Institute of African Studies - Columbia University

Courses

African Language Courses

Spring 2016: ADV ANCIENT EGYPTIAN II

Call Number: 
28626
Points: 
3
Location: 
New York University, ISAW Building (15 East 84th Street), Large Conference Room, 6th Floor
Day/Time: 
Tuesdays, 10:00am-12:00pm
Instructor: 
Ogden Goelet and Stephane A Charitos

Corequisites: EGYP W1101-W1102 or the instructor's permission. Advanced readings in ancient Egyptian texts. NYU course. Contact sc758@columbia.edu for more information.

Spring 2016: ADVANCED ARABIC GRAMMAR REVIEW

Call Number: 
63781
Points: 
3
Location: 
116 Knox Hall
Day/Time: 
MW 1:10pm-2:25pm
Instructor: 
Taoufik Ben-Amor

Spring 2016: ADVANCED SWAHILI II

Call Number: 
29729
Points: 
4
Location: 
414 Knox Hall
Day/Time: 
TR 12:00pm-1:50pm
Instructor: 
Abdul Nanji

Prerequisites: SWHL W1201-W1202 or the instructor's permission. An introduction to the advanced syntactical, morphological, and grammatical structures of Swahili grammar; detailed analysis of Swahili texts; practice in conversation.

Spring 2016: ADVANCED ZULU II

Call Number: 
77116
Points: 
3
Location: 
TBA
Day/Time: 
TR 2:40pm-3:55pm
Instructor: 
Sandra Sanneh

Prerequisites: ZULU W1201-W1202 or the instructor's permission. This course allows students to practice adanced structures of the Zulu language. Please note this course is offered by videoconference from Yale through the Shared Course Initiative. Contact ssw2117@columbia.edu for more information.

Spring 2016: Elementary Swahili II

Call Number: 
63341 and 72176
Points: 
4
Location: 
255 International Affairs Building
Day/Time: 
Tu Th 6:10-8:00pm
Instructor: 
Abdul Nanji

Essentials of grammar, basic vocabulary, practice in speaking and reading Swahili the most widely used indigenous language of East Africa. Swahili W1102

Spring 2016: Elementary Wolof II

Call Number: 
72197
Points: 
4
Location: 
352C International Affairs Building
Day/Time: 
M Tu W Th 12:00-12:50pm
Instructor: 
Mariame S Sy

Introduction to the basic grammatical structures of Wolof, a major language of West Africa spoken in Senegal and Gambia. Wolof W1102

Spring 2016: ELEMENTARY YORUBA II

Call Number: 
76293
Points: 
4
Location: 
352C International Affairs Building
Day/Time: 
MTWR 10:10am-11:00am
Instructor: 
Adeolu A Ademoyo

This course is designed to bring students with no background to a point where they can perform most basic linguistic functions in Yoruba, including greetings, likes/dislikes, telling about yourself, describing places and situations, all in appropriate time frames. The class uses a highly interactive classroom style, supplemented by extensive use of video – both prepared and student-produced – and other computer-assisted tools. Please note this course is offered by videoconferencing from Cornell as part of the Shared Course Initiative. Contact ssw2117@columbia.edu for more information.

Spring 2016: Elementary Zulu II

Call Number: 
25958
Points: 
4
Instructor: 
Sandra Sanneh

Introduces students to the basic structures of Zulu, a Bantu language spoken in South Africa, especially in the Zululand area of KwaZulu/Natal province. Zulu W1102

Spring 2016: FIRST YEAR ARABIC I

Call Number: 
17833 and 62697
Points: 
5
Location: 
101 Knox Hall
Day/Time: 
MTWR 8:50am-9:55am and MTWR 10:10am-11:15am
Instructor: 
Abeer Shaheen

Spring 2016: FIRST YEAR ARABIC II

Call Number: 
20484, 69308, 74063, and 74534
Points: 
5
Location: 
104 Knox Hall
Day/Time: 
MTWR 8:50am-9:55am, MTWR 10:10am-11:15am, MTWR 11:40am-12:45pm, or MTWR 2:40pm-3:45pm
Instructor: 
Reem Faraj, May Ahmar, or Faris Al Ahmad

An introduction to the language of classical and modern Arabic literature.

