Beverly Mack is a Professor of African Studies in the Department of African and African American Studies and a Courtesy Professor of Religious Studies. She regularly teaches the following courses: Women and Islam, Muslim Women's Autobiography, African Women Writers, and Islamic (Sufi) Literature. Prior to joining KU, Professor Mack taught at Yale University (Hausa language and African literature), Georgetown University (African history), and George Mason University (African literature).
Beverly Mack's 2011 lecture on the 'Yan Taru at the International Museum of Muslim Culture's NEH Conference, "Islamic West Africa's Legacy of Literacy and Music to America and the World." Scroll to panel on "Islam and the Promotion of Literacy"
Professor Mack holds Ph.D. and Master's degrees from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her Ph.D. and M.A. are in African literature, with doctoral minors in African history and Comparative Literature. She has conducted extended field research in Kano, Nigeria, and Fes, Morocco, shorter research periods in Ghana, Ivory Coast, and Guinea-Conakry, and was a Peace Corps volunteer in Sierra Leone. She has published extensively on African literature and Muslim women's lives in West Africa. Her books include: Hausa Women in the Twentieth Century (University of Wisconsin Press, 1990),The Collected Works of Nana Asma'u, daughter of Shehu Usman dan Fodiyo, 1793-1864 (Michigan State University Press, 1997), One Woman's Jihad: Nana Asma'u, Scholar and Scribe (Indiana University Press, 2001), Muslim Women Sing: Hausa Popular Song (Indiana University Press, 2004) and Educating Muslim Women: The West African Legacy of Nana Asma'u (London: Interface Press, 2013). She is currently working on a book about Muslim women scholars in Nigeria and Morocco. Her research has been funded by a variety of external grants and fellowships from: Fulbright-Hays, National Endowment for the Humanities, Woodrow Wilson, Carnegie Corporation, and the NDEA Title VI language study grant program. In 2000 Professor Mack was selected as one of twelve national Carnegie Corporation scholars for Innovative Scholarship in Education, International Development, Democracy, and International Peace and Security.
Professor Mack's service extends to regional and national venues. She has been the Department's African Languages Coordinator, Outreach Coordinator, and Honors Coordinator. She has procured and orchestrated a U.S. Dept of Education Title VI International Studies grant for the development of less commonly taught languages on the KU campus, and has acted as Interim Associate Dean of International Programs. Regionally she lectures for the Kansas Humanities Council Book Discussion Groups, and for local book groups. She is a Kansas Humanities Council Board member. In addition, she speaks often for regional groups interested in learning more about issues related to Islam, and has lectured in Pennsylvania and Ohio for Islamic communities there.
Professor Mack's awards include: the national African Studies Association's Text and Translation Book Award, the University of Kansas's Mortar Board Outstanding Educator Award, the KU Vice Chancellor Book Subvention Award, and the KU Graduate School Book Subvention Award.