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General Courses

Black Studies Program

General Courses

The Curriculum


Introductory Courses


10100: African Heritage and the Afro- American Experience

Introduction to Black “Roots” from ancient Africa to contemporary America as an orientation to the nature of Black Studies emphasizing its relationships to world history, Europe, Asia, the Americas, slavery, Reconstruction, colonization, racism, and their politico-economic and cultural impact upon African descendants worldwide. 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

10200: African Heritage and the Caribbean-Brazilian Experience

Analysis of historical conditions which shaped the lives of African peoples in the Caribbean and Brazil emphasizing cultural continuities, human organization and similarities in global Black experience among Africans on the continent and in the Western hemisphere, vis-a-vis European politico-economic control and cultural impact. 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.


Intermediate Courses


14900: Religion and Survival

An historical analysis of the role of religion and the church in sustaining the survival of Black people within white America. (W) 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

15500: Black Studies and Black Psychology

Derives its unique status from African philosophy which formulates the values, customs, attitudes, and behavior of Africans in Africa and the African Diaspora. Examines, conceptualizes and interprets from an Afrocentric perspective, centered in the history and development of Africa. (W) 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

17100: Roots: Seminar on the Black World Experience

The study of a people involuntarily and forcibly transported from Africa to the Americas. The organizing concepts include African world history, culture and religion, family and genealogy, capitalism and slavery, humanism and communalism, socialization and values, cosmology and philosophical thought. (W) 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

 17600: The Black Revolution

A survey of the forces shaping the current unrest in the world-wide Black community. Movements that project the changed attitude toward being Black for Blacks and non-Blacks. Highlights both the positive and negative reactions resulting from the new self-pride on the part of Black people. (W) 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

20000-20400: Practicum 

Field work experience in various areas of community service and pre-professional work. Hours arranged. One day per week in field and two hour seminar bimonthly. Students are limited to two courses.  3 CR. EACH


Black World Development 


12300: African Politics

The emergence of the modern state structures from colonial Africa. A comparative analysis of colonialism, nationalism and political development of selected African countries.                       (W) 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

12400: National Building and Development in Africa 

A survey of patterns of leadership, ideologies, and political organization in contemporary Africa. The "revolutionary" pattern will be contrasted to the "conservative" pattern in an effort to provide a contextual understanding of the relationship between political attitudes and social problems. (W) 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

12800: The United Nations and New Nations States

The major legal and constitutional problems in international organizations arising in the work of the United Nations with particular reference to decolonization, apartheid, transfer of "appropriate" technology to the developing world, trusteeship questions, peacekeeping functions, human rights, and domestic jurisdiction. (W) 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

21000-21300: African World area Studies

A semester or summer-long course designed to expose selected groups of students to major areas populated by persons of African descent through in-area observation, study, laboratory, and cooperative volunteer work experiences with students and other citizens of the area visited. (W) 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

21000: African Area Studies 

21100: Afro-American Studies

21200: Caribbean studies

21300: Brazilian and Afro-Latin American Area Studies 


Business, Science & Technology


13500: Economic Development of the Black community 

The impact of technology and industrialization on the Black ghetto; the economics of transportation; perpetuation or disintegration of the ghetto; public welfare; municipal services; effects of migration, limited autonomy, and hostile external political and fiscal policies upon continuous underdevelopment. (W) 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

 17500: Science & Technology

Using research methods firmly entrenched in the science, math, engineering, and technology disciplines, students will examine areas of considerable impact on the African Diaspora in 1) health and disease disparities, 2) information technology, 3) urban and environmental Issues, 4) genomics, and 5) natural resource conservation.
3 HR./WK.; 3 CR

31106: Personal Finance & Black Entrepreneurship

 Introduces the key features of capitalism determinative of African American political economy within the cultural context of the U.S. Students will integrate a personalized financial assessment into a practicable business plan. 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.


