African Studies Program (AFST)

AFST 050 World Musics and Cultures

Draws on repertories of various societies from Asia, Africa, Europe, and the Americas to examine relations between aesthetic productions and social processes. We investigate musical sounds, cultural logics informing those sounds, and social strategies of performance. Topics may include indigenous music theories, music and social organization, symbolic expressions and musical meaning, gender, religion, and social change.

For BA Students: Arts and Letters Sector

Taught by: Muller

One-term course offered either term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

AFST 140 Elementary Zulu I in Residence

This elementary course is for beginners and it requires no prior knowledge of Zulu. The course will expose students to the Zulu language and culture and will be based in the National Standards for Foreign Language Learning. Students will be engaged in communicative language learning through interpersonal, interpretive and presentational modes of language learning techniques. They will gain knowledge and understanding of the Zulu culture. They will use their Zulu language and culture learning experience to connect with other disciplines and further their knowledge of these disciplines through perspectives acquired from their Zulu class. They will also develop insight into the nature of language and culture through comparisons of the Zulu language and culture and their own. Through movies, songs, and other cultural activities online students will acquire the natural use of the language which will enable them to acquire linguistic and cultural skill to become life-long learners who can participate in Zulu communities in the U.S. and overseas.

Taught by: Mbeje

One-term course offered either term

Activity: Lecture

0.5 Course Units

Notes: OBJECTIVE: Attainment of Level 1 (ceiling) in speaking, listening, reading, and writing skills on the Interagency Language Roundtable (ILR) scale.

AFST 170 Elementary Yoruba I

The Elementary Yoruba I course can be taken to fulfill a language requirement, or for linguistic preparation to do research on Nigeria and the diaspora/Africa-related topics. The course emphasizes communicative competence to enable the students to acquire linguistic and extra-linguistic skills in Yoruba. The content of the course is selected from various everyday life situations to enable the students to communicate in predictable common daily settings. Culture, as it relates to language use, is also part of the course content. Students will acquire the speaking, listening, reading, and writing skills at the mid-high novice level, based on the ACTFL scale. The mid-high novice level proficiency skills that the students will acquire constitute threshold capabilibilities of the second semester range of proficiency to prepare students for Elementary Yoruba II course materials.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Awoyale

Course usually offered in fall term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 171 Elementary Yoruba II

The main objective of this course is to further sharpen the Yoruba linquistic knowledge that the student acquired in level I. By the end of the course, the student should be able to (1) read, write, and understand simple to moderately complex sentences in Yoruba; and, (2) advance in the knowledge of the Yoruba culture.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Awoyale

Course usually offered in spring term

Prerequisites: Completion of Elementary Yoruba I, or permission of instructor

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 180 Elementary Swahili I

The Elementary Swahili I course can be taken to fulfill a language requirement, or for linguistic preparation to do research on East Africa/Africa-related topics. The course emphasizes communicative compentence to enable the students to acquire linguistic and extra-linguistic skills in Swahili. The content of the course is selected from various everyday life situations to enable the students to communicate in predictable common daily settings. Culture, as it relates to language use, is also part of the course content. Students will acquire the speaking, listening, reading, and writing skills at the mid-high novice level, based on the ACTFL scale. The mid-high level proficiency skills that the students will acquire constitute threshold capabilities of the second semester range of proficiency to prepare students for Elementary Swahili II course materials.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Mshomba

Course usually offered in fall term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 181 Elementary Swahili II

This course continues to introduce basic grammar, vocabulary, and the reading and writing of Swahili to new speakers. During this term, folktales, other texts, and film selections are used to help introduce important aspects of Swahili culture and the use of the language in wide areas of Africa.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Mshomba

Course usually offered in spring term

Prerequisites: Completion of Elementary Swahili I, or permission of instructor

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 190 Introduction to Africa

This course provides an introduction to the study of Africa in all its diversity and complexity. Our focus is cultural, geographical, and historical: we will seek to understand Africa s current place in the world political and economic order and learn about the various social and physical factors that have influenced the historical trajectory of the continent. We study the cultural formations and empires that emerged in Africa before European colonial invasion and then how colonialism reshaped those sociocultural forms. We ll learn about the unique kinds of kinship and religion in precolonial Africa and the changes brought about by the spread of Islam and Christianity. Finally, we ll take a close look at contemporary issues such as ethnic violence, migration, popular culture and poverty, and we'll debate the various approaches to understanding those issues.

