Why Pursue a Ph.D. Minor in Africana Studies?

A deeper exploration of Africana Studies reveals that it contextualizes the Black experience through the lens of a study, analysis, and general investigation of what Karenga (2010) details as the core areas of culture, which include history, religion, social organization, economics, politics, creativity, and ethos. It does this without privileging Eurocentric epistemology over the Black intellectual tradition as the clarifying mode of inquiry. Within an institution, the Africana Studies discipline interacts with the normative academic paradigm by both engaging it in the traditional sense, but also expending it as both alternative and critique.

As a Ph.D. student, you will discover:

  • the centering or infusion of Africana perspectives in the development of scholarly identity and research;
  • discursive methods of analyzing contemporary or classical society’s effect on Black life through a critical theoretical framework;
  • guidance in cultivating the scholar-activism encouraged within the fabric of the Africana Studies discipline; and
  • complexities of race and ethnicities in relationship with other socio-cultural contexts.

As a Ph.D. student, you will learn to:

  • develop reading, writing, and research processes and reflect on them to assess learning and identify areas for improvement;
  • create innovative, interdisciplinary work that responds to community needs;
  • read, analyze, and interpret texts critically;
  • write a reasoned argument integrating public/expert and personal voices;
  • listen to different perspectives in order to inform and articulate beliefs;
  • critically analyze and evaluate how race, gender, and cultural differences impact how people interact with those who are different from themselves;
  • describe and discuss the interdisciplinary, activists, social justice informed contexts, and foundations of Africana Studies as a field of study and its connection to other disciplines;
  • investigate and explain how issues of race, class, and gender influence intellectual and emotional responses; and
  • collaborate with others to create inclusive, equitable, and productive environments and outcomes for learning, working, and living.

More Info

Contact Dr. Leslie Etienne, Director of Africana Studies; lketienn@iu.edu.