Race and Ethnic Studies

Jennifer Kwon Dobbs, Rolvaag 503
507-786-3264

wp.stolaf.edu/race-and-ethnic-studies

Race and ethnic studies (RACE) is committed to the study of people of color, primarily, though not exclusively, in the United States. The program proceeds from the recognition that race and ethnicity have been and continue to be crucial components within interlocking systems of oppression as well as powerful sites of resistance. In the U.S., majors and concentrators focus on the social, cultural, and historical contributions and lived experiences of African Americans, Native Americans, Asian Americans, Latinos/as, and Middle Eastern Americans. Immigration — historical and contemporary, voluntary and involuntary — is an experience that unites many of these communities. As such, the program encompasses coursework involving the cultures and nations outside of the United States from which such peoples are drawn; it can also include the study of racial and ethnic minorities in other nations. Globalization has brought greater urgency to the recognition that the economic, social, and political forces to which people of color are subjected are not limited to those that originate within the nations in which they reside. Thus students also attend to transnational coalitions, experiences, and phenomena relevant to people of color in the United States and elsewhere. The race and ethnic studies program is interdisciplinary, drawing upon methodologies and materials from a variety of fields in the humanities, social sciences, and fine arts.

Overview of the Major

Unlike many programs and departments, which prescribe a sequence of courses, the race and ethnic studies major provides students with considerable freedom to choose classes that fulfill their interests and often, at the same time, their general education requirements. In addition to RACE 121-122, majors complete a senior project and seven courses, one of which may focus on race and ethnicity outside of the United States, from at least three departments or programs.

Race and ethnic studies also offers a concentration consisting of RACE 121-122 and four other courses from at least two different departments or programs.

Intended Learning Outcomes for the Major

Intended Learning Outcomes for the Concentration

 

Requirements for the Major

RACE 121Introduction to Race and Ethnic Studies1.00
or RACE 122 Introduction to Race and Ethnic Studies
Select a minimum of seven other approved courses taken in at least three departments or programs. 17.00
Total Credits8
1

One of the seven courses may be an independent study or research, and one may be an off-campus internship or course approved by the program director. One may also focus on race and ethnicity outside of the United States.

Race and ethnic studies majors are required to complete a senior project and to give an oral presentation of their findings before the program faculty in early May of their senior year. Study off-campus on diversity topics is encouraged. Students may wish to link a race and ethnic studies major with another one from a department represented in the program.

Requirements for the Concentration

RACE 121Introduction to Race and Ethnic Studies1.00
or RACE 122 Introduction to Race and Ethnic Studies
Select four other approved courses taken in at least two departments or programs.4.00
Total Credits5

Required Course

RACE 121: Introduction to Race and Ethnic Studies

This course provides an introduction to the cultural and historical background of four groups in the United States: African Americans, Native Americans, Latinos, and Asian Americans. Emphasis is on race relations and the distinguishing characteristics of these cultures as reflected in the academic disciplines of the creative and performing arts, the humanities, the social and behavioral sciences, and the general area of popular culture. Contributions to cultural pluralism are accentuated as well as the special issues of identity faced by these Americans. This course emphasizes literary texts. Counts toward American studies Latin American studies majors and Africa and the Americas and Latin American studies concentrations.

RACE 122: Introduction to Race and Ethnic Studies

This course provides an introduction to the cultural and historical background of four groups in the United States: African Americans, Native Americans, Latinos, and Asian Americans. Emphasis is on race relations and the distinguishing characteristics of these cultures as reflected in the academic disciplines of the creative and performing arts, the humanities, the social and behavioral sciences, and the general area of popular culture. Contributions to cultural pluralism are accentuated as well as the special issues of identity faced by these Americans. This course emphasizes historical texts. Counts toward American Studies major and Africa and the Americas concentration.

Elective Course

RACE 250: Topical Seminar

Students apply interdisciplinary theories and methods to selected topics in race and ethnic studies. The course employs a discussion format, focusing on critical reading and analytical essays. Offered in alternate years. May be repeated if topic is different.

RACE 294: Academic Internship

RACE 394: Academic Internship

RACE 298: Independent Study

RACE 396: Directed Undergraduate Research

This course provides a comprehensive research opportunity, including an introduction to relevant background material, technical instruction, identification of a meaningful project, and data collection. The topic is determined by the faculty member in charge of the course and may relate to his/her research interests. Offered based on department decision. May be offered as a 1.00 credit course or .50 credit course.
Prerequisite: determined by individual instructor.

