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The Center for the Study of Race, Politics, and Culture


Gina E. Miranda Samuels, Faculty Director

​Tracye A. Matthews, Executive Director


Faculty affiliates of the CSRPC can be found at

Funding and Opportunities

The CSRPC has many resources for masters and doctoral students who work on topics around race and ethnicity. The Center offers dissertation and residential fellowships, research and travel funding, and workshops and writing support. 

For additional information about the Center for the Study of Race, Politics, and Culture, please see

Comparative Race and Ethnic Studies Courses

CRES 30001. Topics in African American History. 100 Units.

This course is designed to explore in-depth selected topics in African American history and historiography. The specific focus this term will be "race and twentieth-century social science." Readings and discussion will explore the history of the relation between social-science theory and racial thought and practice from the race science of the late-nineteenth century through Franz Boas's cultural relativism to mid-twentieth century notions of a so-called culture of poverty. Our attention will focus on the real-world, especially public policy, implications of social-scientific thought. In addition to active participation in class discussions each student will write a final paper on a selected topic.

Equivalent Course(s): HIST 40001

CRES 30203. Colloquium: Colonial African History. 100 Units.

In the late nineteenth century, European nations embarked on an ambitious effort to conquer and occupy Africa. This course considers the conditions that enabled the European "scramble for Africa" and the long-lasting consequences of that project. We will use primary sources, secondary texts, fiction, and films to explore the meanings and manifestations of the European occupation for African peoples. Specific themes to be investigated include colonial institutions and systems of rule; social and political effects of colonialism; colonial religious movements; resistance and rebellion; nationalism and independence. We will draw case studies from French West Africa, Kenya, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, and South Africa.

Instructor(s): E. Osborn     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): Upper-level undergraduates with consent of instructor.
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 40203

CRES 30308. Political Theologies of Slavery and Freedom in the Atlantic World. 100 Units.

This seminar examines the interdisciplinary form of knowledge known as "political theology" in the context of Atlantic slavery. The course will trace two major developments. First, we will explore how Christian metaphysics facilitated colonialism and slavery, focusing on the emergence of race as a theological (rather than a biological) concept and on the self-fulfilling providentialism that structured fantasies of Euro-Christian world dominance. Second, we will explore how indigenous and African cosmologies and Christianities informed enslaved resistance and abolitionism. Our readings will range from works of political theology (Augustine, Calvin, Hobbes) to early American writings (Las Casas, Ligon, Jefferson) to Black Atlantic anti-slavery texts (Wheatley, Walker, Turner). We'll consider the explorer George Best's rewriting of the biblical Curse of Ham, Francis Bacon's claim that Europe's superior technology evidenced its Chosen status, and the ideology of "hereditary heathenism" that forestalled early efforts to convert slaves to Christianity. Likewise, we'll consider the role of obeah in the Haitian Revolution, the competing attitudes toward Christian slave revolt found in fiction by Douglass and Stowe, and the continued contestation of what W. E. B. Du Bois called "the new religion of whiteness." Secondary authors may include Charles Taylor, Talal Asad, Max Weber, Colin Kidd, Rebecca Goetz, Jared Hickman, Katharine Gerbner, Jorge Cañizares-Esguerra, and J. Kameron Carter

Instructor(s): Alex Mazzaferro     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): CHSS 40308, KNOW 40308, SCTH 40308

CRES 31900. ¿Cuerpos Desechables? Estéticas de la No-Vida en las Literaturas Hispanoamericanas. 100 Units.

In this seminar we will conduct a theoretical exploration of the aesthetic procedures through which human life has been represented as expendable in Spanish-American literature from the Conquest to the twenty-first century, as well as an examination of the historical and philosophical contexts within which such figurations emerged. The course will focus on case studies that correspond to four key moments in the history of the region: conquest and colonization, slavery and the formation of national states in the nineteenth century, the triumph of a capitalist export economy at the turn of the twentieth, and the violent challenges posed by globalization and narcotráfico in the contemporary context. Among the issues and texts we may engage are Fray Bartolomé de las Casas and Francisco de Vitoria's sixteenth-century dispute on the right of conquest and the Brevísima relación de la destrucción de las Indias, Esteban Echevarría's El matadero, Lucio Mansilla's Una excursión a los indios ranqueles, Juan F. Manzano's Autobiografía de un esclavo, Manuel Zeno Gandía's La charca, and Fernando Vallejo's La virgen de los sicarios.

