Cracking the Color Lines: Asian/Black Relations in the U.S.
- Nitasha Tamar Sharma - 847/467-0448 - Crowe Hall 5-131
- University Hall 101 - TuTh 9:30AM - 10:50AM
Overview of classDo Asians and Blacks in the U.S. have anything in common or are they incommensurably different groups doomed to conflict and distance? This provocative class analyzes the historical relations of Asians and Blacks in this country in order to analyze their past tensions and potential and actual cross-cultural collaborations. This interdisciplinary, multimedia historical examination of Black and Asian race relations allows us to understand and interrogate the gaps and alliances between two non-White groups who face distinct yet overlapping experiences with racism. Through readings, films, and internet websites, we will cover the following topics: the historical and overlapping racialization and sexualization of Blacks and Asians; international "Afro-Asian" connections; slavery and its legacy on perceptions and experiences of Blacks in the U.S.; causes and consequences of early Asian migration and anti-Asian legislation. We then focus on WWII as a crucible of new racial and economic dynamics that differentially locate Blacks and Asians in the post-war economy, including the entrance of second wave Asian immigrants following the Immigration Act of 1965 and the impact of 1970s deindustrialization on urban America. We turn to analyze contemporary theories of race and identity beyond Black and White (what are Asians: Black or White, or...?) to reconceptualize inter-minority relations and examine the burgeoning racial consciousness of the 1960s. Following a section on the Third World internationalism of Black and Asian leaders (e.g., W.E.B. du Bois and Mao Tse-tung) and the overlapping Civil Rights, Black Power, and Asian American movements, we conclude this quarter with an analysis of stereotypes (such as the model minority myth) used to pit Asians and Blacks against one another. Overall, this look at Asian/Black historical relations reveals how Whiteness frames, but does not determine, inter-minority relations.
Evaluation MethodClass participation
Class AttributesHistorical Studies Distro Area
Interdisciplinary Distro - See Rules
Social & Behavioral Sciences Distro Area
Current as of 06/15/13 01:18:04 AM