RACE 398: Independent Research

Approved Courses

AFAM 231 Africa and the Americas: The Diaspora Experience

AMCON 202 Pursuits of Happiness, 1920-Present (completion of American Conversations counts for one course for Race and Ethnic Studies)

ART 275 Topics in Art History (when taught with the topic: African American Art)

ASIAN 123 Asia in America

DANCE 246 Dance in the United States

EDUC 170 Urban Schools and Communities (off-campus)

EDUC 347 Teaching ESL, K-12

EDUC 246 English Language Learners: Issues in Education

EDUC 260 Foundations in Education

EDUC 378 Multicultural Education in Hawaii: Seminar and Practicum (off-campus)

EDUC 379 Urban Education Practicum and Seminar (off-campus)

ENGL 108 The Hero and the Trickster in Post-Colonial Literature

ENGL 200 Topics in Cross-Cultural Literature

ENGL 201 Transatlantic Anglophone Literature

ENGL 203 Asian American Literature

ENGL 205 American Racial and Multicultural Literatures

ENGL 207 Women of the African Diaspora

ENGL 209 Arab American Literature and Film

ENGL 210 Post-Colonial Literatures

ENGL 251 Major Chicano/a Authors

ENGL 280 Topics in Genre (when taught with the topic: Muslim Women Writers)

ENGL 345 Topics in American Racial and Multicultural Literatures

ENGL 347 Topics in Post-Colonial Literatures

HIST 151 Slavery in African History

HIST 165 Slavery in the Americas

HIST 181 Civil Rights Revolution

HIST 199 American History Since 1865

HIST 270 Major Seminar: American History

HIST 277 African-American History

HIST 278 Experiencing Southern History (off-campus)

HIST 282 Topics in Native American History

HIST 288 America in the Civil War and Reconstruction Era

HIST 290 Reel America: U.S. History in Film

HIST 320 Seminar: Modern Europe (when taught with the topic: Holocaust and History)

HIST 370 American Seminar (when taught with the topic: Capitalism and Slavery)

MUSIC 237 World Music

PHIL 255 Race and Social Justice

PSCI 244 Race and American Politics

REL 267 African-American Religious Thought in the 20th Century

SWRK 221 Social Work and Social Welfare

SWRK 373 Just Practice

SOAN 128 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology

SOAN 234 Native North American Cultures and Religions

SOAN 242 Contemporary Native American Issues

SOAN 261 Gender in Cross-Cultural Perspective

SOAN 264 Race and Class in American Culture

SOAN 266 Crime and Inequality

SOAN 296 Topics in Sociology/Anthropology (when taught with the topic: Urban Sociology)

SPAN 273 Cultural Heritage of the Hispanic U.S.

SPAN 276 Spanish as a First and Second Language

SPAN 311 Language in Society

In addition, some sections of REL 121 Bible in Culture and Community and WRIT 111 First-Year Writing may count toward the race and ethnic studies major or concentration, depending on topic. Petition the director of race and ethnic studies for approval.

Director, 2016-2017

Jennifer Kwon Dobbs

Associate Professor of English

poetry and poetics; creative nonfiction; Asian American literature; critical adoption studies

Joshua R. Anderson

Visiting Assistant Professor of Political Science and Environmental Studies

American politics; political philosophy; history of science

Maggie A. Broner

Associate Professor of Romance Languages - Spanish

Hispanic linguistics; culture; second language acquisition

Heather Campbell

Associate Professor of Education

ESL; reading; special education; Director of Assessment

Mary S. Carlsen (on leave Interim and spring)

Professor of Social Work and Family Studies

social policy; global social work; professional ethics; end of life care; family studies

Michael W. Fitzgerald

Professor of History

African-American history; Civil War and Reconstruction; Southern America

Carlos Gallego

Associate Professor of English

Chicano/a studies; 20th century American literature; comparative ethinic studies; philosophy and critical theory; cultural studies

David Hagedorn

Artist in Residence in Music

jazz bands; percussion; percussion methods; world music

Steven C. Hahn

Professor of History

colonial America; Native American history; piracy

Joan Hepburn

Associate Professor of English

African American literature; drama; race and ethnic literature; western African drama in English

Abdulai Iddrisu

Associate Professor of History

African history; Islam in Africa

Heather J. Klopchin

Associate Professor of Dance

modern dance technique; ballet technique; dance history; Companydance

Judy Kutulas

Professor of History

20th-century U.S. history; U.S. women's history; popular and material culture

Elizabeth A. Leer

Associate Professor of Education

English education; reading; curriculum and instruction

Kristina Medina-Vilariño

Assistant Professor of Romance Languages-Spanish

Caribbean Studies; 20th- and 21st-century Latin American studies; contemporary Latino studies; race and ethnic studies

Linda Y. Mokdad

Assistant Professor of English

film history; classical film theory; feminist film theory; art cinema; Arab cinemas

Lisa L. Moore

Assistant Professor of Social Work and Family Studies

race and culture in families; emerging adulthood theory; social work practice

Jonathan T. Naito (on leave)

Associate Professor of English

20th- and 21st-century British and Irish literature; postcolonial studies; black and Asian British literature; Samuel Beckett

Leon Narvaez

Professor of Romance Languages - Spanish

Hispanic culture, language, and literature; migration and other interdisciplinary studies

Rosemary A. Pfarr-Baker

Instructor in Education

counseling; educational opportunity; Director of Field Experience and Licensure

Matthew Rohn

Associate Professor of Art and Art History and Environmental Studies

19th-and 20th-century art; American culture; gender and multi-cultureal studies; social justice; visual ecocriticism

David C. Schalliol

Assistant Professor of Sociology/Anthropology

social stratification; urban sociology; visual sociology; criminology; education

Susan E. Smalling

Associate Professor of Social Work and Family Studies

anti-oppressive research and practice; indigenous populations; family and child welfare

Ka F. Wong

Associate Professor of Asian Studies

language pedagogy; cultural studies; Asian American studies; visual culture