For BA Students: Society Sector

Taught by: Hasty

Course usually offered in fall term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

AFST 221 African Women's Lives: Past and Present

Restoring women to African history is a worthy goal, but easier said than done.The course examines scholarship over the past forty years that brings to light previously overlooked contributions African women have made to political struggle, religious change, culture preservation, and economic development from pre-colonial times to present. The course addresses basic questions about changing women's roles and human rights controversies associated with African women within the wider cultural and historical contexts in which their lives are lived. It also raises fundamental questions about sources, methodology, and representation, including the value of African women's oral and written narrative and cinema production as avenues to insider perspectives on African women's lives.

Taught by: Blakely

Course not offered every year

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

AFST 240 Elementary Amharic I

The Elementary Amharic I course can be taken to fulfill a language requirement, or for linguistic preparation to do research on Ethiopia/Africa-related topics. The course emphasizes communicative competence to enable the students to acquire linguistic and extra-linguistic skills in Amharic. The content of the course is selected from various everyday life situations to enable the students to communicate in predictable common daily settings. Culture, as it relates to language use, is also part of the course content. Students will acquire the speaking, listening, reading, and writing skills at the mid-high novice level, based on the ACTFL scale. The mid-high novice level proficiency skills that the students will acquire constitute threshold capabilities of the second semester range of proficiency to prepare students for Elementary Amharic II course materials.

For BA Students: Language Course

Course usually offered in fall term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 241 Elementary Amharic II

Continuation of Elementary Amharic I. Amharic belongs to the southern branch of Hemeto-Semitic languages, which is also referred to as "Afrasian." Amharic is the official language of Ethiopia and is spoken by 14 million native Amharas and by approximately 18 million of the other groups in Ethiopia. This course continues to introduce basic grammar, vocabulary, and the reading and writing of Amharic to new speakers.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Hailu

Course usually offered in spring term

Prerequisites: Completion of Elementary Amharic I, or permission of the instructor

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 242 Intermediate Amharic I

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Hailu

Course usually offered in fall term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 243 Intermediate Amharic II

For BA Students: Last Language Course

Taught by: Hailu

Course usually offered in spring term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 247 Advanced Amharic

An advanced Amharic course that will further sharpen the students' knowledge of the Amharic language and the culture of the Amharas. The learners communicative skills will be further developed through listening, speaking, reading and writing. There will also be discussions on cultural and political issues.

For BA Students: Advanced Language Course

Taught by: Zemichael

One-term course offered either term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 270 Intermediate Yoruba I

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Awoyale

Course usually offered in fall term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 271 Intermediate Yoruba II

For BA Students: Last Language Course

Taught by: Awoyale

Course usually offered in spring term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 280 Intermediate Swahili I

The objectives of this course are: to strengthen students' knowledge of speaking, listening, reading, and writing Swahili and to compare it with the language of the students; to learn more about the cultures of East Africa and to compare it with the culture(s) of the students; to consider the relationship between that knowledge and the knowledge of other disciplines; and using that knowledge, to unite students with communities outside of class.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Mshomba

Course usually offered in fall term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 281 Intermediate Swahili II

At the end of the course students will be at Level 2 on the ILR (Interagency Language Roundtable) scale.

For BA Students: Last Language Course

Taught by: Mshomba

Course usually offered in spring term

Prerequisites: Intermediate Swahili I, or permission of instructor

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through the Penn Language Center

AFST 284 Advanced Swahili I

This is an advanced Kiswahili course which will engage learners in extended spoken and written discourse. Advanced learners of Kiswahili will listen to, read about, write and speak on authentic video materials, contemporary novels, and newspapers. They will also participate in various discussions on cultural and political issues.

For BA Students: Advanced Language Course

Taught by: Mshomba

Course usually offered in fall term

Prerequisites: AFST 280, LING 280, AFRC 280 or permission of instructor

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 285 Advanced Swahili II

The objectives are to continue to strengthen students' knowledge of speaking, listening, reading, and writing Swahili and to compare it with the language of the students; to continue learning about the cultures of East Africa and to continue making comparisons with the culture(s) of the students; to continue to consider the relationship between that knowledge and the knowledge of other disciplines; and using that knowledge, to continue to unite students with communities outside of class. Level 3 on the ILR (Interagency Language Roundtable) scale.

