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Fall 2017 Course Offerings

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Fall 2017 Course Roster

Race and Ethnicity in the United States: Social Constructs, Real World Consequences – LSP 1105 (also SOC 1104). This course will examine race and ethnic relations between Whites, Blacks, Latinos, and Asians in the United States. The goal of this course is for students to understand how the history of race and ethnicity in the U.S. affects opportunity structures in, for example, education, employment, housing, and health. Through this course students will gain a better understanding of how race and ethnicity stratifies the lives of individuals in the U.S. Instructor: Steven Alvarado. MW 2:55 - 4:10. 3 credits.

Spanish for Heritage Speakers - LSP 2020 (also SPAN 2000). A course designed to expand bilingual student's knowledge of Spanish providing them with ample opportunities to develop and improve each of the basic language skills. Prerequisite: LPS score 56 or higher, SAT II 590 or higher, CASE placement, or permission of instructor. Instructor: Mary K. Redmond.  MWF 11:15 – 12:05. 4 credits.

Introduction to Latina/o Studies – LSP 2100 (also AMST 2106).  This course is an introduction to Latina/o Studies, a discipline that investigates the historical, socio-political and economic conditions and experiences of Latina/os in the United States, including but not limited to Mexican-Americans/ Chicana/os, Puerto Ricans/Nuyoricans, Cuban-Americans, Dominican-Americans, and Central and South Americans. This course examines the production and performance of Latina/o identity.  We begin by asking the following questions: How is Latina/o identity defined?  How is latinidad performed?  We then focus on the politics of ethnic labels and segue into both the Chicana/o and Nuyorican movements as initial sites of Latina/o resistance.  We continue by analyzing the immigration of other Latina/o groups such as Cubans and Dominicans, alongside Central and South Americans into the United States, by attending to current issues such as immigration policies and reform.  In situating the class around “Latina/o” as both an umbrella term and an enacted social construction, we are then able to turn our attention to representations of latinidad within different genres of cultural expressions, such as music and literature alongside critical theory. Instructor: Karen Jaime. TR 11:40 – 12:55. 4 credits.

(Im)migration and (Im)migrants: Then and Now – LSP 2152 (also GOVT 2152).  One in ten residents of the United States was born outside the country. These people include international students, temporary workers, refugees, asylees, permanent residents, naturalized U.S. citizens and undocumented migrants. The arrival of these newcomers affects the cultural, economic, political and social dynamics of the country. Since immigration shows no signs of slowing down—in the United States or in many other nations of the world—the causes, consequences and repercussions of immigration will be one of the most important topics of the 21- century. Therefore this class will examine the history and contemporary role of immigration in the U.S. political system. The class will focus on two aspects of immigration: First, a historical examination of immigration policy from the founding of the country all the way forward to the current debate over immigration reform. Second, we will evaluate and assess the political incorporation and political participation of immigrant groups in the U.S. and determine whether immigrants are being incorporated, and if not, why? We will reflect on many important questions including the costs and benefits of immigration, issues related to civil rights and civil liberties, and finally propose our own ideas and solutions to the current immigration reform debate. Instructor: Sergio Garcia-Rios. MWF 10:10 – 11:00. 4 credits.

Sociology of Health and Ethnic Minorities - LSP 2200 (also DSOC 2200). This course is a critical introduction to the study of the sociology of health by examining the health status of ethnic minorities. The primary goal of this course is to understand the determinants in the health status as well as access and utilization of health services of Latino and other ethnic minorities in the U.S. We will cover the following areas: 1). The distribution of illness by social and demographic factors, and the social forces affecting inter-group differences; 2). ethnicity, culture, and environment as contributors to health risks, and/or protective behaviors; 3). the organization of the health system and its allocation of resources in the health services; 4). the access to and utilization of health care services by ethnic minorities. Instructor: Pilar Parra. TR 10:10 – 11:25.  3 credits.