African American Society 


13200: The Afro-American Child in His Urban Setting 

The sociological, psychological and educational needs of Black children in New York City public and private schools. (Education majors must consult their advisor.)
(W) 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

13400: The Harlem Community 

the origins and ethnic development of the Harlem community: demographic trends, institutions, culture, resources, and the role of Harlem as a training ground for Black leadership. Field learning experiences include visits to historic sites and community landmarks.                      3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

14500: Capitalism and Colonialism in Contemporary America 

White America is described as capitalist and colonialist. Efforts will be made to comprehend the relative importance of the two phenomena for strategies of liberation depending upon the understanding of who and what is the American and America.
(W) 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

14700: The Civil Rights Movement

It is a historical examination of this legendary community via lecture, film and tours. The students tend to get much more enjoyment from the tours when the various locations are placed in a social, political and economic perspective. Invariably during the tours we encounter Harlemites who are willing to devote some time with the students and share their personal reflections. Students must submit weekly assignments based on the texts and a final research paper and oral presentation.  3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

15700: Racism and the American Legal System 

Contemporary legal institutions, their intrinsic race and class biases, the peculiar development and entanglement of the institution of slavery and American jurisprudence, and the effect of the racist application of the American legal system on every facet of the Black experience. (W) 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

18900: Sociopolitical Impact of Race and Racism 

The historical development and contemporary impact of the concepts of race and racism, focusing upon the early attempts at human classification, notions of polygenesis, the biological and social concepts of race, the origins of racism, slavery, sexism, institutional racism, and contemporary polarization. (W) 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

19000: Malcolm X: His Life , Leadership and Legacy

Charismatic, mesmerizing, energetic life. Rise from criminal to international fame. Leadership greatly influenced poor African-American masses, stunned Black conservatives and shocked white America. Black Muslims controversy vis-a-vis civil rights forced him to fight independently. Left legacy of beloved martyr slain in Black struggle.(W) 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

31103: Race and Racism

An examination of the idea of race from biological, sociocultural, and historical standpoints, particularly as it arose in support of the development of western European colonialism and imperialism. Also investigated will be the role of race/racism via-a-vis socioeconomic inequality, gender, class, ethnicity, and sexuality. (W) 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

31601: Black English 

The grammatical structure of Black American English and how it is used in Black culture and the educational system. (W) 3 HR/./WK.; 3 CR.

33000: Afro-American Heritage; 1619 to 1865

A survey of the sociocultural experiences of African peoples in the North American diaspora defining the historical, economic and political origins of the contemporary position of the Afro-American. 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

33100: Afro-American Heritage: 1865-Present

A survey of the Black experience in America, this course will focus upon the major issues, trends, personalities, and literature of the period, the contradictions of Emancipation, and will examine Reconstruction, migration, and exodus, Black Renaissance, the Civil Rights Movement, Black power and nationalism. 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

33300: the Black Woman 

The various contemporary situations and problems peculiar to Afro-American women in the community and in American society. Entails a study of such institutions as marriage, family, childrearing practices, religion, politics and business. Attention also given to how she is projected in literature and theater. A comparative study of African and Caribbean women will be presented. 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.


Latin American and Caribbean Cultures


16100: Caribbean and Brazilian Heritage 

 A survey of economic and sociocultural factors. History of the Caribbean and Brazil, with special emphasis on the experience of African peoples dispersed in these areas, their role in the affairs of the Third World, varied colonial experiences, covering the pre-Columbian period through the present. 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

16300: Race and politics in the Caribbean 

The relationship between race and class; political power dependency in various Caribbean areas. The colonial and neocolonial experiences of key islands, and movements toward autonomy and independence. (W) 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.

16600: Caribbean Immigration 

An analysis of the economic and political factors leading to the 19th and 20th century population movements into, within, and from the Caribbean region, stressing migration to the United States, the Caribbean communities in New York, Panama, Central America, London, Paris, Montreal, New Haven, Caracas and Toronto. Immigration issues worldwide will be studied comparatively. 3 HR./WK.; 3 CR.


Special Topics and Independent Studies 


30100-39400 Honors 

Approval of the Program Director required.  Apply no later than December 10 in the Fall term and May 1 in the Spring term. VARIABLE CR., BUT USUALLY 4 CR./SEM.

31000: Independent Reading in Black Studies 

Approval of Program Director is mandatory. Program thoroughly planned and structured. The student will be required to produce evidence of the readings available and relevant to his/her interests. The readings must be compiled into a comprehensive report. Limited to upper-class students with adequate background in Black Studies. (W) 1-4 CR.


Courses in Other Departments 


In addition to the courses listed above, many courses from other divisions and departments of the College may be accepted towards the degree. Please consult the Program Director and Program Advisor each semester for a list of acceptable courses.