Africana studies prepares students, not only as adept critical thinkers, presenters, and researchers, but also as valuable global citizens. Because Africana studies is a multidisciplinary department, we offer courses to students of any major—knowledge to expand your worldview and deepen understanding of people of African ancestry.

Faculty

Our faculty are both scholars and teachers who devote their careers to making important contributions to their disciplines through writing and research. They are committed to undergraduate education and teach everything from first-year seminars to advanced courses.

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Department Overview

Since the late 1960s, when Oberlin College created a Black Studies Department that evolved into today’s Africana studies department, the college has offered a socially relevant education that has received national recognition. Students may either earn a major or minor in this field. Many are double majors, combining this course of study with theater, sociology, religion, or other social sciences.

As an academic major, Africana studies prepares students, not only as adept critical thinkers, presenters, and researchers, but also as valuable global citizens. Because Africana studies is a multidisciplinary department, we offer courses to students of any major—knowledge to expand your worldview and deepen understanding of people of African ancestry. Students explore key aspects of black life in Africa, the Caribbean, the United States, Europe, and the Americas. This pluralistic approach to the curriculum gives students a fuller appreciation of all cultures.  

In addition, our faculty and staff offer programs and services in cooperation with Afrikan Heritage House, a residence hall and the college’s black collective and cultural center. Afrikan Heritage House welcomes students who want to heighten their understanding of African, Africana, and African-Caribbean traditions and issues. Stop in to partake of soul sessions, art shows, and poetry readings, the Kuumba festival, and other happenings.

Africana Studies News

A man sits in front of a group of students, holding his hand out.

Revisiting the Underground Railroad

February 26, 2020
A student re-enactment of escaped slaves along the Underground Railroad is recognized 40 years later with a visit by participant Herman Beavers ’81 at Third World House.
A male swimmer stands with a crowd behind him.

This Week in Photos: February 26

February 26, 2020
In this photo series, we take a glimpse inside a diverse group of events ranging from WOBIE Fest in Oberlin’s dance club to an NCAC championship swimming and diving meet in Granville, Ohio.

Africana Studies Facilities

lounge area in residence hall with large photos and mural.

Afrikan Heritage House (Lord-Saunders)

Approximately 66 students live in Lord-Saunders creating a family atmosphere that extends beyond the house and into the larger campus community.
Rice Hall

Rice Hall

Rice Hall holds faculty and academic department offices for the social sciences and the humanities.