Caribbean Worlds - LSP 2212 (also ASRC 2212, ENGL 2512). This introductory course to the study of the Caribbean will begin with examinations of what constitutes the Caribbean and an understanding of Caribbean space.  We will then study its peoples, contact between Europeans and indigenous peoples, African enslavement and resistance, Indian indentureship and other forced migrations.  By mid semester we will identify a cross-section of leading thinkers and ideas. We will also pay attention to issues of identity, migration and the creation of the Caribbean diaspora. Constructions of tourist paradise and other stereotypes and the development of critical Caribbean institutions and national development will be discussed as we read and listen to some representative oral and written literature of the Caribbean and view some relevant film on the Caribbean. This inter-disciplinary survey provides students with a foundation for more specialized coursework on the Caribbean offered in our department. Instructor: Carol Boyce Davies. TR 2:55 - 4:10. 3 credits.

Cultures and Communities – LSP 2300/4300. Conceived as a service-learning course, the centerpiece here is targeted, engaged research and arts work with Latino/a culture-related organizations in Tompkins County like Cultura!,  No más lágrimas, and the Latino Civic Association.  The core idea is that students will learn while participating in meaningful activities that will enhance arts and culture partnerships.  Faculty will provide guidelines and resources for students to work within existing projects or to develop their own ideas; community partners will provide networks and planning assistance.  All students will be asked to develop  a comprehensive learning portfolio on their semester’s work.  Instructor: Debra Castillo. MW 2:55 – 4:10. Variable 1-3 credit hours depending on level of commitment. 

Representing Racial Encounters/Encountering Racial Representations – LSP 2770 (also ENGL 2770).  This team-taught course uses literature and popular culture, alongside literary, social, and cultural theory to consider how people from different cultures encounter and experience each other. The course explores travel from multiple perspectives, the concept of dark tourism, and the cultural industry of racial representation. Designed for the general student population, the course specifically appeals to students traveling abroad, or who in the future will work with diverse communities (for example, students with interests in medicine, law, labor, government, business, the hospitality industry, or in the fields of gender, queer, or ethnic studies). The course serves as an introduction to the critical inquiries and scholarly fields of the English department. Instructor(s):  Ella Diaz and Mukoma wa Ngugi. MWF 10:10 – 11:00. 4 credits.

Organizing for Immigrant Worker Rights – LSP 3068 (also ILRLR 3068). This class examines the institutional processes of enforcing immigrant worker rights. We begin by reviewing the legal foundations of immigrant labor, including the current immigration enforcement regime, and the role of legal status in labor standards enforcement protections.  We examine how organized labor has evolved with regards to immigrant workers, shifting from supporting employer sanctions in 1986, to repudiating them as a tool for employer control in 2001.  We then evaluate the role that immigrant workers have played in the revitalization of the labor movement, and the challenges that remain for unions.  Beyond unions, we examine the emergence of new forms of worker representation, including the varying types of worker centers.  We focus on the proliferation of day labor centers, and more recently, non-union efforts to organize workers in the restaurant industry.  We even consider the role of undocumented workers in the public sector, made possible through the increased use of subcontracting. We look at how public entities have turned to worker organizations to help hold employers accountable, and how workers have turned to local governments to strengthen worker protections (such as higher minimum wages and strengthened penalties for wage theft), as well as how states have become new targets for policy change  (such as recent victories for domestic workers).  We also discuss binational efforts to advance immigrant worker rights.  We end by considering prospects for federal immigration reform, and the implications these proposals may have for immigrant worker rights. Instructor: Shannon Gleeson. TR 1:25 – 2:40. 4 credits.

Nueva York: Caribbean Urbanisms – LSP 3470 (also SPAN 3470). To what extent is New York City part of the Caribbean?  This course explores the ways in which writers from Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the Dominican Republic write New York, whether as tourists, residents, or exiles.  We will read about places like Coney Island, Wall Street, the World Trade Center, and Washington Heights.  Beginning with the chronicles of José Martí and other Cubans in the late 19th century, we then turn our attention to surrealist visions of catastrophy (1920s & 30s), followed by Nuyorico (1950s), Bronx hip hop (1970s), the gay underground scene (late 1970s & early 80s), 9/11, and the contemporary Dominican diaspora in Upper Manhattan.  Topics include exile, nostalgia, transnationalism, imperialism, aesthetics, performance, race, and sexuality. Instructor: Shawn McDaniel. TR 1:25 – 2:40. 4 credits.

