Program in African Studies

Executive Committee

Wendy Belcher

Wendy L. Belcher

Professor, Department of Comparative Literature and Department for African American Studies

105 East Pyne


Wendy Laura Belcher is professor of African literature with a joint appointments in the departments of comparative literature and African American studies. Working at the intersection of diaspora, postcolonial, medieval and early modern studies, she has a special interest in the literatures of Ethiopia and Ghana and is working to bring attention to early African literature (written between 1300 and 1900), particularly in African languages, through her research and translation.

Jacob S. Dlamini

Assistant Professor of History

102 Dickinson Hall


Jacob Dlamini is a historian of Africa, with an interest in precolonial, colonial and postcolonial African History. He obtained a Ph.D. from Yale University and is also a graduate of Wits University in South Africa and Sussex University in England. Dlamini held a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Barcelona and was a visiting scholar at Harvard University.

Simon Gikandi

Simon Gikandi

Robert Schirmer Professor of English

45 McCosh Hall


Simon Gikandi is the Robert Schirmer Professor and Chair of English. He is also affiliated with the departments of comparative literature and African American studies, and the Program in African Studies. Before to Princeton, he was the Robert Hayden Collegiate Professor of English at the University of Michigan and the director of the program in comparative literature. Gikandi was elected second vice president of the Modern Language Association (MLA) in December 2016. He was the first vice-president of the MLA in 2018 and became the association's president in 2019. He served as editor of PMLA, the official journal of the MLA, from 2011 to 2016.

Satyel Larson

Satyel Larson

Assistant Professor of Near Eastern Studies

115 Jones Hall


Satyel Larson is assistant professor in the Department of Near Eastern Studies. Her research and teaching lie at the intersections of law, science, technology and society; women, gender and sexuality; reproduction, health and medicine; Islam and secularism; colonialism, postcolonialism and globality; historical anthropology and epistemology; political economy; and language, discourse and narrative. Her work has been focused in Morocco, North and West Africa, the Middle East and the diaspora in Europe.

Sanyu Mojola

Sanyu Mojola

Professor of Sociology and Public Affiars

Maurice P During Professor of Demographic Studies


Office of Population Research

Sanyu Mojola is the director of the Office of Population Research and professor of sociology and public affairs.  She earned her B.A. degree from Durham University and a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago, where her dissertation won the Richard Saller Dissertation Prize. She was previously on the faculty of sociology at the University of Michigan and the University of Colorado-Boulder, where she was a Gamm Teaching Fellow and was chosen as Faculty Mentor of the Year by sociology graduate students. She has also been a Hutchins Fellow at the Du Bois Research Institute in the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research at Harvard University.