Office: Humanities Center 312
Oghenetoja Okoh received her B.A. at the University of Minnesota and earned her Ph.D. from New York University. She taught at the University of Akron before coming to Loyola. Her current book manuscript - Minority Identities in Nigeria: Contesting and Claiming Citizenship in the Twentieth Century – is under contract with Cambridge University Press and reflects her current research agenda. She teaches 20th century African and African diaspora history, with expertise on questions of ethnicity, gender, and citizenship.
- Encountering the Past
- Colonialism in Africa
- Africa in the Western Imagination
- Gender and Power in Modern Africa
- The Historian's Craft
- Contesting empire: Nationalism & Decolonization in the Afro-Atlantic World
- Ethnicity & Political Violence in Modern Africa
This past Fall (’20) Dr. Okoh collaborated with the Baltimore Museum of Art to enhance her classes’ exploration of matriarchy and kinship in the course –Gender and Power in Modern Africa. It was perfect timing that the exhibit –A Perfect Power– debuted just as they began this unit in the course.
Here is Dr. Okoh’s reflection on the success of this collaboration: Having access to the wide variety of images and objects in the exhibit really enriched our discussion by engaging how concepts of matriarchy were actually symbolized in many West and West Central African societies. This worked beautifully with the readings I selected on this topic and made the discussions much more vibrant. Most enriching was the opportunity to have Dr. Kevin Tervala, the exhibit’s curator, guest lecture and engage with the students. Attached to our discussion was a visual assignment that asked them to situate selected objects from the exhibit in the historical context we were learning about. At Loyola, we pride ourselves in engaging high impact teaching and learning practices. This was an excellent engagement with this pedagogical mission. Students not only came away feeling enriched, many were excited to engage historical thinking through this visual medium, having it anchor the more abstract concepts of kinship and matriarchy in material culture.IncorporatingA Perfect Powerinto this iteration of the course has expanded my own imagination for how to excite and challenge students in my history courses – courses that, on the surface, can be quite intimidating to prospective students. This was the most engaged iteration of this course, which I’ve taught three times in different settings. This is most surprising given the constraints of the current pandemic. I am most grateful for this experience.