Spring 2016: FOURTH YEAR CLASSICAL ARABIC

Call Number: 
25454
Location: 
207 Knox Hall
Day/Time: 
TR 10:10am-12:00pm
Instructor: 
Youssef Nouhi

Prerequisites: MDES W4212. Through reading excerpts from thirteen essential works, starting with Jabarti's history of the French Campaign in Egypt to a chapter from al-Qur'an, students will be able to increase their fluency and accuracy in Arabic while working on reading text and being exposed to the main themes in Classical Arabic literature, acquire a sense of literary style over a period of fourteen centuries as well as literary analytical terminology and concepts. The texts are selections from essential works that the students will read in detail, write critical pieces, engage in discussion and have assignments which will expand their vocabulary, manipulation of advanced grammar concepts, and employing stylistic devices in their writing. This course will enable students to start doing research in classical Arabic sources and complements MESAAS's graduate seminar Readings in Classical Arabic. The course works with all four skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing). Arabic is the language of instruction.

Spring 2016: FOURTH YEAR MODERN ARABIC II

Call Number: 
63730
Location: 
C01 Knox Hall
Day/Time: 
MW 10:10am-12:00pm
Instructor: 
Taoufik Ben-Amor

Prerequisites: MDES W4212. Through reading articles and essays by Arab thinkers and intellectuals, students will be able to increase their fluency and accuracy in Arabic while working on reading text and being exposed to the main themes in Arab thought The course works with all four skills (listening, speaking, reading, and writing). Arabic is the language of instruction.

Spring 2016: INTERMEDIATE SWAHILI II

Call Number: 
67278
Points: 
4
Location: 
M W 407 Hamilton Hall, T Th 408 Hamilton Hall
Day/Time: 
M Tu W Th 10:10am-11:00am
Instructor: 
Abdul Nanji

Prerequisites: SWHL W1101-W1102 or the instructor's permission. A review of the essentials of Swahili grammar; detailed analysis of Swahili texts; practice in conversation.

Spring 2016: Intermediate Wolof II

Call Number: 
12780
Points: 
4
Instructor: 
Mariame S Sy

Prerequisites: WLOF W1101-W1102 or the instructor's permission. Further develops a student's knowledge of Wolof, a major language of West Africa spoken primarily in Senegal and Gambia. Wolof W1202

Spring 2016: INTERMEDIATE YORUBA II

Call Number: 
10040
Points: 
4
Location: 
352C International Affairs Building
Day/Time: 
MTWR 9:05am-9:55am
Instructor: 
Adeolu A Ademoyo

Prerequisites: YORU W1101-W1102 or the instructor's permission. In this course, learners will continue practicing all four language skills through every day dialogues, writing letters, and describing basic situations. In addition, they will be introduced to Yoruba literature and learn how to read and comprehend basic Yoruba texts, such as newspaper articles. Finally, they will be introduced to current affairs as well as social, artistic and, cultural events and issues in Nigeria. The class uses a highly interactive classroom style, supplemented by extensive use of video – both prepared and student-produced – and other computer-assisted tools. Please note this course is offered by videoconferencing from Cornell as part of the Shared Course Initiative. Contact ssw2117@columbia.edu for more information.

Spring 2016: INTERMEDIATE ZULU II

Call Number: 
28861
Location: 
TBA
Day/Time: 
MTWR 10:30am-11:20am
Instructor: 
Sandra Sanneh

Prerequisites: ZULU W1201-W1202 or the instructor's permission. Provides students with an in-depth review of the essentials of the Zulu grammar. Students are also able to practice their language skills in conversation.

Spring 2016: INTRO-ANCIENT EGYPTIAN LANG II

Call Number: 
62024
Points: 
3
Location: 
TBA
Day/Time: 
TBA
Instructor: 
Ogden Goelet, Stephane A Charitos

Introduction to hieroglyphics; readings in ancient Egyptian texts. NYU course. Contact sc758@columbia.edu for more information.

Spring 2016: Language and Society: Languages of Africa

Call Number: 
96197
Points: 
3
Location: 
717 Hamilton Hall
Day/Time: 
M W 11:40am-12:55pm
Instructor: 
John H McWhorter

How language structure and usage varies according to societal factors such as social history and socioeconomic factors, illustrated with study modules on language contact, language standardization and literacy, quantitative sociolinguistic theory, language allegiance, language, and power. Linguistics W4800

Spring 2016: SECOND YEAR ARABIC I

Call Number: 
67237
Location: 
101 Knox Hall
Day/Time: 
M Tu W Th 2:40pm-3:45pm
Instructor: 
Tarik Belhoussein

Spring 2016: SECOND YEAR ARABIC II

Call Number: 
19516, 20411, and 11288
Points: 
5
Location: 
101 Knox Hall
Day/Time: 
MTWR 10:10am-11:15am, MTWR 11:40am-12:45pm, or MTWR 4:10pm-5:15pm
Instructor: 
Abeer Shaheen, Faris Al Ahmad, or Tarik Belhoussein

Prerequisites: MDES W1210-W1211 or the equivalent. A continuation of the study of the language of contemporary writing.

Spring 2016: THIRD YEAR ARABIC II

Call Number: 
69884 and 22110
Location: 
116 Knox Hall
Day/Time: 
MTWR 8:50am-9:55am and MTWR 10:10am-11:15am
Instructor: 
Ouijdane Absi

Students in the regular third-year Arabic track improve reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills through close reading, compositions, class discussions, and presentations in Arabic on topics such as cultures of the Arab world, classical and modern Arabic literature, and contemporary Arabic media. Review of grammatical and syntactic rules as needed.


Africana Studies

Spring 2016: African Dance I

Call Number: 
02154
Points: 
0-1
Location: 
STU Marcellus Hartley Dodge Physical Fitness Center
Day/Time: 
Tu Th 9:30am-10:30am
Instructor: 
Maguette Camara

Prerequisites: Permission of instructor. Concentrates on the dances of West Africa, including Senegal, Mali, and Guinea, and a variety of dances performed at various functions and ceremonies. Explanation of the origin and meaning of each dance will be an integral part of the material presented. Dance BC2252 Go to CU Directory of Classes

Go to CU Directory of Classes

Spring 2016: Cinema and Society in Asia and Africa

Section: 
001
Call Number: 
76346
Points: 
3
Location: 
614 Schermerhorn Hall [SCH]
Day/Time: 
Tu Th 2:40pm-3:55pm
Instructor: 
Hamid Dabashi

Introduction to Middle Eastern cinema as a unique cultural product in which artistic sensibilities are mobilized to address, and thus reflect, significant aspects of contemporary society, Arab, Israeli, Turkish, and Iranian cinema. Cultural and collective expressions of some enduring concerns in modern Middle Eastern societies.

Spring 2016: Introduction to the African Diaspora

Call Number: 
93200
Points: 
3
Location: 
302 Barnard Hall
Day/Time: 
Tu Th 5:40pm-6:55pm
Instructor: 
Michael A Ralph
Interdisciplinary and thematic approach to the African diaspora in the Americas: its motivations, dimensions, consequences, and the importance and stakes of its study. Beginning with the contacts between Africans and the Portuguese in the 15th century, this class will open up diverse paths of inquiry as students attempt to answer questions, clear up misconceptions, and challenge assumptions about the presence of Africans in the 'New World.' AFRS2006X001
 

Spring 2016: Topics in the Black Experience

Call Number: 
71997
Points: 
4
Location: 
237 Milbank Hall (Barnard)
Day/Time: 
T 2:10pm-4:00pm
Instructor: 
C. Daniel Dawson

Topics in the Black Experience: Honey is my Knife-African Spirituality in the Americas. This seminar will investigate the cultural contributions of Africans in the formation of the contemporary Americas. There will be a particular focus on the African religious traditions that have continued and developed in spite of hostile social and political pressures. Because of their important roles in the continuations of African aesthetics, the areas of visual art, music and dance will be emphasized in the exploration of the topic. This seminar will also discuss two important African ethnic groups: the Yoruba of Southwestern Nigeria, and the Bakongo of Central Africa. It will highlight the American religious traditions of these cultures, e.g., Candomblé Nago/Ketu, Santeria/Lucumi, Shango, Xangô, etc., for the Yoruba, and Palo Mayombe, Umbanda, Macumba, Kumina, African-American Christianity, etc., for the Bakongo and other Central Africans. In the course discussions, the Americas are to include Brazil, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Jamaica, the United States and numerous other appropriate locations. There will also be a focus on visual artists like Charles Abramson, Jose Bedia, Juan Boza, Lourdes Lopez, Manuel Mendive, etc., whose works are grounded in African based religions. In addition, we will explore how African religious philosophy has impacted on every-day life in the Americas, for example in the areas of international athletics, procedures of greeting and degreeting, culinary practices, etc. This course will include presentations by three innovative guest scholars: it will also include an extensive use of audio-visual materials including slides, videos and audio recordings.


Architecture (GSAPP)

Spring 2016: African Cities

Call Number: 
86996
Points: 
3
Location: 
412 Avery Hall
Day/Time: 
1/19/16-3/4/16, MT 9:00am-11:00am
Instructor: 
Mpho Matsipa
ARCH6826
 

Art History

Spring 2016: Contemporary Arts of Africa

Call Number: 
29029
Points: 
3
Location: 
832 Schermerhorn Hall [SCH]
Day/Time: 
MW 4:10pm-5:25pm
Instructor: 
Zoe S Strother

This course takes up a question posed by Terry Smith and applies it to Africa: "Who gets to say what counts as contemporary art?" It will investigate the impact of modernity, modernism, and increasing globalism on artistic practices, with a special focus on three of the major centers for contemporary art: Senegal, South Africa, Nigeria. Some of the topics covered will be: the emergence of new media (such as photography or comics), experiments in Pan-Africanism, development of parallel modernities and class divides, diasporic consciousness, the creation of "national" cultures, biennial politics, and the emergence of international culture-brokers. We will be sensitive to differences in Francophone and Anglophone critical practice and discourse. Art History W4073


English and Comparative Literature

Spring 2016: African Civilization

Call Number: 
77199
Points: 
4
Location: 
420 Pupin Laboratories
Day/Time: 
TR 10:10am-12:00pm
Instructor: 
Rhiannon Stephens

This course provides a general introduction to some of the key intellectual debates in Africa by Africans through primary sources, including scholarly works, political tracts, fiction, art, and film. Beginning with an exploration of African notions of spiritual and philosophical uniqueness and ending with contemporary debates on the meaning and historical viability of an African Renaissance, this course explores the meanings of ‘Africa' and ‘being African.' African Civilization C1020


History Courses

Spring 2016: CHRISTIAN MISS-EARLY MOD WORLD

History W4155
Section: 
001
Call Number: 
78647
Points: 
0
Location: 
317 Hamilton Hall
Day/Time: 
T 10:10am-12:00pm
Instructor: 
Bronwen C McShea

This course follows the spread and transformation of Christianity by Western missionaries in American, African, and Asian settings, from the late fifteenth through early nineteenth centuries. We examine what missionaries preached and urged others to believe and practice, and also what motivated missionaries, mission converts, and those who resisted proselytization. We also examine missions as sites of intercultural and colonial encounters with long-term impacts on politics, wars, and social dynamics.

Go to CU Directory of Classes

Spring 2016: Intro to African History: 1700-Present

History BC1760
Section: 
001
Call Number: 
03717
Points: 
3
Location: 
504 Diana Center
Day/Time: 
MW 11:40am-12:55pm
Instructor: 
Abosede A George

Corequisites: Students who take this course may also take Introduction to Africa Studies: Africa Past, Present, and Future. Survey of African history from the 18th century to the contemporary period. We will explore six major themes in African History: Africa and the Making of the Atlantic World, Colonialism in Africa, the 1940s, Nationalism and Independence Movements, Post-Colonialism in Africa, and Issues in the Making of Contemporary Africa. History BC1760

Go to CU Directory of Classes

Spring 2016: PAN AFRICANISM

History: Middle East G4154
Section: 
001
Call Number: 
27579
Points: 
4
Location: 
418 International Affairs Building
Day/Time: 
R 2:10pm-4:00pm
Instructor: 
Mamadou Diouf

“Pan Africanist” ideologies were very diverse from Garveyism, Negritude to the various African America, Caribbean and African discourses of “neo-pharaohnism” and “Ethiopianism.”  This seminar explores how Black leaders, intellectuals, and artists chose to imagine Black (Africans and people of African descent) as a global community from the late 19th century to the present. It examines their attempts to chart a course of race, modernity, and emancipation in unstable and changing geographies of empire, nation, and state.  Particular attention will be given to manifestations identified as their common history and destiny and how such a distinctive historical experience has created a unique body of reflections on and cultural productions about modernity, religion, class, gender, and sexuality, in a context of domination and oppression.

Go to CU Directory of Classes

Spring 2016: Poverty in Africa: An Historical Perspective

History W4789
Section: 
001
Call Number: 
16876
Points: 
4
Location: 
311 Fayerweather
Day/Time: 
R 2:10pm-4:00pm
Instructor: 
Rhiannon Stephens

In this course we will explore in a critical manner the concept of poverty in Africa. The emphasis is on historicizing categories such as poverty and wealth, debt and charity and on the ways in which people in Africa have understood such categories. As such the course takes a longue durée approach spanning over a millennium of history, ending with contemporary understandings of poverty. History W4789

Go to CU Directory of Classes


International Affairs

Spring 2016: Global Food Systems

Call Number: 
26596
Points: 
3
Location: 
411 International Affairs Building
Day/Time: 
T 9:00am-10:50am
Instructor: 
Glenn Denning

Introduces and explores systems of producing and ensuring equitable access to food.  The course begins with an overview of the core bio-physical elements of food production: land and soil, water and biodiversity.  The course then surveys a selection of important smallholder farming systems that provide food and livelihoods for more than two billion people on the planet.  Building on this understanding, students will examine the underlying history, science and impact of the Asian Green Revolution that doubled global food supplies between 1970 and 1995. Country case studies from Asia and Africa will be examined to understand the roles of science, policies, politics, institutions and economics in advancing agriculture and food security. This course is restricted to MPA-DP students. Non-MPA-DP students interested in registering for this course should contact the instructor.  U6411

Spring 2016: Humanitarian Crisis-East Congo

Section: 
001
Call Number: 
67197
Points: 
1
Location: 
801 International Affairs Building
Day/Time: 
March 25 (F 1:00pm-5:00pm), March 26 (S 10:00am-2:00pm)
Instructor: 
Dennis Dijkzeul

Over the past decade, perhaps no area of the world has seen such violent transformations and complex conflicts as Africa's Great Lakes Region. This 1-credit course focuses on the conflicts and humanitarian assistance in two Eastern Congolese provinces, Kivu Sud and Kivu Nord. Extrapolations based on IRC studies estimate an excess mortality in Eastern DR Congo of over 4 million people out of a total population of about 20 million over the last ten years. The neighboring countries of Eastern Congo, Rwanda, Burundi, and Uganda all play a role in this conflict. Moreover, they have also endured their own forms of traumatic upheaval and are still searching for a form of stability. This course asks why these conflicts endured for so long? What are the root causes? What happens when a state bureaucracy breaks down? What happens to the health care and educational systems? Can solutions be found? What is the role of the humanitarian organizations vis-à-vis the local population, civil society, and the local administration? The first part of the course gives an historical overview of the crises, and explains the current political situation, including forms of violence, exploitation, abuse and coping in the broader context of conflict in the Great Lakes region. The second part talks about the (limited) role of the humanitarian organizations, it especially focuses on problems in the areas of health and, to a lesser extent, education. Finally, this part will also look at some future scenarios. The course is based on Dennis Dijkzeul's research in Eastern Congo. The overall aim of the course is to help students to understand the situation in Eastern Congo and how humanitarian organizations intervene.