Instructor(s): A. Lugo-Ortiz     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): LACS 31900, SPAN 31900, HMRT 31901

CRES 32012. Technologies of Race Making. 100 Units.

This course considers the intersections between technology, science, and race. It explores how technologies have been developed and used to assign racial meaning to people's identities and bodies and how this has impacted economic, political, and social power structures. We will read studies relating to historical and present-day technologies and discuss topics such as racial science, phrenology, biometry, surveillance and policing, artificial intelligence and automation, and data production and reuse. A major theme that runs through the course is the practice of race-making, how biological race is enacted and made relevant in specific technological practices. Which assumptions and expectations about human variation are built into the technologies? What are the effects of its use in practice? How does race making configure into more durable forms, such as standards, databanks, and protocols? This class will be bi-modal, with in class and online options.

Instructor(s): Iris Clever     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): KNOW 22012, ANTH 33336, CHSS 32012, SOCI 30325, HIPS 22102, KNOW 32012

CRES 33700. Capitalism, Colonialism, and Nationalism in the Pacific. 100 Units.

This course compares colonial capitalist projects and their dialogic transfor­mations up to present political dilemmas, with special attention to Fiji, New Zealand, and Hawai'i, and a focus on the labor diaspora, the fates of indigenous polities, and tensions in contemporary citizenship. We will compare Wakefield's "scientific colonization" in New Zealand, Gordon's social experiments and indentured labor in Fiji, and the plantations, American annexation, tourism, and the military in Hawai'i. We will compare the colonial experiences of the Maori, Hawaiians, and indigenous Fijians, and also those of the immigrant laborers and their descendants, especially white New Zealanders, the South Asians in Fiji, and the Japanese in Hawai'i. General pro­positions about nationalism, capitalism "late" and otherwise, global cultural flows, and postcolonial subject positions will be juxtaposed with contemporary Pacific conflicts.

Instructor(s): John Kelly
Equivalent Course(s): ANTH 23700, CRES 23710, ANTH 33700

CRES 34706. Edo/Tokyo: Society and the City in Japan. 100 Units.

This course explores the history of one of the world's largest cities from its origins as the castle town of the Tokugawa shoguns in the early seventeenth century, to its transformation into a national capital and imperial center, and concludes in the postwar era as Tokyo emerged from the ashes of World War II to become a center of global capital and culture. Our focus will be on the complex and evolving interactions between the natural and built environments of the city and politics, culture, and social relations.

Instructor(s): S. Burns     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): EALC 24706, HIST 24706, ARCH 24706, ENST 24706, CRES 24706, HIST 34706, EALC 34706

CRES 35113. From Mestizaje to the Mexican Genome. 100 Units.

As the Kingdom of New Spain became independent Mexico, how did a society structured around status, caste and corporate bodies imagine itself as a republic of equal citizens? This course will explore the categories of class, culture and, particularly, race, with which, for over two hundred years, Mexican politicians and public writers, scientists and intellectuals have sought to make sense of the nation, decipher its ethnic, linguistic and cultural diversity, assuage the profound inequalities that have riddled it, and forge a "national identity".

Equivalent Course(s): HIST 26124, CRES 25113, LACS 35113, HIST 36124, LACS 25113

CRES 36226. American Political Economy and Race. 100 Units.

This course will explore how individual or group identity and social location is understood in economics. Specifically, we will use a political economy framework, which emerges from the premise that economic life has material, cultural, and political dimensions and that an individual's (or group's) identity or social location--e.g., race, gender, and class--may constrain or empower agents in their participation in economic and political life. The readings will draw from diverse disciplines including political science, economics, and sociology and will focus primarily on the intersection of race and class.

