Course Listings - Spring 2010
Our roster of cross-listed courses is updated frequently; students should visit individual department sites for the most current listings.
AAS 310/ENG 324/MUS 256
Music from the Hispanophone Caribbean
Seminar S01: 1:30 pm – 4:20 pm M
Alexandra T. Vazquez
This interdisciplinary seminar utilizes the musical cultures of Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, and Cuba to reflect upon the aesthetic, migratory, and social histories of the Hispanophone Caribbean. Students will listen to the sounded legacies of conquest, slavery, colonialism, and U.S. intervention and occupation. The effects of transnational migration on music's performance and reception will also be one of the key themes in the course. We will not only consider the creative traditions and receptive worlds embedded in musical recordings, but will also pay attention to music's traces in literature, film, and other ephemera.
AAS 314/COM 396
Model Memoirs: The Life Stories of International Fashion Models
Seminar S01: 7:30 pm – 10:20 pm W
Wendy L. Belcher
This course explores the life-writing of American, African, and Asian women in the fashion industry as a launching point for thinking about race, gender, and class. How do ethnicity and femininity intersect? How are authenticity and difference commodified? How do women construct identities through narrative and negotiate their relationships to their bodies, families, and nations? Course will include guest lectures by fashion editors and models; discussions of contemporary television programs, global fashion, and cultural studies; and student self-narratives about their relationships with cultural standards of beauty, whether vexed or not.
AAS 323/AMS 321
The Black Melting Pot: Interrogating Race, Difference and Identity
Seminar S01: 1:30 pm – 4:20 pm T
As the demographics of Blacks in America change, we are compelled to re-think the dominant stories of who African Americans are, and from whence they come. In this seminar, we will explore the deep cultural, genealogical, national origin, regional, and class-based diversity of people of African descent in the United States. Materials for the course will include scholarly writings as well as memoir and fiction. In addition to reading assignments, students will be expected to complete an ethnographic or oral history project based upon research conducted within a Black community in the U.S., and a music or visual art based presentation of work.
AAS 339/ENG 339
Josephine Baker and the Modern
Seminar S01: 10:00 am – 10:50 am MW
Anne A. Cheng
What does a black burlesque star have to do with the making of Euro-American modernity? This course situates the performance art of Josephine Baker as a dynamic fulcrum through which to trace the unexpected connections between the invention of what might be called a "modernist style" and the staging of black skin at the turn of the 20th century. We will study her work in film, photography, and cinema as an active and profound engagement with a range of modernist innovations and theories in the fields of film, photography, architecture, art, and literature.
AAS 348/ENG 348
Black Popular Music Culture
Lecture L01: 12:30 pm – 1:20 pm TTh
Daphne A. Brooks, Imani Perry
An introduction to major historical, theoretical, performative, and aesthetic movements and trends in black popular music culture from the 19th century through the present day.
AAS 359/ENG 354
African American Literature: Harlem Renaissance to Present
Lecture L01 : 12:30 pm – 1:20 pm MW
J. Emmanuel Raymundo
This course examines African American literature in the 20th century emphasizing the relationship between cultural production and historical phenomenon. What is the relationship between African American cultural production and historical phenomena like the Great Migration and key cultural movements like the Harlem Renaissance in American life? Additionally, how do we place African American literature and cultural production in a global narrative that encompasses decolonization, multiculturalism and globalization? Primary texts include novels, short stories, some poetry and video and performance art.
AAS 364/WWS 492
Race, Drugs, and Drug Policy in America
Lecture L01: 11:00 am – 11:50 am TTh
Keith A. Wailoo
From "Chinese opium" to Oxycontin, and from cocaine and "Crack" to BiDil, drug controversies reflect enduring debates about the role of medicine, the law, the policing of ethnic identity, and racial difference. This course explores the history of controversial substances (prescription medicines, over-the-counter products, black market substances, psychoactive drugs), and how, from cigarettes to alcohol and opium, these substances become vehicles for heated debates over immigration, identity, cultural and biological difference, criminal character, the line between legality and illegality, and the boundaries of the normal and the pathological.
AAS 368/REL 368/POL 424
Topics in African American Religion: Black Religion and Black Political Thought
Seminar S01: 7:30 pm – 10:20 pm Th
Melissa V. Harris-Lacewell
Scholars of the African American experience have located the black church as the cultural, social, and political womb of the black community. This research tends to think of the church as a structure that brings actors into contact with one another; it has paid less attention to the church as a place that brings actors into contact with ideas. This course will use a variety of classic and contemporary texts about black political thought as an entry into investigating the connections between black religious ideas and political activism. The class links the work on religion to an intensive introduction to black political thought.
AAS 372/ART 374/AMS 372
Postblack – Contemporary African American Art
Seminar S01: 7:30 pm – 10:20 pm T
Chika O. Okeke-Agulu
As articulated by Thelma Golden, postblack refers to the work of African American artists who emerged in the 1990s with ambitious, irreverent, and sassy work. Though hard to define, postblack suggested the emergence of a generation of artists removed from the long tradition of black affirmation of the Harlem Renaissance, black empowerment of the Black Arts movement, and identity politics of the 1980s and early 90s. This seminar provides an opportunity for a deep engagement with the work of African American artists of the past decade. It will involve critical and theoretical readings on multiculturalism, race, identity, and contemporary art.
AAS 379/ANT 379
Black Europe: Race, Ethnicity, and Diaspora in Contemporary Europe
Seminar S01 : 1:30 pm – 4:20 pm W
Laurie N. McIntosh
European cities are increasingly being reshaped by migration, EU enlargement, and economic integration. Against this backdrop, issues of diversity, difference, and cultural friction are particularly salient topics in cross-cultural research on race and racialization. We will specifically explore the contemporary presence and impact of the African diaspora throughout Europe.