First & Second Year

African Studies 250A – Introduction to African Studies

Major cultural, historical and geographical issues of African Studies.

AFST 250 is an introductory course designed to provide students with background information and critical approaches that will enable them to participate in academic discussions and take more advanced courses in the field of African Studies. It will emphasize critical thinking and seek to foster an awareness of the conceptual challenges involved in our attempts to understand the complexities of African Studies.

AFST 250A is a prerequisite for most senior courses in African Studies. The course has two sections. NOTE THAT INSTRUCTORS MAY WAIVE THIS PREREQUISITE

AFST 250A 001 is offered in Term 1.

AFST 250A: Introduction to African Studies (Course is offered once every year)
Instructor: Dr. Kofi Gbolonyo

Course Description: This course gives a broad overview of cultural, historical, and geographical issues of African Studies. It provides an ethnographic and ethnological survey of Sub-Saharan African peoples and cultures. The general focus is on relations between humans and environment, between cultures, and within societies in Africa. It highlights the change and the resistance to change in the period since the Berlin Conference of 1885, which redrew the map of Africa to serve the needs of European nations, but it also gives an in-depth look at ‘traditional’ Africa. The effect of the colonial period upon socio-cultural development is examined through a variety of literature and field notes. Students in all majors should find topics of interest. Background in social sciences is desirable but not required.

AFST 250A 002 is offered in Term 2.

AFST 250A – 002: Introduction to African Studies: Africa through Its Writing
Instructor: Dr. Kofi Gbolonyo

Course Description: This particular section of AFST 250 will approach Africa primarily through the study of writing (non-fiction, fiction and poetry) by, and about, Africans.

First and Second Year Courses recommended for African Studies Minors

(Please note that this is not an exhaustive list and does not include all the courses that the advisor might count for the Minor, depending on your interests and variable course content; courses offered change year to year and some of these courses have pre-requisites. Please contact African Studies Chair Rose-Marie Dechaine ( for more details or advice.

AGSC 100 (1)*Introduction to Land, Food and Community
AFSC 250 (6)* Land, Food and Community
ANTH 100 (3) Introduction to Cultural Anthropology
ANTH 200 (3) Introduction to Problems in Method and Theory in Anthropology
ANTH 202 (/6) Contemporary Social Problems
ECON 101 (3) Principles of Microeconomics
ECON 102 (3) Principles of Macroeconomics
ECON 234 (3) Wealth and Poverty of Nations
ECON 255 (3) Understanding Globalization
ENGL 224 002 World Literature in English
GEOG 121 (3) Geography, Modernity, and Globalization 1
GEOG 122 (3) Geography, Modernity, and Globalization 2
HIST 103 (6) World History since 1900
HIST 105 (3) Contemporary Issues in Historical Perspective
HIST 256 (3) History of Africa
IHHS 200 (3)* Understanding the Sociocultural Determinants of the Health of Populations
LING 101 (3) Languages of the World
MUSC 165D African Music and Dance Ensemble