About Africana Studies at Vassar

A comprehensive curriculum

Africana Studies is Vassar’s longest-running multidisciplinary program.  Established in 1969, it has been at the heart of transforming the curriculum and broadening the intellectual and social experience of students, faculty, and administrators for four decades.  Its educational mission is to promote a focused and critical study of the people, cultures, and institutions of Africana and the African Diaspora drawing from nearly all of the disciplines at Vassar College.

We have, perhaps, among the most comprehensive list of talented faculty members and courses from Anthropology, Arabic, Art, Education, English, Film, French, Hispanic Studies, German Studies, History, Political Science, Psychology, Religion and Sociology.  The program provides a rich array of over forty courses covering political, sociological, literary, religious, historical, or artistic themes.  Our courses attract students from all backgrounds and encourage a vibrant exchange of ideas.

Public Events

The program also organizes or supports public lectures, seminars, field trips and artistic performances on these themes.  These events bring together members of Vassar as well as the larger Poughkeepsie communities.  Africana Studies is an ideal field of study for students who have a variety of academic interests, and who want to understand the world from a kaleidoscope of disciplines.  Think of Africana Studies as a comprehensive liberal arts education encapsulated in one program.

Study Abroad

In addition to its offerings on the Vassar campus, and a major and a correlate sequence, the program also has opportunities for study at American historically black institutions and for foreign study in Africa and the Caribbean through the college's study abroad options.