ENG 257 : African-American Literature

Covers the major genres and authors of African-American literature from the period of slavery through the Harlem Renaissance.

Major topics include abolition, labor and conditions under slave bondage, reconstructing the black identity in the post-Emancipation Era and the Harlem Renaissance, protest against racist violence, racial passing and socioeconomic mobility, creation of a Black aesthetic.


Equivalent placement test scores also accepted.

Course Outcomes

Upon completion of the course students should be able to:

  • Recognize the importance of self-documentation as a means to claim the African-American identity.
  • Examine the intersection of economics, history, culture, region, politics, religion, gender, and sexuality to African-American literature.
  • Understand the legacy of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade to the African-American experience.
  • Identify the relationship between African-American literary forms and Black vernacular (gospel, blues, jazz, sermons, stories, and the oral tradition).

Additional Information

This course fulfills the following GE requirements: Cultural Literacy, Arts and Letters/ASOT-B, Arts and Letters/AAS, Arts and Letters/AGS, Arts and Letters/AS, Arts and Letters/AAOT.

Course Adoption Date

Course Revision Date





Grading Options

Letter Grades


Audit Available