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Congratulaions to AFR Faculty

Please join us in congratulating our faculty for their accomplishments:

Gabeba Baderoon's Regarding Muslims jointly won the Best Non-Fiction Monograph prize from the National Institute for Humanities and Social Sciences in South Africa

Julie Kleinman has been awarded a W. E. B. Du Bois fellowship in the Hutchins Center for African & African American Research at Harvard for Spring 2018.

Chris Tounsel published the article, "Race, religion, and resistance: revelations from the Juba archive,” in the Journal of Eastern African Studies. It highlights the ways in which Southern Sudanese activists in the 1960s understood the role of God's Providence in their struggle for political liberation from the Sudanese Government.



Announcing the new Graduate Minor!

The African Studies Program now offers a minor! For a doctoral minor, the student has to complete 15 credits (with at least 6 at the 500 level), and at least one Graduate Faculty member from the minor field must serve on the student’s doctoral committee. Please check our Graduate page for more information.

African Studies Students Placed in Undergraduate Research Exhibition

On Saturday, October 1, 2016, The Africana Research Center hosted an Undergraduate Research Exhibition in recognition of undergraduate students who have conducted outstanding research on issues affecting the African Diaspora.

Daily Collegian articles regarding the event:



Elizabeth Catchmark
Departments of English, Philosophy, African American Studies, and Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies
College of the Liberal Arts
Nominated by Megan Fung, Ph.D.
"Kindred Spirits:  Reading Interracial Love Relationships Through Embodied White Supremacy"



Cherish Harper
African Studies Program
College of the Liberal Arts
Nominated by Clemente Abrokwaa, Ph.D.
"Institutional Racism"



Janelle Kelly
Department of Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies
College of the Liberal Arts
Nominated by Jill Wood, Ph.D.
"Being Black and Male in America:  Racialized Violence Against Black Males in U.S. Society"


Seamus Wagner
African Studies Program and Department of Political Science
College of the Liberal Arts
Nominated by Clemente Abrokwaa, Ph.D.
"The Arab Slave Trade in East Africa and its Impact on the Coastal Peoples of East Africa"

African Feminist Initiative Call for Papers

The African Feminist Initiative (AFI) at Penn State University will host a small conference on current debates in African feminist thought from September 23 to 24, 2016 at the University Park campus. This will be the first in a series of conferences and workshops at which scholars and graduate students interested in the burgeoning field of African feminist studies can present their work. We welcome scholarly and artistic presentations that highlight state of the art feminist theory, activism, and practice on the continent and beyond. Please send abstracts consisting of 250 words and a list of works cited, and brief CV or bio, to and by June 1st, 2016.

The African Feminist Initiative was established in April 2015 as an intellectual hub for African feminist research and teaching in North America. In addition to sponsoring scholarly and creative presentations, the AFI will host an annual conference focusing on critical and emerging themes in African feminism. They will also engage in research projects and capacity-building activities with colleagues, both in the United States and at various African universities.

Gabeba Baderoon and Alicia C. Decker, Associate Professors in the Department of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and the African Studies Program at Penn State, are co-directors of the African Feminist Initiative. The Steering Committee consists of the co-directors and five additional Penn State scholars who work in the area of African feminist thought: Maha Marouan, Hoda El Shakry, Ebony Coletu, Rosemary Jolly and Iyun Osagie. The AFI Advisory Board includes leading African feminist scholars from around the world. Current members include Akosua Adomako Ampofo, Theresa Barnes, Kum-Kum Bhavnani, Mary Hames, Amina Mama, Patricia McFadden, Awino Okech, Margo Okazawa-Rey, Fatima Sadiqi and Sylvia Tamale.

We hope you will join us. Limited funding will be available to offset costs for selected participants.


Interview with Visiting African Studies Professor Osman

Click on the link below to see the TV interview....

Reporters Yousef Saba and Courtney Barrow talk with Centre County Muslims for their reaction to raging national debate on terrorism and Islam.