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Africana Studies

Africana Studies is devoted to the academic study of the history, culture and politics of African, African American, Afro-Latin, Afro-Caribbean and Afro-European populations. This interdisciplinary program employs analytical tools from fields such as Sociology, Literature, and History to explore important social issues facing people of African descent in continental Africa and throughout the African Diaspora.

The Department of Africana Studies encourages research and scholarship in many dimensions of African and African American experiences. The faculty and staff feel that the task of bringing about needed changes in this society rests with those who are intellectually prepared.

The department also seeks connections with the community -black, white and other- in Cincinnati. A commitment to social activism has been, is, and always should be a dimension of a program based in large part on justice.

The UC Arts and Sciences Department of Africana Studies offers:

News and Announcements

$750,000 Secured for Locally-Led Preservation Project!

$750,000 - 1

Our faculty just helped secure $750,000 for the restoration of the United Colored American Cemetery! Africana Studies is proud to Partner with Union Baptist Church in this locally-led preservation project fund by the National Parks Service as part of the Historic Preservation Fund History of Equal Rights grant program!


Black FUTURE Month

Celebrate Black FUTURE Month, 29 days of experiences in Feburary with Africana Studies, the Charles P. Taft Research Center, the College of A&S, the AACRC, and our partners on campus and across Greater Cincinnati!

Find all our events on our Dymanic Calendar (Picutre) or on our Full Calendar Details (Text) and we hope to see you there!

2024 Africana Studies Spring Course Offerings

Registration for the Spring 2024 semester is now open!

Check out the Department of Africana Studies Spring 2024 course offerings: Africana Studies Spring Courses List and Register Today for Spring Classes!

2023 Friends of Africana Studies Gala of Giving

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Thank you for an unforgettable evening at the 2023 Friends of Africana Studies Gala of Giving at Ludlow Wines!

New Faculty

Felicia Bishop Denaud

Felicia Denaud is a 2022 graduate of Brown University. Her research revolves around a broad spectrum of intellectual discourse, including 20th century Black Radical Political Thought, Critical Theory, Theories of Black Feminism, Revolution and Revolt in the Black Diaspora, and Black Women’s Written, Visual, and Performance Art, across the Diaspora. Dr. Denaud is an important addition to the department. A big welcome to Dr. Denaud and her family to Cincinnati and the Department of Africana Studies.  

Holly Y. McGee

We are pleased to welcome Dr. Holly Y. McGee, to the Department of Africana Studies. A 2011 graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Dr. McGee is an Associate Professor of U.S History, with a minor in African American, South African History, and Women’s Studies. She is the author of Radical Antiapartheid Internationalism and Exile: The Life of Elizabeth Mafeking (Routledge Press, 2019) and One day we are Going Home: The Long Exile of Elizabeth Mafeking (Sentia Publishing, 2020).

AFST Faculty in the Community & Beyond

Professor Guy-Lucien Whembolua was a speaker at the inaugural Black Male Summit on Saturday at the University of Cincinnati on April 7th, 2022, where he spoke on the subject of Black Men Mental Health and Awareness. 

The News Record Article on the Black Male Summit Event.

On November 23rd, 2021, Professor Edward Wallace was interviewed by The News Record, on the subject of “Health Disparities in Marginalized Populations.” 

On September 18th, 2021, Professor Edward Wallace was a panelist on the television program, Let’s Talk Cincy which focused on “Ending High Rates of Infant Mortality in the Black Community.” 

Cassandra L. Jones, Ph.D.

Cassandra L. Jones, Ph.D. Assistant Professor of Africana Studies and an affiliate faculty member in Film and Media Studies and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies received the Taft Center Research Fellow for 2020-2021. During her fellowship, she will be completing her manuscript, Memory and Liberation in Black Women’s Speculative Fiction, under contract with Ohio State University Press for the New Suns: Race, Gender, and Sexuality in the Speculative series. The book explores memory and decolonization found in tropes of alien invasion, time travel, and rootworking in the speculative fiction of authors such as Octavia E. Butler, Tananarive Due, and Nnedi Okorafor.  

Edward Wallace

Edward Wallace, Ph.D. Associate Professor appeared on WCPO TV, Cincinnati, Ohio, where he discussed why Blacks are dying from the Coronavirus at higher rates than whites.

His interview on Emerging Trend: Blacks Are Dying from Coronavirus at Higher Rates appeared in the Loveland Beacon Online Newspaper, from-coronavirus-at-higher-rates/

In two separate interviews with the Cincinnati Herald, Dr. Wallace discussed why Blacks are more likely to have diabetes, high blood pressure, and cardiovascular disease making them more susceptible to contracting COVID-19 and why he thinks African American Health Disparities will remain post COVID-19. 

Professor Whembolua

Guy-Lucien Whembolua, Ph.D. Associate Professor received the 2020 Excellence in Undergraduate Research Mentoring Award. The award recognizes faculty members for their support and encouragement to students interested in pursuing graduate education. 

Together with Dr. Chism, Mr. Ward, Mrs. Nessa and Mrs. Segovia, Professor Whembolua served as a Panelist for the Webinar on the impact of COVID-19 on Education, Staff, Students and Families organized by the Citizens and Community Creating Change on July 25, 2020.

Charles L. Jones, PhD. After five years leading the department, Dr. Jones stepped down as head of Africana Studies on August 15th, 2020. He is succeeded by Dr. Joseph Takougang, who previously served as head of Africana Studies, and later, as Associate Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.


Dr. Charles Jones

After nearly four decades as an educator, Dr. Charles E. Jones III retired from the University of Cincinnati on April 30th, 2022. Prior to his arrival at the University of Cincinnati in September of 2011, Dr. Jones was an Assistant Professor of Political Science at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia, and later, was the Founding Chair of the Department of African American Studies at Georgia State University, from 1994 to 2011.  Dr. Jones served as head of the Department of Africana Studies at the University of Cincinnati from 2015 to 2022. We thank him for his service, and the impact he left on the lives of his students,  the department of Africana Studies, and the entire University of Cincinnati community.

Nancy Nzobigeza posing in her graduation cap in front a UC Sign

Nancy Nzobigeza is a 2019 graduate of the University of Cincinnati. She earned a BS in Biological Sciences and two certificates, including a certificate in African studies from the Department of Africana Studies. She will be attending medical school at American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine in fall 2020.


What is Social Justice?

April 3, 2024

As societal challenges grow in impact and urgency, this UC multidisciplinary program is tailored for students who want to have an impact on the world. The College of Arts and Sciences has introduced a Bachelor of Arts in Social Justice major, a collaborative initiative amongst the arts and sciences.


What is Africana Studies?

February 29, 2024

In the Africana studies major within UC’s College of Arts and Sciences, you will explore a variety of approaches to understand the experiences of African, African American, Afro-Latin, Afro-Caribbean, and Afro-European populations globally. This interdisciplinary program blends tools from sociology, psychology, literature, anthropology, politics, and history to address social issues affecting people of African descent across continents and diasporas.


Preserving the past: Archivist speaks on preserving Black...

Event: February 22, 2024 6:30 PM

As part of its full slate of Black Future Month events, UC welcomes Meredith Evans, director of the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library in Atlanta, for a special lecture on the power and significance of archival history for the future of Black communities in America.


Three A&S alumni to be highlighted at 10th annual Onyx & Ruby...

February 9, 2024

UC will be celebrating alumni excellence at the 10th Onyx & Ruby Gala on Saturday, Feb. 17, 2024, hosted by the African American Alumni Affiliate. This black-tie affair, a highlight of the UC Alumni Association's annual events, recognizes the achievements of Black alumni, faculty, staff, and students, awarding them with prestigious honors.

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Department Contact Information

Department of Africana Studies
University of Cincinnati
PO Box 210370
3428 French Hall West
Cincinnati, OH 45221-0370
PH: (513) 556-0350
FAX: (513) 556-6771

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