In our society, there is a big debate on whether African American studies should be considered sociological and historical, or if it should be considered a major subject to research. Many colleges make their students take general education classes, and I feel as if every college student should be required to learn about African American history and culture. It is a very important subject, and I hope this first blog can bring you some insight on how big of a study African American studies really is.
“Over thirty million citizens of the United States of America are descendants of the continent of Africa”, as stated by Talmadge Anderson. This is an outstanding number of descendants from Africa, and is also a number higher than what I would have imagined. Throughout their history and the hardships, it is amazing to see so many African Americans striving to make the United States of America a better and more diverse place, and also striving to make themselves become the best they can be. With the United States being so diverse, why are we not all required to broaden our learning to other cultures and traditions other than our own?
Besides the American tradition, the second most learned culture and history should be about the African Americans, their history has so much important content that a lot of people will never be able to learn about. Fortunately, I and a lot of other college students are able to learn about how the African Americans struggled but were still able to fight through all of their hardships and how they were able to see the best in everything. With all of this being said, I think that African American studies should be its own major of study within all colleges. Because, although racism within the United States has become a somewhat better situation, it does still exist and I think this is why people need to learn about them a little bit more. If colleges made African American studies a major field of study, it could really help a lot of peoples views.
The top picture is a picture of Booker T. Washington in front of a crowd of people. Washington was one of many of influential African Americans within the 1850’s-1900’s. Washington was known as the leader for the Negro people, and during the time, many white people agreed with his views and actions. Besides his public speaking and influences, later in Washington’s life he became the builder of the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama. He therefore was able to help many African Americans receive a good education, when many of them never even thought about attending school because they were not allowed to. Although some African Americans may not have completely agreed with many of his views, he was still able to improve their lives by giving them an education.
The second picture above is a picture of W.E.B Dubois. Dubois was an intelligent African American who received his schooling from Harvard University. He was a big time author who wrote a lot of books on the culture and history of African Americans, but he was also a social activist who helped influence peoples views. Dubois was one of the founders of the NAACP, which is dedicated to not only blacks but also whites. During his life, he was also able to perform studies on African American studies, although it was not successful in his lifetime, he was able to introduce this idea in which is now becoming very important in our schooling curriculum. All in all Dubois main objective was to improve African American life within the United States socially and politically.
The point in describing these two important and influential people is to show you how two people helped change the world. These are only two out of many African Americans who took a stand against the way Blacks were being treated, and who wanted to see the world become a better place for everyone. This is why African American studies needs to become a major field of study and required in general education, there is simply too much information to be learned about, and I think this could help a lot of peoples views about African Americans. This is a different type of study compared to a lot of other studies because of all the history that occurred in the nation that we live in today. If only people knew how horrible things were for the African Americans, I think racism could become nonexistent.
I hope this shows some clarity on why I think African American studies is such a big deal. There are a lot of opinionated and uneducated people in the world who do not know a thing about how African Americans were treated back in the day. I never knew that African American women were raped and that the slavemasters would sell their children as property. Some of the things I read were unimaginable, and I cannot believe that people could treat others in the way that they did. This is a huge part in everyones history, and needs to be taught in colleges and needs to be made a priority in every college students curriculum.