UCSB Center for Black Studies Mission Statement
Mission and Direction
The Center for Black Studies at the University of
California, Santa Barbara, the only research center in the UC system devoted primarily to
the study of people of African descent, appears uniquely qualified to enter current
intellectual debates about the position and the experience of Blacks in Africa and in the
Americas. The Center's research agenda should aim at unearthing the truths of life
as experienced by millions of African, African-Americans and Caribbean Islanders, a
reality which remains buried under the misconceptions of public opinion and slanted
(1) First, through its research and its public fora for colloquia, the Center must be a place to generate ideas on the culture, history, politics, economic factors, and educational matters that have affected the course of life for various Black populations over time. In addition, it must address pressing contemporary issues for Africans, African-Americans, and other diasporatic communities and people of color. It is also important to study the rapport between people of African descent, people of color, and other groups.
(2) Furthermore, the Center must possess more efficient tools to disseminate its research and the vigorous debates in which it engages. It is precisely with the aim of filling this startling void that a new publishing venture has been proposed by UCSB' s Center for Black Studies (see Publications section).
Over the past two years, the Center's Advisory Board
members have drafted a new mission statement which emphasizes their strong support for
retaining the Center's public/cultural mission while also re-directing the Center's agenda
towards a more systematic effort to engage in research and publications.
Though the Center's old mission statements also indicated a commitment to research and
public service, documents supporting work done in these areas are lacking. We are
now in the process of more systematically documenting past work done at the