Ethnic studies are the critical interdisciplinary study of race and ethnicity focusing on historically aggrieved racialized groups in the United States including Chicana/o Americans, Latina/o Americans, African Americans, Asian Americans and Native Americans. Utilizing social-scientific and humanistic perspectives, we examine how racism has been and continues to be a powerful social, cultural and political force and we explore how it intersects with other aspects of identity including, gender, sexuality, legal status, class, religion, nationality, and immigration status. Our ethnic studies program is dedicated to social justice and combating racism while producing students with strong critical thinking skills that are applicable to a wide range of careers.
Through ethnography, story and artifact, this course explores the anthropology of Native Americans from prehistory to the present. Utilizing an anthropological and Native American Studies perspective, we examine sociocultural issues relevant to Native Americans such as economics, language, religion, identity, politics, and cultural change. Special attention will be given to the contributions of Native Americans to the field of anthropology and to the broader culture of the United States. Emphasis will also be placed on the impact of European colonialism and on contemporary issues such as discrimination, the struggle for sovereignty, and land rights.
This course introduces students to the interdisciplinary study of race and ethnicity in the United States and the world beyond. It examines social justice movements in relation to ethnic and racial groups in the United States to provide a basis for a better understanding of the socioeconomic, cultural and political conditions among Native American, African American, Asian American, and Latina and Latino American communities. Using an intersectional lens, we will explore colonialism, racism and social movements in the U.S. context.
This course explores the richness and diversity of African American culture and experience in the Americas from the 1600’s to the present. Utilizing an anthropological perspective, the course will critically explore concepts like race, identity, diaspora, discrimination, marginalization and hybridity while paying particular attention to the significant impact that African Americans have had on American culture as a whole. Topics for discussion will include the influences of Yoruba culture, slavery, the Harlem Renaissance, Pan-Africanism, civil rights, the Black Power movement, the Black Panthers, blues, jazz, poetry, sports, literature, and the culture of Hip Hop.
Borders and borderlands define territories and identity while simultaneously calling them into question. Utilizing an interdisciplinary perspective that includes ethnic studies, Chicana/o studies, anthropology, border studies, history, political science and other disciplines, this course explores both physical and conceptual borders and borderlands with an emphasis on first person narratives, generalizing to universal themes of change, globalization, conflict, motivation and movement across borders. Using the US/Mexico borderlands as our foundation, this course explores borders and borderlands through a range of ethnographic, narrative and theoretical works. We will analyze specific borderlands and borderland identities while considering the themes of hybridity, gender, sexuality, marginalization, economics, immigration, labor flows, travel, pollution, environmental change, media, conflict and cooperation.
This course offers a survey of major authors, works, and genres in African-American literature from the colonial era to the present. The course will include significant historical and cultural analysis as reflected in the literature. The course will also examine how the African-American literature has impacted American culture.