AAS 102:


Olufemi Taiwo

Ford Fellow
Carter G. Woodson Institute
for Afro-American and African Studies

When: 1230-1345 T/TH
Where: Maury 209

I Baptize Thee

William H. Johnson, "I Baptize Thee," ca. 1940
Digital image courtesy of Smithsonian American Art Museum

Introduction to the Course

Introduction | Requirements | Grading

Instructors: Professor Olufemi Taiwo and invited lecturers

Teaching Assistants: Mieka Brand (Anthropology) and Jeff Fleisher (Anthropology)


We assume that registrants in this course are already familiar with African-American history and life from their participation in AAS 101. This course covers a wider range of topics and expands the "African" in African-American and African Studies. Given that this is the second foundational course for AAS majors and minors, we seek to familiarize this category of students and others with the breadth and scope of the African World, especially the wide distribution of its Diaspora both in terms of the demographic dispersal of peoples of African descent and, more importantly, the even wider penetration of African-inspired cultural forms across the globe.

To this end, it is our hope that students will, at the end of this course, have

    • a nuanced understanding of the complexity of the African Diaspora;
    • a solid knowledge of the interconnections between Africa and its Diaspora;
    • a thorough grounding in the originality of the synthesis of its culture and other areas of life created by Africans in the New World conceived expansively and,
    • finally, a capacity to identify, pursue and successfully execute more specialized studies in advanced classes of various aspects of life and thought in the African world.

The above are the themes that run through and unite the various modules of the course and they will supply our guest lecturers and lectures with the necessary unity for its many units.

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Lectures and mandatory discussion section.

Syllabus for Mieka Brand's Discussion Sections

Syllabus for Jeff Fleisher's Discussion Section

Links to assigned readings and related materials will appear on the course web site on the Readings page, and the pages for each Lecturer (see Syllabus page). All course readings and materials will be available electronically, either linked directly to this web site, or through the Toolkit Materials page for the course.  


Here is where the syllabus will be updated and you can check for reading assignments, study questions, images, and on-grounds related lectures and other activities.

A Microsoft Word document version of the Syllabus is linked here.

Announcements of reviews for exams will be on the course web site as well.

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(a description of these assignments can be found in Assignments)

Your grade will be based on the following:

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