ANTH-380 African Cultures in the Americas
This anthropology course is designed to introduce students to the processes and forms of cultural retention, acculturation, syncretism, reinterpretation, transformation, and innovation that are evident in African derived cultural diaspoas of the Americas. While the ownership of black cultural forms in the ‘New World’ has has been a perennial and complex issue during the 20th century, things become clearer as we unravel the strands of culture, power, and history. Using anthropological concepts, we explore the processes that brought African social and cultural institutions as well as Islam to the Diasporas of the Caribbean, Latin America, and the United States. We build upon Wallerstein and Rodney’s notions of a world economic system to show how the use of slave labor fueled the development of the Americas, and look at the cultural byproduct of that labor. Examining African social and cultural adaptations to the plantation economies, to gender and spiritual challenges, and to urban life helps us trace the cultural forms and commodities produced, and the commonalities and variations that emerged within black populations of these areas. We examine the cultural forms of resistance to domination and the creation of different creole cultures in the Americas, as Africans dealt with Indigenous peoples, Anglos, Spanish, French, and Portuguese. Some of the cultural areas we examine include Brazil, Haiti, Jamaica, Ecuador/Colombia, Cuba, New Orleans, South Carolina, and other historical and recent black cultures of the United States.
Prerequisites: SOCI-001, ANTH-001 or premission of Instructor
Other academic years
There is information about this course number in other academic years: