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Undergraduate Studies Catalog



Director: A. Karanja


The Black World Studies program (BWS), inaugurated in 1971, was Loyola University Chicago’s first interdisciplinary minor. BWS offers a wide array of courses that are strongly compatible with most majors, minors, and many areas of concentration. The curriculum continues in an evolutionary mode, with new courses and special topics offered on an on-going basis. Existing courses in the minor program include literature, music, history, politics, social work, religion, and the popular and material culture of the black world. Beyond its curricular offerings, BWS works cooperatively with other programs and departments throughout the university, sponsoring special guest lectures, panels, workshops and symposia, which augment classroom instruction and inform the larger community. BWS also sponsors an annual Blacks in Science symposium designed to foster an exchange of ideas and strategies through which to address the relatively low number of individuals of African heritage who enter and successfully complete college and university mathematics and science programs. BWS minors are encouraged to take advantage of study abroad programs as a means to enhance their knowledge of the broader black experience.

The Black World Studies program is student-centered and grounded in the belief that the foundation for a productive life is embedded in the educational enterprise. Within this framework BWS nurtures the intellectual, social, creative, and emotional life of students who pursue the minor.


The Black World Studies minor consists of five courses: BWS 201 and four cross-listed electives, two of which must be chosen from a single department. Eligible courses are listed below.


101. Issues in Black World Studies.
Designed to create opportunities for students with an interest in the larger curricular thrust of BWS to explore specific topics and foci not currently included in the BWS curriculum. Contexts such as the history of Black intellectual development, the material culture of Black populations, popular culture and the interface between and among various social movements. Students can repeat this course to earn up to six hours of credit.

201. Black World Studies Colloquium.
Interdisciplinary in nature, this required course focuses on a wide range of issues relevant to historical and contemporary African diasporic people, with particular emphasis on America, Africa, South America and the Caribbean. Stresses the various cultural configurations that exist among African peoples, geographically. Seeks to explore major philosophical, religious, anthropological and linguistic themes relative to their lives. Places emphasis on theories of race and racialization, and the role of popular culture in shaping African cultures in the West.

295. Directed Readings.
An independent program of reading and research developed in consultation with a supervising faculty member and the BWS director, usually culminating in a major research paper or project.

395. Special Topics in Black World Studies
Upper-level cross-listed courses on various topics will be offered from time to time.

The following courses are cross-listed with Black World Studies and other departments and programs. For complete descriptions, see the course listings of originating departments (in parentheses).

Note: Special topics courses originating in other departments are also cross-listed with Black World Studies when appropriate.


213. Contemporary African Culture. (ANTH 213) (INTS 214) (RCS 213)

214. African American Anthropology. (ANTH 214)

271. World Cultures. (ANTH 271) (selected sections)


219. Intercultural Communication. (CMUN 218) (selected sections)


372. Crime, Race and Violence. (CRMJ 372) (PLSC 372)


333. Education of the Urban Child. (CIEP 333)


282. African American Literature. (ENGL 282)

316. Caribbean Literatures in English. (ENGL 316) (INTS 316)

384. African Literatures in English. (ENGL 314) (INTS 317)

389. Studies in African-American Literature. (ENGL 384)


104. Gospel Choir. (MUSC 104)

109. Jazz Band. (MUSC 109)

156. Introduction to Jazz. (MUSC 156)

158. Introduction to Gospel Music. (MUSC 158)

251. African-American Art. (FNAR 251)

254. History of African-American Music. (MUSC 250)

355. Art of Africa and Oceania. (ANTH 345) (FNAR 355) (INTS 355)


363. Civil War and Reconstruction. (HIST 363)

379. African American History to 1865. (HIST 379)

380. African American History since 1865. (HIST 380)

386. African History to 1600. (HIST 350) (INTS 378)

387. African History Post-1600. (HIST 351) (INTS 351)

388. Rebels and Reformers in U.S. History (HIST 381) (PAX 387) (WOST 303)


280. Francophone Literature: Africa and the Caribbean (LITR 280 variable topic)

309. Francophone Literature (in French) (FREN 309) (INTS 309)


218. African American Politics. (PLSC 218)

340. International Relations of Africa. (INTS 340) (PLSC 340)

342. African Politics. (INTS 342) (PLSC 342)


122. Race and Ethnic Relations. (SOCL 122) (PAX 122) (ASIA 122)

228. Sociology of the African American Experience. (SOCL 228)

Inequality in Society. (SOCL 250) (PAX 250) (ASIA 250)


374. Cultural Diversity (SOWK 370) (ASIA 370)


279. Early African Christianity. (THEO 180 variable topic) (INTS 398) (RCS 201)

280. Native African Spirituality. (THEO 180 variable topic) (INTS 398) (RCS 251)

288. African American Religious Experience. (RCS 276) (THEO 176)

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