Spring 2017

Women Writers of Africa and the African Diaspora

Listed in: Black Studies, as BLST-203  |  English, as ENGL-216  |  Sexuality, Women's and Gender Studies, as SWAG-203

Formerly listed as: BLST-27


Carol Y. Bailey (Section 01)


(Offered as ENGL 216, BLST 203 [D], and SWAG 203.)  The term “Women Writers” suggests, and perhaps assumes, a particular category.  How useful is this term in describing the writers we tend to include under the frame?  And further, how useful are the designations "African" and "African Diaspora"?  We will begin by critically examining these central questions, and revisit them frequently as we read specific texts and the body of works included in this course.  Our readings comprise a range of literary and scholarly works by canonical and more recent female writers from Africa, the Caribbean, and continental America.  Framed primarily by Postcolonial Criticism, our explorations will center on how writers treat historical and contemporary issues specifically connected to women’s experiences, as well as other issues, such as globalization, modernity, and sexuality.  We will consider the continuities and points of departure between writers, periods, and regions, and explore the significance of the writers’ stylistic choices.  Here our emphasis will be on how writers appropriate vernacular and conventional modes of writing.

Limited to 18 students.  Spring semester.  Visiting Lecturer Bailey.

If Overenrolled: Preference given to undeclared sophomores and all English majors.


Attention to Issues of Class, Attention to Issues of Gender and Sexuality, Attention to Issues of Race, Attention to Writing


2022-23: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2008, Spring 2011, Fall 2012, Spring 2014, Spring 2015, Spring 2017, Spring 2019, Spring 2020, Spring 2022