Africana Studies

2014-15 Tuition

$45,130

Application deadlines

Fall, Jan. 10; no spring admissions

Requirements summary

  • All Graduate School Requirements, including the TOEFL Exam for Non-Native English Applicants
  • Personal statement
  • Writing sample
  • Three letters of recommendation on letterhead
  • GRE general test advised

Degrees

  • Ph.D.

Subjects

  • Africana Studies (Ph.D.)

Major concentrations

  • Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis
  • Historical, Political, and Social Analysis

Graduate Program:

The Graduate Field of Africana Studies at Cornell University established the first Ph.D. program in Africana Studies in New York State in Fall 2013. The Africana Studies Ph.D. program is a small and high quality program designed to expand knowledge production about peoples of African descent and to train future generations of scholars who will deepen and refine the field.

An interdisciplinary field of study, Africana Studies embraces the study of people of African ancestry on the African continent and in the United States, the Caribbean, Latin America and the broader diaspora. Toward that end, it is at the forefront of scholarship that both transcends disciplinary fields and brings more powerful explanatory value to issues of race, ethnicity, class, gender, and sexuality. Accordingly, since its inception, Africana Studies has profoundly shaped research and discourse in the humanities and social sciences by altering traditional epistemologies and methodologies. Africana Studies has historically resisted the confines of national borders in its analyses. The rise of the nationstate is a recent historical development in world history, and because boundaries and borders are permeable in the transmission of art, dance, music, and literature, scholars do not confine the field spatially or temporally in examining the dynamics of change for peoples of African ancestry. As a result, Africana Studies helps students to appreciate cultural and epistemological diversity, multidimensionality, multiple perspectives, and interconnectivity, which are essential for higher education and its production of knowledge and for the world in the 21st Century.

Indeed, the diversity of the Cornell University's college system, its strengths in the traditional disciplines and its strong support and encouragement of interdisciplinary work provides students an ideal environment in which to pursue graduate training in this field. Moreover, Cornell now has a critical mass of scholars in the Humanities, Visual and Expressive Culture and Social

Sciences whose work collectively sits on the cutting edge of Africana Studies. Furthermore, our faculty offers regional expertise in Africa, the U.S., the Caribbean and Latin America allowing us to offer a Ph.D. program that is multi-disciplinary and transnational.

The Ph.D. program in Africana Studies augments Cornell University’s mission to discover, preserve, and disseminate knowledge. Cornell’s world class libraries makes it possible for its faculty and students to carry out the University’s mission. Important collections on Africa and the diaspora are housed across the nineteen units of the University Library system. In addition, the John Henrik Clarke Africana Library at the Africana Studies and Research Center and its collection of [21,100] volumes focuses on the social and political dimensions of the history and culture of peoples of African ancestry.

We seek to enroll students who share the Cornell’s mission and have demonstrated strong research, written and analytical skills either through the completion of an undergraduate thesis or a Master’s degree in the humanities and social sciences. Although the cohort each year will be small, three to four students, we will recruit nationally and internationally for the best students.

Successful applicants will help satisfy the future demand for scholars with the rigorous intellectual training that Africana Studies offers. Graduates of this Ph.D. program entering the field of Higher Education will be entering a vibrant and growing labor market for doctorates in Africana Studies. Students with doctoral degrees in Africana Studies will be equally prepared to work in a variety of fields from business to the government.

 

Gerard Aching -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: 19th and 20th century Caribbean literature and intellectual histories; theories of modernisms and modernity in Latin America; 19th-century colonial literature in the Caribbean; slavery and philosophy; visual regimes and politics in Caribbean popular cultures
N'Diri Assie-Lumumba -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: African and African diaspora education; gender issues; family and social structure
Ernesto Bassi Arevalo -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: Role circulation (of goods, people, news, and ideas) across political boundaries plays in the configuration of geographic spaces, collective identities, geopolitical projects, and political allegiances.
Carole Boyce Davies -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: African and Caribbean literature, African Diaspora studies
Judith Byfield -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: African and African diaspora history with emphasis on West Africa; gender; labor history and material culture; Caribbean History
Margo Crawford -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: 20th Century African American literature; cultural movements and visual culture; race, gender and sexuality studies; literary theory
Locksley Edmondson -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: African and Caribbean politics
Parfait Eloundou-Enyegue -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: demography of inequality; population and development; sociology of education; project evaluation; research methods
Grant Farred -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: African studies, postcolonial theory, cultural studies, philosophy, English literature
Cheryl Finley -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: interdisciplinary study combining the fields of African Diaspora Art History, Film Studies, Museum Studies and Heritage Tourism
Travis Gosa -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: sociology of education; sociology of the family; race and ethnicity; popular and youth culture; qualitative research
Sandra Greene -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: African history; preindustrial social history; gender; ethnicity
Siba Grovogui -- Concentrations: Historical, Political, and Social Analysis; Research interests: International relations, political theory, Africana studies
Salah Hassan -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: African and African American art and folklore
Oneka LaBennett -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: Race and gender, migration, transnationalism and globalization, youth culture and consumption, urban anthropology, the anthropology of space and place; African Diaspora, Caribbean and U.S.
Stacey Langwick -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: anthropology of medicine, healing and the body; post-colonial science studies; African ethnography; ontological politics; culture and feminist theory; Tanzania; anthropology of knowledge/materiality
Fouad Makki -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: development sociology; comparative literature; social theory; international development; historical sociology
Riche Richardson -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: African-American literature; southern United States studies
Noliwe Rooks -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests:
Olufemi Taiwo -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: Africa and Modernity; late transitions to modernity in Africa, Europe and Asia; African political thought; law and philosophy
Nicholas Van de Walle -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: African political and economic processes; theories and methods of comparative politics; international political economy; democratization; effectiveness or foreign aid
Margaret Washington -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: African American history; southern U.S. history; women's history
Dagmawi Woubshet -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: African American literature; Ethiopian poesis; queer studies; AIDS and narratives of loss; 1980s; contemporary African and African-American visual culture

Graduate School Professors (emeritus)

Robert Harris -- Concentrations: Cultural, Literary, and Visual Analysis; Research interests: African American history; African American historiography; thought and culture; leaders and movements