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Duke University Libraries are committed to providing top-tier collections and research support for African studies and African American studies. The Libraries’ current collection in these areas covers the humanities, social sciences, visual and performing arts, technology, and health. It supports research and study related to race, class, gender, sexuality, politics, law, popular culture, and other issues in African and African American communities, in addition to other parts of the African diaspora.

Duke University faculty, students, and researchers across disciplines study the African diaspora. Both the historical and modern-day African diaspora are areas of interest, from the communities formed as a result of the transatlantic slave trade to documenting the current migration of Africans in Europe and other parts of the world. Strengthening African diaspora collections will support the Department of African and African American Studies’ focus on “Global Blackness” as it develops a Ph.D. program. This departmental focus and new program will require new library materials. The development of strong African diaspora collections also supports numerous other Duke programs, including: 

  • the International Comparative Studies program, which emphasizes critical transnationalism;
  • the History Department, which features colonial empire and colonialism, globalism and transnationalism, and race and ethnicity among its teaching and research themes; and
  • the Sanford School of Public Policy, which hosts multidisciplinary academic and research programs in international relations and development.

Establish a Restricted Collection Endowment ($300,000+)

A restricted collection endowment will enable the continuous development of a distinctive African diaspora collection across a broad range of subject areas and formats. Multiple collections in the John Hope Franklin Research Center focus on the African diaspora or pan-Africanism. Resources purchased through a restricted collection endowment will complement these Franklin Research Center materials as well as other Rubenstein Library collections (e.g., the Human Rights Archive and the Sallie Bingham Center for Women’s History and Culture).This collection would support the teaching and research missions of the university, while bolstering Duke University’s standing as a center for multidisciplinary international studies.