Telling to Live: Critical Examinations of Testimonio – LSP 3680 (also ENGL 3680, LATA 3681). This course examines the literary genre of testimonio for its form and content. A type of writing known in Latin America, testimonio is also an important writing style in U.S. Latina/a and Chicana/o traditions. Our exploration moves through different times and spaces (geography) as we consider what testimonio is and does. We will also investigate different interpretations of testimonio in visual and performance art. Instructor:  Ella Diaz. MW 2:55 – 4:10. 4 credits.

Spoken Word, Hip-Hop Theater, and the Politics of Performance – LSP 3754 (also PMA 3754). In this course, we will critically examine the production and performance of race, ethnicity, sexuality, and gender through literature and contemporary performance genres such as spoken word, slam poetry, and hip-hop theater. Beginning with the 1960s and the Civil Rights Movement, we will employ an interdisciplinary approach, placing theory directly into conversation with practice as we move to explore the ways in which poets and performers create work that engages with the politics of identity.  How does the move from the page to the stage, change the manner in which traditional life stories are told?  What role does the audience play?  What avenues are then further opened up through the advent of contemporary performance practices such as hip-hop theater?  What is the relationship between vernacular cultural productions and the performance of politics?  What role, if any, does class play?  How do genres such as spoken word, slam poetry, and hip-hop theatre serve to make visible the life narratives of people of a particular socio-economic class? Instructor: Karen Jaime. TR 1:25 – 2:40. 4 credits.

The United States – LSP 3777 (also ANTHR 3777, AMST 3777). The anthropological inquiry into one's culture is never a neutral exercise.  This course will explore issues in the cultural construction of the United States as a "pluralistic" society.  We will look at the ideological context for the production of a cultural profile predicated upon ideas that are intrinsic to American images of identity such as individualism, freedom, and equality and the way these are applied in practice.  The course readings will include historic documents and accounts, popular writings, and recent ethnographies on the United States.  Instructor:  Vilma Santiago-Irizarry. TR 2:55 – 4:10.  4 credits.

Contemporary Issues in Latina/o/Latin America – LSP 4000/6000 (also LATA 4000/6000).  Interested in Latina/o Studies and Latin American Studies? This course will explore topics in Anthropology, Art, Economics, History, Literature, Government, Sociology, and more, of US Latina/o and Latin American contexts. Course features guest speakers from Cornell and other institutions. Course requirements: Attend a total of 12 programming events of your choice throughout the semester sponsored by the Latina/o Studies and Latin American Studies (you should plan for at least one a week), and write a brief follow-up critical or analytic report on some aspect of what you learned.  These reports are due within one week of the event. Instructor: Deb Castillo. 1 credit.

Latino Politics as Racial Politics – LSP 4283 (also GOVT 4283). This class will examine the history and contemporary role of Latinos as a minority group in the U.S. political system. This course is intended as an overview of the political position of Latinos y Latinas in the United States. We place special emphasis on how Latinos became racial group which allows us to focus on political relationships between Latinos and non-Latinos as they relate to political institutions, political parties, voting coalitions, representation and public policy. Instructor: Sergio Garica-Rios. M 12:20 – 2:15. 4 credits.

Migration in the Américas: Engaged Research Methods and Practice – LSP 4312/6312 (also ILR 4312/6312).  This innovative course will introduce students to basic concepts and developments related to migration in Central America, Mexico, and the United States via engaged learning and research. The course will be organized around core themes such as the challenges and ethics of working with vulnerable populations, workplaces and working conditions, oral histories/testimonios, and immigration policy and enforcement practices. Students will learn qualitative methodologies for field research, which they will apply in short projects. This can be taken as a stand-alone course, but it is also a prerequisite for an optional winter intersession practicum. Instructor(s): Debra Castillo and Maria Cook. TR 11:40 – 12:55. 4 credits. Open to juniors, seniors, and graduate students.