AADS Seminar Series | From the Center of Afro-American Culture to the Department of Africology: Black Studies at UWM

We would like to invite you to a special 50th Anniversary presentation of the African & African Diaspora Studies Seminar Series by Dalila Negreiros (PhD Student, African & African Diaspora Studies), with additional prerecorded material by Toni Johns (PhD Student, Urban Studies)

April 26, 2019
12:30-1:30 pm
Mitchell Hall 206

From the Center of Afro-American Culture to the Department of Africology: Black Studies at UWM (1968 – 1994)

The creation of Black Studies departments was a historical phenomenon connected to the civil rights movement. The demands for equality, inclusion, reparation and structural change took over many institutions to target the state and society as a whole. At the same time a Black Studies department’s creation was connected to the national and international black liberation’s movements, it was also determined by the local conditions. In 1969 UWM created its Center of Afro-American Culture. At the moment of its creation the center had many roles: to support black students’ adaptation to UWM, to serve as a mediator between the black community of Milwaukee and the University, and to play a role in the development of the field of black studies locally, regionally and internationally. Focused on analyzing the case of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, this research analyzes four major struggles towards the institutionalization of the Center of Afro-American Culture and its transformation to the Department of Africology: the mobilization to create the center, the process to make the center a department, the constitution of the major program, and the change of the name to Africology. The goal of this research is to highlight the history of the Black Studies department at UWM as part of the strategy to combat racism at national and local levels.