The Why?

While there are dozens of reasons why to major or minor in African & African American Studies, we want to emphasize the following four:

  • We are interdisciplinary. If you like to read novels, and to know something about history, and to understand politics, and to watch films, then you'd like the disciplinary diversity of AFAM. 
  • We are global and comparative. We study Black folks wherever they are, and that's a lot of places. And we study how the Black experience compares to that of other groups, as well as what we can learn about all groups by studying the creation of Blackness as a category. 
  • We lead to many career paths. Many students ask: What would I do with an AFAM major/minor? The answer: You can do all the same things that you would do with a Psych major or a Philosophy major or a History major or any Liberal Arts major. That is the value of Liberal Arts degree. While in AFAM you might be focusing on the Black experience and related topics, you are also learning how to think, write, and speak critically. Those are the tools that get you exciting jobs. We have students who are lawyers and activists and bankers and work at public policy think tanks and who work for Obama and who work at Google and who are teachers and who are getting their PhDs and many many more. It's also a great compliment to majors in other schools, especially Communications, Social Work, or Anthropology.
  • We are small (but growing). Being small allows us to do a few events a semester in which undergraduates and faculty members can interact. In advising sessions we try to get to know our majors and minors, focusing on what they are interested in doing while at the University of Oklahoma and beyond. Because we are small, our majors and minors get to know each other well over the course of their studies, which allows for even more open dialogue and debate inside and outside of the classroom.
  • We invite you to explore our program options.

    University of Oklahoma-Norman
    601Elm Ave, Rm 517
    Norman, OK 73019
    405-325-2327