About the course

About the class

This course is taught by Hank Williams. It will support the work and provide a theoretical component to Lehman Africana Studies majors doing work with organizations serving the Black community. The goal of this course is to think critically about what it means to serve the community and practically deal with issues that one needs to be aware of or that may arise. We will investigate issues of community control and what it means for Black communities to develop power. Interested community members are also welcome to “virtually” take the course and follow along here with us.

The course is taught from an Afrocentric point of view and will use Amos Wilson’s Blueprint for Black Power as a theoretical framework to critically analyze what the power structures are in society, how they operate, and how Black communities and organizations can strategically use them to build cultural, political, and economic power in the context of contemporary US society.

Spring 2022 Course

Spring 2022 will be run synchronously online on Wednesdays from 6-8:40 PM for seminar meetings via Lehman College in the Africana Studies department. Required fieldwork placements will be done with organizations outside of class time.


We will be meeting via Zoom and this website for Spring 2022.

For students in the class

Please read the page for potential students in the class first.

Keep an eye on are the Course Updates page, where I’ll update weekly reading/ listening/ viewing. You can find PDF files for readings not in assigned books on the Readings page, where PDF files will patiently wait for you to download and read them. Required books are also on reserve in Lehman’s library.

Note that one of the required parts of the course is weekly work (approx. 4 hours) with a community activist or non-profit organization that specifically serves the Black community (including Spanish-speaking Black communities). Your paid job will (in almost all cases) not count. Plan for this as there is no way out of this particular course requirement and no way to successfully complete the course without it. This is a non-negotiable part of the course that cannot be waived! You should register for the course in a semester that you have enough time for this if this is an issue.

For community members and guests

Feel free to follow along with is either virtually (online) or stop by and visit a class session. The book is available online, in bookstores, and in some libraries. E-mail me for a password for the online readings if you need one and kindly include a short introductory note. You might consider signing up for e-mail updates of new posts. (See the form at the bottom of the page.)