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    Vassar College
  Jan 18, 2018
Catalogue 2017-2018
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AMST 365 - Racial Borderlands

1 unit(s)
Borders have been made to demarcate geographic and social spaces. As such, they often divide and separate national states, populations, and their political and cultural practices. However, borders also serve as spaces of convergence and transgression. Employing a comparative and relational approach to the study of American cultures, this seminar examines concepts, theories and methodologies about race and ethnicity that emerged along the U.S. racial borderlands between the 18th and 20th centuries. We also consider the historical and contemporary ways in which discourses about race have been used to define, organize, and separate different social groups within the U.S. racial empire state. Throughout the semester we ask the following questions: How does race emerge as an idea in the U.S. political and social landscape? What is the relationship between race, gender and empire? What are the relational and historical ways in which ideas about race have been used to arrange and rank distinct social groups in the U.S. imperial body? How have these hierarchies shifted across space and time and how have different groups responded to these racial formations? Lastly, this seminar considers the future potential and limits of solidarity as a practice organized around ideas about race and exclusion for different marginalized populations within the U.S. empire state. Carlos Alamo.

Not offered in 2017/18.

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