(Offered as ARHA 270 and BLST 293 [D]) The course of study will examine those African cultures and their arts that have survived and shaped the aesthetic, philosophic and religious patterns of African descendants in Brazil, Cuba, Haiti and urban centers in North America. We shall explore the modes of transmission of African artistry to the West and examine the significance of the preservation and transformation of artistic forms from the period of slavery to our own day. Through the use of films, slides and objects, we shall explore the depth and diversity of this vital artistic heritage of Afro-Americans.
The class will be taught remotely. The course requires students to make virtual visits to museums with important collections of art works by African descendants in the diaspora. If and when possible, in-person visits to museums like the Studio Museum in Harlem are encouraged. There will also be selected video viewings in class to further highlight the creativity, innovation, and change in the works of African descendants in their new environments.