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CHAPTER TWO. Sustaining Africology: On the Creation and Development of a Discipline

Molefi Kete Asante

Subject Race and Ethnicity Studies » African American Studies

Key-Topics education, universities

DOI: 10.1111/b.9780631235163.2005.00005.x


The Black Studies revolution of the late twentieth century profoundly impacted the curricula of most institutions of higher education in the United States (J. Conyers 2003). Taken together with the infusion of students of African origin, the nuancing of traditional curricula, the development of departments, pro-grams, and centers in African-American Studies, the activism of committed African-American intellectuals, and the presence of multinational Africans as faculty, the academic life at American colleges and universities at the top of the twenty-first century is a quantum leap from what it was at the beginning of the twentieth century. No previously created discipline, such as anthropology, history, sociology, political science, or psychology, remains unaffected by the revolution that brought Black Studies into existence. Each field or discipline in the social sciences and the humanities has been transformed by the questions and issues raised by what I believe was at its base a part of the African-American nationalist tradition to bring about a more equitable society. “Black Studies” was a term that grew out of the political and academic climate of the 1960s (K. Bankole 1995). When students at San Francisco State campaigned in 1967 for courses that reflected the experiences of African people they called for “Black Studies,” since so much of the curriculum was essentially “White ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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