African American Studies at Princeton

The Department of African American Studies at Princeton University provides an exciting and innovative model for teaching and research about African-descended people, with a central focus on their experiences in the United States. We embody this mission in a curriculum that reflects the complex interplay between the political, economic, and cultural forces that shape our understanding of the historic achievements and struggles of African-descended people in this country and around the world.


Department News

AAS Graduate Certificate Students Awarded Fellowships in Support of Independent Research

This spring several Princeton University graduate students pursuing graduate certification in the Department of African American Studies earned awards and fellowships to support continued research in African American Studies and intersecting fields. The graduate certificate provides an opportunity for graduate students to complement doctoral studies in their home department with coordinated interdisciplinary training in African American Studies.

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Princeton University names West College for Toni Morrison, Robert F. Goheen Professor in the Humanities, Emerita

Princeton University’s trustees have approved recommendations to name West College, a prominent and central campus building, for the Nobel laureate Toni Morrison, an emeritus faculty member at Princeton. Morrison taught creative writing at Princeton for many years. Each year the department hosts a lecture series in her honor.

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Professor Anna Arabindan-Kesson Awarded ACLS Collaborative Research Fellowship

The product of Arabindan-Kesson’s and Bagneris’s collaboration will be a coauthored book that will redefine early African diaspora art history by revealing and reconsidering the varying entanglements of artists of African descent—and the art histories they have often been written out of—and offer a model for breaking new ground in the field.

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How race measures up in the United States today, in black and white

Unemployment May 2016

African American Unemployment Rate is at or Below its Pre-Recession Level Indiana, Michigan, Mississippi, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas
Hispanic Unemployment Rate is at or Below its Pre-Recession Level California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, New York, and North Carolina
White Unemployment Rate is at or Below its Pre-Recession Level in 24 states
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Wealth 2015

African American Household Earning Between $25,000 and $50,000 Emergency savings of $400
Hispanic Household Earning Between $25,000 and $50,000 Emergency savings of $700
White Household Earning Between $25,000 and $50,000 Emergency savings of $2100
Source: The Pew Charitable Trusts

Poverty 2014

States with Greatest African American Poverty Rate Iowa, Maine, Mississippi, and Wisconsin
States with Greatest Hispanic Poverty Rate Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, North Carolina, and Rhode Island
States with Greatest White Poverty Rate Arizona, Arkansas, Kentucky, New Mexico, Tennessee, Texas, and West Virginia
Source: United States Census Bureau