African-American Literature and Cultural Studies
African American music has long served as the subject of and inspiration for a broad range of black critical and cultural practices. This course will use the music and the discourses it has inspired as a means of exploring several central concerns of African American literary and cultural study. Among these are questions of national identity, cultural value, authenticity, tradition, innovation, improvosation, hybridity and commodification. Readings will include fiction, non-fiction, criticism and theory by Gerald Early, George Lipsitz, Angela Davis, Jean Toomer, Ralph Ellison, Hazel Carby, Houston Baker, Eric Lott, Tricia Rose, Toni Morrison, and Amiri Baraka.