The Afro-American Studies Department spent another year trying to shed its reputation as a trouble spot.
The department's new executive committee, formed by Dean Rosovsky in September following the resignation of the chairman, set out to increase the number of senior faculty in the department but fell far short of its mission.
In March, on the committee's recommendation, Rosovsky offered tenure in Afro-Am to three historians in the field. But Nathan I. Huggins, professor of history at Columbia University, was the only one of the trio to accept the offer. Huggins will assume the chairmanship of the department and direct the DuBois Institute, a center for studying issues concerning Afro-Americans, beginning July 1.
Huggins' addition--despite the fact that administrators targeted him as the key appointment--won't really expand the department's senior ranks, however, because Ewart Guinier, the only professor tenured solely in Afro-Am retired in January.
Since Huggins' acceptance, the committee, at his request, has stopped looking for historians and has begun to search for a scholar in Afro-American literature.
In part for that reason, it decided in April not to recommend Eugene D. Genovese, one of the top historians in the field, for the next appointment. Committee members said another reason they rejected Genovese was his reputation as a "prickly" colleague.
With the departure of three junior faculty members--two will take leaves of absence and one resigned this fall--the committee is looking hard for a visiting professor. Committee members doubt they can find any more permanent senior Faculty by the fall. See Section 3