For BA Students: Advanced Language Course

Taught by: Mshomba

Course usually offered in spring term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 370 Advanced Yoruba I

For BA Students: Advanced Language Course

Taught by: Awoyale

Course usually offered in fall term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 371 Advanced Yoruba II

For BA Students: Advanced Language Course

Taught by: Awoyale

Course usually offered in spring term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 460 Middle Egyptian

Introduction to the grammar of Middle Egyptian.

Taught by: Silverman

Two terms. student must enter first term.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

AFST 467 Introduction to Egyptian Culture and Archaeology

Covers principal aspects of ancient Egyptian culture (environment, urbanism, religion, technology, etc.) with special focus on archaeological data; includes study of University Museum artifacts. Follows AMES 266/466 - History of Egypt taught in the Fall semester.

Taught by: Wegner

Course usually offered in spring term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

AFST 470 Twi Language & Culture I

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

AFST 471 Twi Language & Culture II

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

AFST 484 Swahili Lang/Culture I

This course taught in Swahili will focus on reading/writing skills and speaking/listening skills as well as structural and cultural information. The course will be structured around three thematic units: History, Politics, and Education. The course will provide background on the Swahili-speaking world: Who were the first Swahili speakers and what varieties of the language did they speak? How did Swahili spread from the coast to other Swahili-speaking areas as far inland as Uganda, Rwanda, and Congo? Swahili is a lingua franca and has importance in the spread of religion and trade movements. Influences of other languages on Swahili and influences of Swahili on local languages will be discussed. Political and educational systems will be discussed as well.

For BA Students: Advanced Language Course

Taught by: Mshomba

Course not offered every year

Prerequisite: Completion of Advanced Swahili I & II

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

AFST 486 Yoruba Language & Culture I

Taught by: Awoyale

Course not offered every year

Prerequisites: Completion of Advanced Yoruba I & II.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 487 Yoruba Language & Culture II

Taught by: Awoyale

One-term course offered either term

Prerequisites: Completion of Advanced Yoruba I & II.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

AFST 490 African Language Tutorial - Elementary I

The main objective of this course is to allow students to study an African language of their choice, depending on the availability of the instructor. The course will provide students with linquistics tools which will facilitate their research work in the target country. Cultural aspects of the speakers of the language will be introduced and reinforced.

For BA Students: Language Course

One-term course offered either term

Prerequisite: Permission of Penn Language Center

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 491 African Language Tutorial - Elementary II

Continuation of AFST 490.

For BA Students: Language Course

One-term course offered either term

Prerequisite: Permission of Penn Language Center

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 492 African Language Tutorial - Intermediate I

Intermediate level courses in a variety of African languages: Igbo, Shona, Wolof, Malagasy, Chichewa, Setswana, Manding, Afrikaans, Setswana. Focus on oral proficiency and productive language skills. All course are langauge specfic and follow ACTFL proficiency guidelines.

For BA Students: Language Course

Course usually offered in fall term

Prerequisite: Permission of Penn Language Center

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 493 African Language Tutorial - Intermediate II

Continuation of AFST 492.

For BA Students: Last Language Course

Course usually offered in spring term

Prerequisite: Permission of Penn Language Center

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 494 African Language Tutorial - Advanced I

Language specific sections for students interested in doing country-specific research in a target language. Courses cover project-based skills for AFST research.

For BA Students: Advanced Language Course

Course usually offered in fall term

Prerequisite: Permission of Penn Language Center

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 495 African Language Tutor: Adv II Languages will be specified in each section.

Continuation of AFST 494.

Course usually offered in spring term

Prerequisite: Permission of Penn Language Center

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

AFST 496 Lanugage & Culture I

Aspects of the targeted language's history, language, and culture.

For BA Students: Language Course

Course usually offered in fall term

Prerequisites: Permission of Penn Language Center.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered Through Penn Language Center

AFST 497 Language & Culture II

Continuation of AFST 496.

Course usually offered in spring term

Prerequisites: Permission of Penn Language Center.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Langauge Center

AFST 509 Arabic: Reading Historical Manuscripts

Arabic language is used by many societies not only in communication but also in correspondence and in documenting the affairs of their daily lives. Arabic script is adopted by many groups who native languages are not Arabic, in writing their language before some moved to the roman alphabet. In many historical documents specific style of writing and handwriting are dominant. This specificity is influenced by the dialectical variations, the historical development of each region and the level of Arabic literacy and use.