Equivalent Course(s): PLSC 36206

CRES 37401. Literaturas del Caribe Hispanico en el siglo XX. 100 Units.

En este curso se estudiarán algunos ejemplos salientes de las literaturas producidas en el Caribe hispánico insular (Cuba, Puerto Rico y Santo Domingo) durante el siglo XX y a principios del XXI. Entre los asuntos a discutir tendrán un lugar principal los modos en que esta producción se ha constituído como respuesta y elaboración estética de las historias de esclavitud, violencia racial y colonialismo, de militarización y desplazamientos territoriales migratorios, que han marcado a la región en su carácter de frontera imperial desde el siglo XVI. En el curso también se abordará la condición simbólica del Caribe como espacio de utopías y catástrofes, escenario previlegiado tanto de las aspiraciones revolucionarias propias de la modernidad (e.g. la Revolución Haitiana del 1791 y la Revolución Cubana del 1959) como de los terrores de la destrucción ecológica (con su experiencia cruel de huracanes y terremotos).

Instructor(s): A. Lugo-Ortiz     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): At least one of the following courses: SPAN 21500, 21703, 21803, 21903, or 22003.
Note(s): Taught in Spanish.
Equivalent Course(s): CRES 27401, LACS 37401, LACS 27401, SPAN 37401, SPAN 27401

CRES 37403. African American Lives and Times. 100 Units.

This colloquium will examine selected topics and issues in African American history during a dynamic and critical decade, 1893 and 1903, that witnessed the redefinition of American national and sectional identities, social and labor relations, and race and gender relations. A principal premise of the course is that African American life and work was at the nexus of the birth of modern America, as reflected in labor and consumption, in transnational relations (especially Africa), in cultural expression (especially music and literature), and in the resistance or contestation to many of these developments. The course will focus on the Chicago World's Fair and the publication of Du Bois's Souls of Black Folk as seminal moments in the era. Our discussions will be framed by diverse primary materials, including visual and aural sources, juxtaposed with interpretations of the era by various historians. A principal goal of the course is that students gain a greater appreciation for interpreting historical processes through in-depth examination of the complex and multiple currents of an defined era-a slice of time-as well as skills in interpreting diverse primary sources.

Instructor(s): T. Holt     Terms Offered: Winter

CRES 37555. Forms of Labor in Caribbean Literature. 100 Units.

From the barrack-yard fiction of C.L.R. James to the Haitian peasant novel, Caribbean literature has been deeply preoccupied with the lives and struggles of the region's working people: Caribbean literature is, in many ways, a literature of labor. This course facilitates critical engagement with the role of labor in Caribbean literature, exploring how transformations in the conditions of work shape the development of regional literary trends from the early twentieth century through the 1960s. During this period, Caribbean writers identified the project of a national literature with the native working classes even while economic pressures led many to seek work abroad. How do Caribbean writers make sense of these contradictions? What strategies do poets and novelists employ to reconcile processes of transnational migration with narratives of national identity? This course surveys literatures produced across the Caribbean archipelago, comparing the varied forms and genres adopted by Haitian, Bajan, Trinidadian, Jamaican, and Guyanese writers to represent the working classes of their respective islands. Lectures and supplementary critical readings will situate literary texts in relation to histories of economic development in the Caribbean, with particular attention to the plantation, the peasantry, and the expansion of U.S. imperialism. Authors on the syllabus are likely to include Claude McKay, Eric Walrond, Jacques Roumain, C.L.R. James, George Lamming, and Sylvia Wynter.

Instructor(s): Noah Hansen     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): ENGL 27555, CRES 27555

CRES 38906. Nineteenth-Century American Mass Entertainment. 100 Units.

