Requirements: African Diaspora Studies


The African Diaspora Studies concentration has four central goals: (1) to offer students a structured program in the study of Africa and the African diaspora, (2) to help students explore the variety of cultural types and formations in the African diaspora, (3) to expose students to the connections between African studies and African American studies, and (4) to promote curricular and extracurricular interest in and awareness of the cultures of the African diaspora for the campus as a whole.


The Curriculum

The African Diaspora Studies Concentration consists of at least five courses:

  • Four courses, in two departments:
    • At least one of which is African or non-U.S. Diasporic studies
    • At least one of which is in African American Studies
    • At least one of which is at the 300-level or above
  • AFDS 310: "Exploring the African Diaspora"

Each spring, the director of the concentration, in consultation with the African Diaspora Studies Faculty Crossroads, the program's advisory committee, will determine the courses offered during the upcoming academic year that will fulfill the various program requirements. Courses counted toward a student's major may be counted toward concentration requirements. For a list of courses fulfilling the various requirements, students should consult the program website.

Students who wish to declare a concentration in African Diaspora Studies should consult with the program director.

For First-year and New Students

Our introductory course, AFDS 108: "The Crossroads Seminar," is designed to orient students to the interdisciplinary nature of African Diaspora Studies at Kenyon College. This course places a distinct emphasis upon critical thinking, oral presentation and critical writing as integral components of the learning experience. The objective of this course is to introduce students to the wide range of approaches which exist to develop a firm grasp of African Diaspora Studies as it currently exists, as informed by past events, and as history continues to unfold.

Transfer Credit Policy

Transfer credit may be applied toward fulfilling three of required advanced coursework. Students planning to study abroad should seek approval of transfer credits, in advance, from the director.

Students graduating in 2021 and 2022

If you were already in the process of working towards a concentration in African Diaspora Studies, you may complete the concentration under the old requirements or the new ones. If you have already taken AFDS 110, we will count it place of AFDS 310; you do not need to take both. 

The old requirements are as follows:

  • AFDS 110: "Introduction to Diaspora Studies"
  • One (1) unit of foundation courses (0.5 unit in African studies and 0.5 unit in African American studies)
  • One and a half (1.5) units of advanced courses (in no fewer than two departments)
  • Half (0.5) unit senior-level seminar course