Graduate Minor in Black Studies
Department of Black Studies
313 Gentry Hall
About the Department of Black Studies
The central mission of Black Studies is to prepare students to critically understand, conduct research, and interpret the complex histories, societies, and cultures of people of African descent in the United States, Africa and the Diaspora.
The Department’s interdisciplinary design encourages specialization within the University of Missouri’s broad liberal arts curriculum. As a result, students and faculty may conduct research that develops new or builds upon existing concepts, theories, and approaches to the study of the evolving experiences and contributions of the African Diaspora. In so doing, Black Studies prepares students to participate competently in diverse and competitive global societies where they may contribute viable practical solutions to critical challenges on multiple levels.
Affiliates of the Black Studies
The Department of Black Studies encourages the use of diverse curricular offerings throughout many different departments. Faculty members and affiliates of the department design new ways to incorporate topics of Black Studies in their courses. Departments affiliating with Black Studies include art, educational leadership and policy analysis, English, history, human development and family studies, journalism, law, music, political science, religious studies, romance languages, sociology, theatre, and women and gender studies.
The Walter Daniel Resource Center is supported by an endowment set up by the estate of the late Dr. Walter C. Daniel. Dr. Daniel came to the University of Missouri in 1973 as its first vice chancellor. He was instrumental in helping to reorganize the University’s administration. However, his success as an administrator never overshadowed his love of teaching and working with students. Located in 328 Gentry Hall, the books, periodicals, reference materials and media resources in this center will supplement and complement existing university resources on the histories, cultures, and societies of people of African descent in Africa, the U.S., and throughout the Diaspora available to the University community. Additionally, the center houses Dr. Daniel’s extensive private library of African American literature, as well as an extensive collection of primary and secondary sources including numerous periodicals and scholarly journals. The library also offers a small video collection which can be viewed on site. At the present time the library is a read-only research facility.
Plan of Study
An individual program of specialization in Black Studies may be arranged within the framework of a conventional graduate degree in any one of several fields. The options within a regular degree program are employed to include maximum exposure to courses emphasizing the diverse histories, cultures, and societies of people of African descent in Africa, the U.S., and throughout the Black Diaspora. Courses outside the major department, but in related fields, are incorporated into the student’s study plan. Students interested in pursuing a Black Studies specialty within their chosen fields should consult a departmental advisor, who is an affiliate of the Department of Black Studies, to assist in course selection. Lacking such an advisor, students should contact the Chair of the Department of Black Studies for assistance or send an email to Mary Beth Brown in the Department of Black Studies.