Popular culture filters, reflects, and occasionally refracts many of the central values, prejudices, and preoccupations of a given society. From the Industrial Revolution to the advent of feature films in the early twentieth century, American audiences sought both entertainment and reassurance from performers, daredevils, amusement parks, lecturers, magicians, panoramas, athletes, and photographers. Amidst the Civil War, they paid for portraits that purportedly revealed the ghosts of lost loved ones; in an age of imperialism, they forked over hard-earned cash to relive the glories of western settlement, adventure, and conquest in Buffalo Bill's Wild West. Mass entertainment not only echoed the central events of the age it helped shape them: from phrenology as the channel for antebellum convictions about outward appearance (and racial identity), to the race riots following Jack Johnson's boxing victory over Jim Jeffries. Many of these entertainment forms became economic juggernauts in their own right, and in the process of achieving unprecedented popularity, they also shaped collective memory, gender roles, race relations, and the public's sense of acceptable beliefs and behaviors. This lecture course will examine the history of modern American entertainment over the course of the long nineteenth century. Requirements include careful reading, active and thoughtful participation, and written assignments.

Equivalent Course(s): GNSE 38906, HIST 38906, GNSE 28906, CRES 28906, HIST 28906

CRES 40141. Structural -isms. 100 Units.

What does it mean to designate "structure" as the operative force in discrimination against categories of person-as in appeals to structural racism or structural violence on the basis of gender? And how can we approach this question by attending to aesthetic uses of structure and form, especially as these have been understood in such paradigms as structuralism and recent literary formalisms? How do we read for structure, in reading for racism and for systemic discrimination on other bases? We'll focus on intersections of race, gender, and class (in U.S. contexts) as these categories have been reconfigured in the past half century or so. To explore appeals to structure, we'll consider definitions of literary and aesthetic form, debates about structure vs. agency, and questions of individual and collective action as mediated by institutions. Readings will balance theory with examples drawn from fiction, documentary film, built form, and other media. Throughout, we'll pay particular attention to problems of structure construed as problems of narrative, as we develop sharper terms for understanding how discrimination proceeds structurally.

Instructor(s): Rowan Bayne     Terms Offered: Spring
Note(s): Instructor consent required for undergraduates.
Equivalent Course(s): GNSE 45141, CRES 22141, ENGL 20242, MAPH 40141, GNSE 25141, ENGL 40141

CRES 40161. 21st Century Ethnic American Literature. 100 Units.

This class will read US novels and short stories by African-American, American Indian, Asian-American, and Latinx writers from the last twenty years to conceptualize the shifting categories of race and ethnicity, paired with critical and theoretical works in critical cultural race studies. (20th/21st)

Instructor(s): Megan Tusler     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): MAPH 40161, CRES 22161, ENGL 40161, ENGL 20161, AMER 40161

CRES 40204. A Proto-History of Race? Judaism, Christianity, and Islam in Spain and North Africa (1200-1600) 100 Units.

This course focuses on phenomena of mass conversion and the emergence of ideologies of lineage and purity of blood in the western Mediterranean, more specifically, the Iberian Peninsula and the Maghreb. The rivalry between Islam and Christianity (with Judaism a frequent go-between) in this region produced many distinctive cultural formations. Among those formations were ideas about the limits of conversion that may be compared to modern concepts of race. The word "race" was itself first applied to humans in Iberia during this period, to designate Christians descended from Muslims or Jews, and similar concepts emerged in Islamic North Africa. We will explore these ideas in the Christian Iberian kingdoms, with frequent excursions into Almoravid, Almohad, Marinid and Nasrid Islamic polities. Our goal will be to produce a Mediterranean archaeology of some of the concepts with which Christian and Muslim colonizers encountered the New World and sub-Saharan Africa in the sixteenth century.

Instructor(s): David Nirenberg     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): Spanish reading proficiency recommended, but not required.
Note(s): This course counts as a history graduate colloquium.
Equivalent Course(s): HIJD 40204, SPAN 40204, SCTH 40204, HCHR 40204, HIST 60904, ISLM 40204

CRES 40304. Between Nature and Artifice: The Formation of Scientific Knowledge. 100 Units.

