UWM Department of Africology

Africology critically examines the cultures, societies and political economies of people of African origin and descent. Professor Winston Van Horne, a pioneer of Black Studies, coined “Africology” to reflect the breadth of issues facing people of African descent in the United States and throughout the world. The Africology program at UWM exposes students to historical texts and literature, modern social issues, philosophical questions and political crises through an African-centered lens. Students learn to view complex situations from multiple perspectives; synthesize known information and hypothesize about the unknown; apply lessons from the past to problems of the present; and critique past practices. The study of Africology is relevant to everyone, regardless of race, gender, ethnicity, nationality or religion.

The Africology major and minor prepare students for a wide range of careers in business, management, government, education, public health, communication, social services and public policy. Africology majors and minors practice a range of professions in medicine, law, criminal justice, performing arts, sports, media, journalism, and religious ministry. The Department takes great pride in the array of careers that distinguishes its graduates. The major in Africology also provides students with a foundation for graduate studies in disciplines like economics, political science, sociology, history, English, anthropology and communication. The Africology Ph.D. program at UWM is an option for majors as is African American Studies at institutions such as the University of Chicago and University of California, Berkeley, or African American and African Studies at Michigan State University.

The Africology faculty is recognized nationally and internationally for its expertise. Faculty specialization includes: racial identity, folklore, African religions, gender relations, social movements, racism, African American history, public health, Black politics, Black feminist criticism and theory, international finance and trade in African countries, economics in the Black community, and transnational migration.

The History of Africology