Africa and the Atlantic World
HIST 3840 (WI & GD) and HIST 6500
MWF 9 - 9:50 in Brewster D-312
CRN 86080 and 86083, Section 001
Fall Semester 2017

Dr. Kenneth Wilburn
Office Hours (BA-318): MWF 8:15-9:00 & by Appointment
Office Telephone: 252-328-1029
Academic Home Page:

Course Goals:

Students in HIST 3840 and HIST 6500 will learn through assigned readings, discussion, and research the subject matter of Africa and the Atlantic World in maritime and continental contexts with particular emphasis on homocentricity and the nature of the Global African. Students will be introduced to research methodology, principles, and concepts related to the discipline of history and historical research. Finally, students will learn about the Global African contribution to general knowledge and how the Mother Continent teaches us about humanity in the Atlantic World.

Writing Intensive Statement:

Writing intensive courses in the Writing Across the Curriculum Program at East Carolina University will focus on the development of writing skills. Upon completion of the course students will:

HIST 3840 contributes to the twelve-hour WI requirement for students at ECU. As such, you must upload samples of your writing from HIST 3840 to the University Writing Portfolio (UWPort). For details, access

Remember, the University Writing Center offers both online and face-to-face tutoring to help you draft and edit your papers. For more information, access

Course Requirements:

Ten-Page (Undergraduate)/Fifteen-Page (Graduate) Research Paper Using Primary Sources: 30%

Three Book Reviews: 20%

Seminar Discussion Topics: 30%

29 November - 4 December: Research Paper Presentations (6-8 minutes per paper) and Seminar Discussions (2-4 minutes per paper)

Final Exam: 20%

Your final exam will have two sections, each worth 50%. Section one will have two essay questions. You will select one question to answer. Section two will be "mix and match." Some of the "mix and match" questions will come from three groups of documents not discussed in class (documents 32, 33, 34, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 48, and 55) located here: Documents Group 1, Documents Group 2, and Documents Group 3. The final will be from 8:00 - 10:30 a.m., Wednesday, December 13. Bring one essay exam blue book to the exam. If you earned an "A" in discussions, book reviews, and your research paper and you have two or less unexcused absences, you are exempt from the final exam.


Alpers, Edward A., Nancy L. Clark, and William H. Worger. Africa and the West: A Documentary History, Volumes 1 and 2
Gomez, Michael A. Reversing Sail: A History of the African Diaspora
Herbstein, Manu. Ama: A Story of the Atlantic Slave Trade
Lindsay, Lisa A. Captives as Commodities: The Transatlantic Slave Trade
Thornton, John. Africa and Africans in the Making of the Atlantic World, 1400-1800

Class Decorum:

Laptops and other communications devices must be turned off before each class. Please enjoy Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, email and your telephone before you enter and after you exit our classroom. Your classmates and I thank you in advance for your good manners and respectful commitment to intellectual engagement in Africa and the Atlantic World.

Attendance Policy: Seven absences effect failure.

Severe Weather and Emergency Alert:

ECU seeks to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Students requesting accommodations
must first go to the Department of Disability Support Services, Slay 138; call 252-737-1016.

Return to the Academic Home Page
First Online Edition: 2 January 2013
Last Revised: 5 December 2017