About Our ProgramOBJECTIVES AND MISSION
- To inculcate critical thinking regarding society and self, and to develop related skills such as analytical reading, writing, quantitative literacy, and public speaking so that students are equipped to critically engage, incorporate, and/or represent issues and perspectives regarding race and African-Americans.
- To promote understanding and appreciation of human equality and social justice as a way of addressing conflicts over race and ethnicity and to promote understanding of how these issues relate to matters of diversity in modern American life and the global community.
- To provide a program of in-depth study of African-American experiences in the Western world, including origins and cultural contributions globally, that illuminates the complexity of race and African-American experience.
WHAT IS AFRICAN AMERICAN STUDIES?
It is a course of study that examines African life and culture, both on the African continent and Diaspora. The African presence in the Americas dates over 400 years, (pre-1776), with the first enslaved Africans arriving in Jamestown in 1619. Today, over 30 million African Americans live in the United States that account for more than 12 percent of the U.S. population. Whether during the colonial era or present-day United States, African-American Studies explores and critically engages the wealth of African experiences in America and abroad from multiple disciplinary perspectives.
UAB’s African-American Studies Program offers an Africana perspective and provides opportunities to explore disciplines from social behavioral and/or cultural aesthetic approaches. Unlike most African-American studies programs in the humanities and social sciences, the UAB AAS program expands the field of knowledge in association with professional schools and courses in Medicine, Nursing, Public Health Business, Engineering, and Dentistry. The curriculum also emphasizes groundbreaking research that places African-American Studies in the context of a fairly traditional liberal arts orientation.