This course critically examines concepts of "nature" and "artifice" in the formation of scientific knowledge, from the Babylonians to the Romantics, and the ways that this history has been written and problematized by both canonical and less canonical works in the history of science from the twentieth century to the present. Our course is guided by three overarching questions, approached with historical texts and historiography, that correspond to three modules of investigation: 1) Nature, 2) Artifice, and 3) Liminal: Neither Natural nor Artificial.

Instructor(s): Margaret Carlyle, Eduardo Escobar, Jennifer P. Daly     Terms Offered: Spring
Note(s): This course fulfills part of the KNOW Core Seminar requirement to be eligible to apply for the SIFK Dissertation Research Fellowship. Ph.D. students must register with the KNOW 40304 course number in order for this course to meet the requirement.
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 34920, CHSS 40304, KNOW 40304, GNSE 40304, HIPS 40304

CRES 40311. The Invention of Hunger. 100 Units.

Hunger is often thought of as an unchanging biological fact, but what it means to be hungry has changed profoundly over the course of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. From the pleasure of sweets to the trauma of famine, hunger has influenced some of the most important economic, political, and cultural developments of the modern age. Drawing from a variety of scholarly disciplines, as well as primary readings including novels, scientific texts, and journalism, we will explore how experiences and understandings of hunger were intertwined with race, class, and gender, and played a pivotal role in the development of the slave trade, colonialism, and humanitarian ethics. We will situate famines, hunger strikes, eating disorders, and other ways of thinking about food in their historical and cultural contexts. We will end the course by examining how this history has influenced how we understand the culture and economics of food in our own society. For each class period, students will write a 1-2 page reflection on one or several of the week's readings that they will circulate to the entire class at least 24 hours before seminar. There will be a 15-20 page final paper on the theme of hunger, broadly defined. This paper will incorporate outside secondary works related to students' specific research interests.

Instructor(s): Yan Slobodkin     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): KNOW 40311

CRES 40315. Black Fugitivity & Fugitive Democracy Radical Democratic Theory and Race. 100 Units.

What does "fugitivity" mean as a concept? As a trope, what kind of rhetorical and political work is it being used to perform by scholars across the humanities and social sciences? How should we assess its appeal, value, limitations, and dangers? This seminar pursues these broad questions by comparing figurations of fugitivity in Black Studies and political theory, specifically in works of Black Study by Hortense Spillers, Fred Moten, and Saidiyah Hartman, and in works of political theory by Sheldon Wolin and Hannah Arendt. In these texts fugitivity gains its meanings by juxtaposing social death and impasse to insurgent movement, creative natality, and aliveness, but theorists represent the meaning, location, protagonists, and characteristic practices of fugitivity differently. Our goal is to discern the stakes in these differences about sociality, maternity, Blackness, and the "grammar" of the democratic and the political. Additional reading includes Neil Roberts' Freedom as Marronage, Christina Sharpe's In the Wake, and recent political theory on the relation between "fugitive democracy" and "Black fugitivity" as well as Toni Morrison's Paradise and Colson Whitehead's The Underground Railroad, literary fiction as a form of political theory by reading.

Instructor(s): George Shulman     Terms Offered: TBD
Equivalent Course(s): PLSC 40315, KNOW 40315, GNSE 40315, AMER 40315

CRES 44000. Cultura visual y esclavitud en Iberoamérica. 100 Units.

La esclavitud en las Américas no fue únicamente un sistema de organización socio-económica fundamentado en el trabajo coactivo. Este también conllevó la gestación de complejas y heterogéneas formas de producción cultural. En el contexto del moderno sistema de la plantación, ello en parte implicó una inédita articulación filosófica de las relaciones entre poder, raza y cuerpo, sofisticadas formas sincréticas de musicalidad y religiosidad populares, así como la producción de numerosas representaciones artísticas en las que se simbolizaron las conflictivas y a veces insólitas relaciones entre amos y esclavos. En este seminario nos enfocaremos en una serie de artefactos en los que se dramatiza puntualmente la intersección entre cultural visual y dominación esclavista en el mundo iberoamericano, prestándole especial atención a sus encuadres transatlánticos y a sus relaciones con los proyectos de constitución nacional en el siglo XIX. Nuestro objetivo es identificar el lugar de lo visual al interior de las cultura de la esclavitud --las lógicas de sus funcionamientos-- a partir del reconocimiento de algunas de sus zonas menos estudiadas. Examinaremos una selección de expresiones relativas a la "alta" pintura, las dimensiones visuales de los reglamentos de esclavos, ciertas modalidades performáticas de las prácticas evangélicas y del teatro popular, y la dialéctica de lo visible y lo invisible en narrativas de esclavos y en algunas producciones efímeras de la cultura material.

