Introduction to African Culture

Centre of West African Studies, School of History and Cultures

College of Arts and Law


Code 24292

Level of study First Year

Credit value 20

Semester 1 and 2

Module description

This module introduces students to the study and appreciation of African cultures. It emphasises diversity, complexity and dynamism of culture across the continent, and challenges easy – and essentially racist – notions of a homogeneous African cultural world. We have all seen the painted tribesmen and the drums, the starving children, the guerrilla war footage. Almost as pernicious, however, is the ‘roots’ romance view of an Africa that was/is unfailingly just, communalistic and peaceful. This module will disabuse students of simplifications and distortions, while beginning to equip them with the knowledge and skills they will require in order to enjoy, appreciate and intelligently discuss aspects of African culture. Students will be expected to attend and write about a series of cultural events organised within CWAS.