Spring 2016 Course Dates: Mar. 25 & 26

Go to CU Directory of Classes

Spring 2016: Political Economy of Development

Call Number: 
72397
Points: 
3
Location: 
403 International Affairs Building
Day/Time: 
T 2:10pm-4:00pm
Instructor: 
Christopher Blattman

This course tackles the big questions and theories in development through the case of sub-Saharan Africa. We compare development patterns within Africa, but understand the continent (and the process of development) by comparing it to the Americas, Asia, and (to some extent) the development of the West.

Go to CU Directory of Classes

Spring 2016: The UN Past and Present

Call Number: 
91848
Points: 
3
Location: 
402 International Affairs Building
Day/Time: 
R 11:00am-12:50pm
Instructor: 
John Hirsch

The United Nations Past and Present examines the transformation of the United Nations over the past seventy years with a focus on contemporary efforts to promote international peace and security, development and human rights. With the global availability of the internet and social media, the challenges facing the United Nations from the migration crisis in the Middle East and Africa and climate change to the Ebola crisis require a more coordinated international response. The emergence of major power centers in Asia, Africa and Latin America as well as of non-state actors ranging from international NGOs to multinational corporations create both opportunities and challenges for the United Nations system. The recent adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (2015-2030) reflects a new awareness of our interconnected global politics. (Consult with IAS for specialization credit) U8504


Law

Spring 2016: The Law of Genocide

Call Number: 
L6459
Points: 
2
Day/Time: 
W 4:20pm-6:10pm
Instructor: 
Menachem Rosensaft

In this course, we will begin by examining the historical, philosophical and political origins of statutes that outlaw crimes against humanity and genocide. We will then focus on the first post-World War II trial of the SS personnel at the Nazi concentration camps of Bergen-Belsen and Auschwitz, followed by the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg (the "IMT"); the Eichmann Trial in Jerusalem; the trial in Tel Aviv of the head of the Jewish police of a Polish ghetto; proceedings before the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (the "ICTY"), and the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (the "ICTR"). We will also examine and discuss the origins and impact of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, and consider the development of the law relating to genocide and crimes against humanity over the course of the past 70 years and its contemporary implications. A research paper will constitute the principal component of the course evaluation (consult with IAS for specialization credit). http://web.law.columbia.edu/courses/sections/19720#.VmB1uRaFPct


Political Science

Spring 2016: CONTEMPORARY AFRICAN POLITICS

Call Number: 
72301
Points: 
3
Location: 
C01 Knox Hall
Day/Time: 
TR 10:10am-11:25am
Instructor: 
Kimuli Kasara

Prerequisites: POLS V1501 or the equivalent, or the instructor's permission. Topics include the transition from colonialism to independence, ethnic and class relations, the state, strategies for development, international influences, and case studies of selected countries. 

Spring 2016: Urban Violence

Call Number: 
09620
Points: 
4
Location: 
227 Milbank Hall (Barnard)
Day/Time: 
T 4:10pm-6:00pm
Instructor: 
Eduardo Moncada

This course has two overarching objectives. The first objective is to examine and critically assess existing theories of the drivers, functions, and consequences of urban crime and violence.  The second objective is to situate existing research within a broader range of classic and emerging political science research on state building, institutions, democracy,  development, and conflict. The methodological emphasis of the course is comparative analysis, and therefore empirical material will largely draw on analyses of crime and violence in Latin America and Africa, and the United States. BC3501


Featured Courses