Instructor(s): Agnes Lugo-Ortiz     Terms Offered: Spring
Note(s): Taught in Spanish. Open to advanced undergraduates with consent of instructor.
Equivalent Course(s): CMLT 44000, SPAN 44000, LACS 44000

CRES 44502. Black Theology: Liberation or Reconciliation. 100 Units.


Equivalent Course(s): THEO 44502

CRES 44606. Race and Literature. 100 Units.

Although in the mid 1920s the poet Countee Cullen deemed it a puzzle why God would "make a poet black, and bid him sing," it is arguable that from the rise of modernism, through what Mark McGurl calls The Program Era (designating the rise of creative writing programs as the dominant force shaping American literature), and into the present, it has become almost impossible to think of literature and race or identity as being at odds. To make poets and writers is to make them black, Asian, Latinx, etc. By reading a series of literary works and literary histories, we will seek to understand why making race and making identity have become co-implicated on the American scene. Texts: Walter Benn Michaels, Our America, Mark McGurl, The Program Era, William Faulkner, Absalom, Absalom!, Langston Hughes, The Big Sea, Claude McKay, Home to Harlem, Maxine Hong Kingston, The Woman Warrior, Sandra Cisneros, The House on Mango Street, and Toni Morrison, A Mercy. This course will have a particular focus on guiding students through the conventions of academic writing in the Humanities. (20th/21st)

Instructor(s): Ken Warren     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): ENGL 44606

CRES 45264. New Directions in Postcolonial Studies. 100 Units.

Postcolonial studies emerged as an influential sub-field in English departments in the metropolitan academy in the last decades of the twentieth century. This course is an attempt to identify and map the new directions that postcolonial studies appears to be currently moving into, a few decades on. Some of these shifts are clearly signaled, while others might be less perceptible. Even as it engages with new and urgent issues, adopts methods opened up by new technologies, and identifies fresh objects of study that promise greater relevance and staying power, postcolonial studies is also encountering challenges to its historical focus and its method as critique. We will focus on six key developments in the field: 1.

Instructor(s): Rajeswari Sunder Rajan     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): ENGL 45264

CRES 45700. Race and Capitalism. 100 Units.

This course will address issues of race and capitalism.

Instructor(s): M. Dawson     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): PLSC 45710

CRES 45732. Prejudice and Discrimination: Individual Cost and Response. 100 Units.

This foundational diversity class explores the origins and practices of racial/ethnic prejudice, stereotypes, and discrimination, and how demographic factors such as class, gender, sexuality, and nationality intersect to solidify and perpetuate inequality. We will explore the resulting psychological, economic, and sociopolitical tolls on individuals, and also examine various individual responses that can mitigate the negative impacts of or engage in resistance towards such discrimination (such as racial/ethnic identity development, deliberate retention of heritage culture, and social/political mobilization). Moreover, we will examine how these individual responses together with organized and collective efforts can bring about social changes. This class consciously expands a dominant binary discourse of race to develop a more inclusive and complex paradigm that accurately reflects the diversity of contemporary America.

Equivalent Course(s): SSAD 45732, CRES 25732, SSAD 25732

CRES 46751. Of Whiteness. 100 Units.

In his essay "The Souls of White Folk," WEB Du Bois asks, "But what on earth is whiteness that one should so desire it?" This course will explore a multiethnic cultural and theoretical archive that grapples with the patterned and partial irrationality of this excessive racial desire. How does whiteness structure the racial/social field? What mechanisms regulate-or have regulated-populations' access to and desire for it? (18th/19th)

Instructor(s): Christopher Taylor     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): ENGL 46751

CRES 49001. Colloquium: Slavery & Emancipations-Atlantic Histories. 100 Units.

