An Introduction to African Studies
African studies is an undergraduate program at Hofstra University aimed at introducing students to the study of African societies, languages and cultures. By offering a broad spectrum of courses in the humanities, social sciences, and the natural sciences it aims at accomplishing three major objectives:
1. To show students there are many reasons to study Africa.
Africa is the cradle of mankind, a region whose inhabitants have settled thoughout the world in numerous waves of migration. This is a process that continues today. In virtually every part of the world peoples of African descent play a vital role. In no place is this more evident than in the Americas where the largest Diaspora communities live.
Africa contains a disproportionate quantity of the world's raw materials. It's flora, fauna, and mineral resources have fueled the economies of the developing world. Africa has the largest number of spoken languages in the world reflecting it's rich cultural diversity. The musical and artistic traditions of Africa have shaped the main developments in 20th century art. Given Africa's unique position in world history and culture, African Studies to bear on our understanding of the forces shaping international socio-economic change today.
2. To familiarize students with the main transformations that are occurring on the continent today.
3. To develop the African studies component of every department, thus contributing to a more in depth approach to traditional academic disciplines.
Hofstra's African Studies program is committed to sponsoring outreach events, initiating links to African and Diaspora cultural institutions, to facilitating student and faculty exchanges, and to serving as a resource for other departments and programs interested in developing an African Studies component.
Our faculties have conducted a wide variety of individual research projects throughout the continent, which have served to enrich our curricular offerings and motivate students to widen their knowledge of Africa and its Diaspora.