Laurian Bowles (Anthropology)
Suzanne Churchill (English)
Joseph Ewoodzie (Sociology)
Caroline Fache (French and Francophone Studies)
Brenda Flanagan (English)
Rick Gay (Educational Studies)
Melissa Gonzalez (Hispanic Studies)
Michael Guasco (History)
Gerardo Marti (Sociology)
Ken Menkhaus (Political Science)
Clark Ross (Economics)
Fred Smith (Economics)
Alice Wiemers (History)
Anne Wills (Religion)

Faculty Emeritus
Nancy Fairley (Anthropology)

Major Requirements (A.B. Degree)

The Africana Studies Department requires 10 courses for the completion of the major.  It is highly recommended that students begin their study with AFR 101.  Students must succesfully complete the following major curriculum:

  1. Gateway Course:  AFR 101  - Introduction to Africana Studies
  2. One course:  Methods Courses category
  3. Two courses: Cultural Production and Expression category
  4. Two courses: Historical and Geographical Investigations category
  5. Two courses: Social Thought and Institutions category
  6. One Intellectual History Course:  AFR 300-309 - Major Thinkers in Africana Studies   
  7. Senior Capstone: AFR 495  - Senior Capstone in Africana Studies


  • At least six of the required courses for the major must be taken in the Africana Studies Department at Davidson College.

  • At least two courses in two different geographic regions (North America, Africa, Latin America & the Caribbean)  must be completed.  See course descriptions for geographic region.
  • Courses for the major may also be considered from Davidson-run and approved study abroad programs (i.e., Davidson in Ghana, etc.)
  • For double majors, no more than two of the same AFR-designated or approved cross-listed courses may count towards the Africana Studies major.

Cultural Production and Expression Courses

Historical and Geographical Investigations

Africana Studies Honors

Students who qualify during their junior year with a minimum GPA and an approved research proposal (submitted by May 30 of the junior year) will be eligible to complete a year-long thesis and enroll in a one-credit thesis course (AFR 498 ) by way of which honors in the major can be earned.  This course will be taught as an Independent Study.  Please note that students who write a thesis must still complete the capstone course (AFR 495 ).  To qualify for honors at graduation, candidates must earn an average of 3.5 or above in the major and an overall average of 3.2 or above.  In the case of an exceptional academic record, together with  a thesis of the highest quality, the department may confer high honors.

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