This course explores political, economic, and cultural linkages among Europe, Africa, and the Americas, as they were fashioned and reconstructed through slavery and the slave trade, slave emancipations and post-emancipation labor regimes, post-abolition colonial projects and post-emancipation racial ideologies and anticolonial liberation movements. Toward the end of the twentieth century, academic historiography revived what in shorthand fashion is termed an "Atlantic world" as a frame of historical analysis. The premises of varying Atlantic frameworks will receive attention in order to explore ways to think historically about material, ideological, and symbolic connections fashioned by slavery and the slave trade and the refashioning of these relationships in a world whose inter-connections were increasingly not premised on the illegitimacy of laws and many practices of enslavement.

Instructor(s): J. Saville     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): Graduate Students Only
Equivalent Course(s): LACS 69001, HIST 69001

CRES 50101. The Problem with Theory. 100 Units.

This graduate course offers a critical introduction to comparative theoretical methods by attending to theory's political and epistemological antagonisms and how they have shaped the ways in which we read literature and art. The seminar begins by tracing critical theory's historical contours-from the high theory boom of the 70s and 80s and the rise of postcolonial, performance, and queer theory in the 90s and 2000s to contemporary critical theory in a comparative context. The course thus attends to problems in thinking about critical theory's scope, boundaries, and canons, as not only as a mode of doing thought but as a site for disciplinary and institutional critique. The seminar explores how theory has both emerged from and animates the worldliness of literature and art as textured imprints of historicity, imagination, and experience across social, cultural and political contexts.

Instructor(s): Leah Feldman     Terms Offered: Autumn
Note(s): This course fulfills the fall core requirement for first-year Ph.D. students in Comparative Literature.
Equivalent Course(s): CMLT 50101, ENGL 50101, GNSE 50102

CRES 50755. Race/Capital/Extraction. 100 Units.

In the concluding chapters of Capital, Vol. 1, Karl Marx describes the origins of capitalism as an enterprise "written in the annals of mankind in letters of blood and fire." This process that Marx christened as "so-called primitive accumulation" rests fundamentally on the extraction of raw materials through colonial regimes of enclosure and the brutal exploitation of racialized labor. Nonetheless, the relationship between race and capital is not sufficiently elaborated in Marx's oeuvre. In turn, this course will reconsider Marxist concepts and categories through a critical evaluation of the analytical domains of "race," "capital," and "extraction." Moreover, students will consider the extent to which these domains productively modify each other: Does capitalism as an economic system depend on race as its ideological substrate? Can race be understood as an extractive project founded the violent enslavement and mercantile transit of racialized laboring subjects? How are the production of race and the accumulation of capital transformed by extractive economies of fossil fuels and metallic ores? To this end, students will consult the writings of Sylvia Wynter, W.E.B. Du Bois, C.L.R. James, Claudia Jones, Walter Rodney, and Octavia Butler. .

Instructor(s): Ryan Jobson
Equivalent Course(s): CHSS 50755, ANTH 50755

CRES 51515. An Island is a World: Readings in Caribbean Ethnography. 100 Units.

This advanced graduate seminar examines the construction of the Caribbean as an object of anthropological study. The aims of this seminar are twofold. Following Michel-Rolph Trouillot, this seminar will attend to "Caribbean as viewed by anthropologists, but also about anthropology as viewed from the Caribbean." In turn, students will consider whether the Caribbean is an exceptional or exemplary geography in the anthropological imagination.Accordingly, students will consult the writings of Trouillot, MG Smith, Constance Sutton, Lynn Bolles, and Deborah Thomas, among others. Additionally, students will be introduced to the Raymond T. Smith Papers in Special Collections at the Regenstein Library.

Instructor(s): Ryan Jobson
Equivalent Course(s): LACS 51515, ANTH 51515

CRES 52802. Politics of Intimacy. 100 Units.