Course not offered every year

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

AFST 517 Elementary Yoruba I

This is an introductory course in Yoruba whose goals are to introduce students to the history, geographical location of the people who speak Yoruba, their culture, customs, and traditions; and, to enable students to develop communicative skills through listening, speaking, reading and writing.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Awoyale

Course usually offered in fall term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 518 Elementary Yoruba II

The main objective of this course is to further sharpen the Yoruba linquistic knowledge that the student acquired in level I. By the end of the course, the student should be able to (1) read, write, and understand simple to moderately complex sentences in Yoruba; and (2) advance in the knowledge of the Yoruba culture.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Awoyale

Course usually offered in spring term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 529 Intermediate Yoruba I

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Awoyale

Course usually offered in fall term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 532 Intermediate Yoruba II

For BA Students: Last Language Course

Taught by: Awoyale

Course usually offered in spring term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 540 Elementary Amharic I

An introductory course for students with no previous knowledge of Amharic. Amharic belongs to the southern branch of Hemeto-Semitic languages which is also referred to as "Afrasian." Amharic is the official language of Ethiopia and is spoken by 14 million native Amharas and by approximately 18 million of the other ethic groups in Ethiopia. The goals of this course are to introduce students to the culture, customs, and traditions of the Amharas. Students will develop communicative skills through listening, speaking, reading and writing.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Hailu

Course usually offered in fall term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 541 Elementary Amharic II

Continuation of Elementary Amharic I.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Hailu

Course usually offered in spring term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 543 Intermediate Amharic I

Offered through Penn Language Center

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Hailu

Course usually offered in fall term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

AFST 544 Intermediate Amharic II

Offered through Penn Language Center

For BA Students: Last Language Course

Taught by: Hailu

Course usually offered in spring term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

AFST 547 Advanced Amharic

An advanced Amharic course that will further sharpen the students' knowledge of the Amharic language and the culture of the Amharas. The learners communicative skills will be further developed through listening, speaking, reading and wwriting. There will also be discussions on cultural and political issues.

For BA Students: Advanced Language Course

Taught by: Hailu

One-term course offered either term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 580 Elementary Swahili I

Beginning level of Swahili which provides training and practice in speaking, reading and writing with initial emphasis on speaking and listening. Basic grammar, vocabulary and cultural skills learned gradually with priority on the spoken language. Especially during the second term, folktales, other texts and films will be used to help introduce important aspects of Swahili culture.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Mshomba

Course usually offered in fall term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 581 Elementary Swahili II

This course continues to introduce basic grammar, vocabulary, and the reading and writing of Swahili to new speakers. During this term, folktales, other texts, and film selections are used to help introduce important aspects of Swahili culture and the use of the language in wide areas of Africa.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Mshomba

Course usually offered in spring term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 582 Intermediate Swahili I

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Mshomba

Course usually offered in fall term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 583 Intermediate Swahili II

For BA Students: Last Language Course

Taught by: Mshomba

Course usually offered in spring term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 584 Advanced Swahili I

This is an advanced Kiswahili course which will engage learners in extended spoken and written discourse. Advanced learners of Kiswahili will listen to, read about, write and speak on authentic video materials, contemporary novels, and newspapers. They will also participate in various discussions on cultural and political issues.

For BA Students: Advanced Language Course

Taught by: Mshomba

One-term course offered either term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 586 Advanced Swahili II

For BA Students: Advanced Language Course

Taught by: Mshomba

One-term course offered either term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 587 Advanced Yoruba I

For BA Students: Advanced Language Course

Course usually offered in fall term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

AFST 588 Advanced Yoruba II

For BA Students: Advanced Language Course

Taught by: Awoyale

Course usually offered in spring term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through Penn Language Center

AFST 594 Afr Lang Tutor: Elem I

For BA Students: Language Course

Course usually offered in fall term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

AFST 595 African Language Tutorial - Elementary II

For BA Students: Language Course

Course not offered every year

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

AFST 597 African Language Tutorial - Intermediate II

For BA Students: Last Language Course

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

AFST 598 Maninka-Afr Lang Adv I

Language specific sections for students interested in doing country-specific research in a target language. Courses cover project-based skills for AFST research.

For BA Students: Advanced Language Course

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

AFST 649 Amharic Lang & Culture

For BA Students: Advanced Language Course

One-term course offered either term

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit