Black World Studies
BWS 105. Introduction to Black World Studies (Quaye)
This course offers several perspectives in examining the Black experience in Africa, the Caribbean, and the Americas. The course is intended to serve as an introduction to the diversity and the rich cultural heritage of peoples of African descent. Particular attention is placed on investigating discrimination, prejudice, as well as several theories of oppression. Attention is given to the social conditions of Blacks through extensive discussion of the processes that create and maintain structural inequalities in the political, economic, educational, and health institutions. In this connection, students will read both primary and interpretive texts and examine these issues in the context of a liberal arts education and black culture. (Group I, Diversity)
BWS 110, BWS 111. Beginning Swahili (Skandor)
A course emphasizing oral proficiency and comprehension and developing introductory reading and writing skills. Students are guided through the process of acquisition following an oral approach that stresses classroom participation in a cooperative atmosphere. The aim is to give students threshold oral fluency in the language and the ability to read simple text. Also listed as SWAH 110, SWAH 111. F, S.
BWS 122. African Traditional Religion and Western Culture (Twesigye)
The influence of Africa on New World Black culture. A major emphasis is on religiosociological patterns growing out of traditional African religions and philosophy and the influences to be found, particularly in America, in such areas as folklore, social organization, music, language, and literature. (Group III, Diversity)
BWS 126. Afro-American History, 1619-1875 (Aniagolu)
Beginning with a comprehensive analysis of the institution of slavery and its effect upon Afro-Americans, and from a Black perspective, the basic ideas, institutions, and social and political problems that greatly influenced the role of the Black man in United States history. Recommended for history students. (Group I, Diversity)
BWS 128. Afro-American History, 1875-Present (Aniagolu)
The demise of Reconstruction, the doctrine of separate-but-equal, and the policy of desegregation, as well as other phenomena in the historical struggle of Blacks for equality in America from 1875 to the present. (Group I, Diversity)
BWS 200.2. Introduction to Precolonial African History (Staff)
An introductory survey course exploring the civilizations, demography, economies, religions, societies, and politics of Africa, from antiquity to c. 1800 CE. Particular attention will be paid to the systems of interregional as well as international trade, including the indigenous and international slave trade, and its impact and implications for Africa and the world.
BWS 200.3. Martin, Malcolm, and Mandela (Quaye)
This course examines the lives, philosophies, contributions, and legacies of three leaders in the struggles of people of African descent for civil rights and racial empowerment of Blacks in the 20th century. Specifically, we will explore how their lives, ideas, and actions may have affected our personal lives and social discourse on race, identity, and progress of Blacks in the 21st century. In reading both primary and interpretive texts of these individuals, we will explore the connections, the differences, and the similarities between the experiences of Blacks in America and in South Africa.
BWS 224. African American Images (Ryan)
An examination of both literature and film, focusing on the representation of African Americans, and the artistic and socio-cultural functions of those representations. Course content will vary. Possible topics include: Images of Black Women in Fiction and Film, Figures in Black, and Black Women Filmmakers. Also listed as ENG 224. F. (Group III, Diversity)
BWS 225. Continuing Swahili (Skandor or Wasao)
An intermediate course that reviews the structures of the language acquired orally and builds on these to provide students with an ability to speak and understand most language of daily life. Some aspects of the cultures of the people who speak Swahili will be presented in class through the language. Students will be exposed to samples of Swahili literature, oral and written. Also listed as SWAH 225. F.
BWS 268. Black Women’s Literary Traditions (Ryan)
Examines a variety of texts by Black women writers such as Zora Neale Hurston, Ann Petry, Gwendolyn Brooks, Lorraine Hansberry, Paule Marshall, Lucille Clifton, Toni Morrison, Audre Lorde, Ntozake Shange, Alice Walker, Gloria Naylor, and others. Explores the ways in which Black feminist critical methodologies have been important to the recovery and interpretation of Black women’s texts. Possible topics include: Black Women’s Literature and Spirituality, Black Women’s Autobiography, and Twentieth Century Black Women Writers. Also listed as ENG 268. (Group III)
BWS 273. Approaches to African-American Literature (Ryan)
Variable course focusing on a critical movement (such as The Harlem Renaissance or The Black Arts Movement) or a prominent figure (such as Richard Wright or James Baldwin) in the African American literary tradition. Possible topics include: The Harlem Renaissance, and James Baldwin: Novelist, Playwright, Essayist, Activist. Also listed as ENG 273. (Group III)
BWS 300.3. East African Culture: Literature, Economy and Political Development (Quaye)
East Africa is not only the site of the emergence of humanity but also has continued to play an essential role in the history of the world as a cultural crossroads for goods, ideas, political and social experiments. In this course, students will read both primary and interpretive literature and visit major historical, cultural, and environmental sites. Topics covered would include migrant labor, class and ethnic structures, human rights and political struggles in relation to externally imposed structural adjustment programs. S. (Diversity)
BWS 300.4. Women, Development and the Environment (Quaye)
Feminist research in Africa has identified women as key social actors who utilize the options available in their societies to develop their skills and contribute substantially to family income and economic development (Boserup, 1980). This course is designed to explore gender relations in Africa and women’s involvement in the process of social and economic development. S. (Diversity)
BWS 300.5. African Medical Systems (Quaye)
This course will explore several themes in African medical systems through an examination of folklore, myths, rituals, religious beliefs and science as part of the broader focus for investigating medical systems in Africa. Topics covered would include: African concept of health and illness, the social context of illness, construction and deconstruction of sickness, role of family network in health care (lay consultation), access to health care, politics of cost control, alternative healing systems and the effects of structural adjustment programs on health care delivery. S. (Diversity)
BWS 305. Contemporary Africa in Focus: State Regimes and Democracy in Africa (Quaye)
This course will review current scholarship on post independent state formation in Africa and address issues of governance, parliamentary democracy, constitutional changes, human rights concerns and democratic transitions in several African countries. Prerequisite: BWS 105 or consent of instructor. F. (Group I, Diversity, Writing)
BWS 348. Black Family (Quaye)
In this course we will explore the realities of Black family life. In particular, we will examine the historical, political, economic, and cultural conditions that have impacted on the Black family of today. The course will explore the media’s construction of family by focusing on such themes as gender roles, male-female relationships, marriage, and Black-White relationships. We will explore government policies on the family, including survival strategies employed by Blacks to overcome the complexities of family life. S. (Group I, Diversity)
BWS 350. Black Identity (Quaye)
This course is intended to explore the realities of “Blackness” in diverse cultures in Africa, the Caribbean, and the Americas. The goal is to explore different perspectives on identity and culture by examining different levels of maturation among Blacks and the social forces that shape these identities. We will also examine the intersection between class and gender and explore the polarities of belonging to different social worlds. F. (Group I, Diversity)
BWS 369. Genre Studies in African American Literature (Ryan)
Variable course focusing on a specific genre—narrative, poetry, novel, drama, essay— within African American literary tradition. The course will examine both literary and socio-political factors that have influenced the development of the specific genre. Possible topics include: Toward a Re-Definition of Slave Narrative and Contemporary Black Drama. Also listed as ENG 369. F. (Group III, Diversity)
BWS 400.2. Internship in Tanzania (Quaye)
This course is intended to provide OWU students with the opportunity to do internship with a professional, social service, or research institution in a Tanzanian setting where they will work for eight weeks. In connection with this experience, each student will prepare a major paper or report (25-30 pages) discussing the significance of the organization, and detailing their experiences and interactions while working on the internship. F. (Diversity)
BWS 490. Independent Study (Staff)
Juniors and seniors may do supervised independent study in the Black experience. A major project is required. F, S.
BWS 491. Directed Reading (Staff)
Individually supervised investigator into selected subjects. Prerequisite: consent of instructor. F, S.
BWS 499. Seminar in Black World Studies (Quaye)
This course is an upper-level seminar that explores an extensive and comprehensive narrative of the major schools of thought and methods which have influenced thinking about the African presence in the Americas. The goal of the seminar is to examine a variety of Afrocentric theories and methods that are essential components to both qualitative and quantitative research methods in Black Studies. S. (Writing)