Africana Studies

Africana Studies: Self-Designed Major, Concentration 

Explore the rich, global history and diverse cultures of Africa and the African diaspora. 

What do African diaspora and Africana Studies mean? 

People of African descent living outside of the continent are often referred to as the African diasporaAfricana has come to refer to the study of the past and present experiences of Africans and the African diaspora wherever people of African descent reside; people of African descent are found around the globe. 

At Holy Cross, the Africana Studies concentration is an interdisciplinary academic program that examines the integral role that Africans and people of African descent have played in the histories, politics, cultures, and economies all over the world, particularly in Africa, the Americas, the Caribbean and Europe. Using methods from multiple disciplines including history, sociology, languages, literature, political science, religion, and music, students of all backgrounds gain insight into our shared past and present.

Africana Studies Statement on Racism, Violence on Black Bodies, and Activism

Read the full statement »

Program Highlights

As a complement to our long-standing Introduction to Africana Studies course, we have added a series of foundational courses to offer multiple ways to enter the concentration. These introductory classes generally address most if not all of the following areas:

  • the social construction of race
  • use of comparative case studies or a regional approach
  • methods and theories

We offer upper-level courses in most departments allowing students to enhance their major program of study or develop new avenues of inquiry and research. Coursework can be supplemented with additional research, internships, and study abroad and study away opportunities.

Course and Research Projects
Course and Research Projects

Coursework and research span the College curriculum in history, literature, art, politics, economics and religion.

Study Abroad or Study Away
Study Abroad or Study Away

Study abroad in Australia, England, Peru and Tanzania. Study away in D.C., New York, or at an HBCU.

Course and Research Projects
Carter G. Woodson Award

Graduating seniors are eligible to submit work for the annual Carter G. Woodson Award in recognition of excellence.

Africana Studies News

aerial photo of the HC campus
Holy Cross Professors’ Research to Address HIV Stigma, Racial Equity in Health and the Impact of Local Poetry in Worcester
The initiative was sponsored by an $800,000 Mellon Foundation grant
2021 Alpha Sigma Nu student honorees. Photo by John Buckingham
30 Holy Cross Students Inducted Into Jesuit Honor Society
Alpha Sigma Nu acceptance is granted to less than four percent of the class
Maggie Hartnett '23 and Professor David Karmon
Student-Generated Urban Studies Minor Debuts at Holy Cross
Maggie Hartnett '23 & faculty advisors team up to create new Urban Studies minor, which will explore themes around how we build our cities, what we do in them and how they shape us