This course draws from interdisciplinary debates to position intimate forms in relation to broader textures of emotion and ethics, desire and race, labor and liberation. Heuristically, intimacy allows us to attend to practices that spill beyond more dyadic understandings of ostensibly private domains of sexuality or kinship as opposed to public forms of economic production and labor. Course readings, taken primarily but not exclusively from the Latin American region, will consider specific instances when the gathering together of bodies in close quarters (e.g. in arrangements of domestic servitude, colonial-era monasteries and convents, indigenous slave-holding in the Americas, settler households and adoptive parentage configurations) became problematic and subject to governmental intervention. We will further ask how, in moments of colonial reform, post-colonial change, and de-colonial mobilization, intimate forms became newly offensive but also grounded (and continue to ground) emergent claims to life and rights. The course ends by meditating on the entailments of intimacy for ethnography, namely, as a model of research rooted in attachments and vulnerabilities rather than spectatorship and distance.

Instructor(s): Mareike Winchell
Equivalent Course(s): GNSE 52802, LACS 52802, ANTH 52802

CRES 54104. On Man: Sociogenesis and Subjectivation. 100 Units.

In this course, students will read and engage with how "Man" has been conceptualized and critiqued in certain areas of philosophy and critical theory. The class begins with Man's emergence in colonial contexts, with readings from Frantz Fanon, Homi Bhabha, and Sylvia Wynter. Students will also contend with Man's intersubjectivity with the "Subject" with readings from Michel Foucault, Judith Butler, Jose Munoz, and Hortense Spillers. Memoirs, novels, and auto-documentary films supplement this courses' exploration of the genealogies of "Man." (20th/21st)

Instructor(s): C. Riley Snorton     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): GNSE 54104, ENGL 54104

CRES 61102. The L.A. Rebellion and the Politics of Black Cinema. 100 Units.


Equivalent Course(s): CMST 61102

CRES 62604. Visual Culture in American Life, 1800-1915. 100 Units.

How has American society's insatiable thirst for visual media influenced the way US citizens have viewed one another and portrayed themselves to others? In this course we will explore the significance of what Raymond Williams called the "cultural revolution" for the lives of ordinary men and women in the United States. This history encompasses subjects that have retained their relevance in contemporary life, including racial and ethnic stereotypes, armchair travel, virtual versus lived reality, authenticity and artifice, mass entertainment, city life, celebrity, and gender. Readings will include a series of theoretical works in combination with articles and monographs, to provide a broader underpinning for the problems of perception and historical analysis at play in this realm of scholarly thought and practice.

Instructor(s): A. Lippert     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): HIST 62604, AMER 62604, GNSE 62604

CRES 62805. Colloquium: American Conservatism, 1945-Present. 100 Units.

This course explores the burgeoning historiography of American conservatism, tracing the movement from its grassroots origins after World War II to its institutionalization and militarization in the Reagan era to the rise of evangelicalism and Tea Party politics. We will focus on the role of women in the movement, the ideological alliances in its founding, and the roles of particular conservative groups in the movement's history. This course will move both chronologically and thematically to explore fundamental questions about activism and radicalization, grassroots and top-down ideologies, and the impact of conservative thought and institutions upon American society and state in the late twentieth century.

Equivalent Course(s): HIST 62805, AMER 62805, GNSE 62805

CRES 69002. Colloquium: Slavery and Emancipations-Atlantic Histories. 100 Units.

This course explores political, economic, and cultural aspects of slave emancipations, emphasizing major transformations in Caribbean-Atlantic and North American slave systems since the first abolitionist measures of the mid-eighteenth through the early twentieth centuries. The interpretive possibilities opened by varying comparative frameworks will be considered in order to explore ways to think historically about material, ideological, and symbolic connections fashioned by slavery and the slave trade and the refashioning of these relationships in a world whose interconnections were increasingly premised on the illegitimacy of laws and many of the practices of enslavement.

Equivalent Course(s): HIST 69002, LACS 69002