Santa Clara University

Ethnic Studies Program

Course Description

Lower-Division Courses

ETHN 05 - Introduction to the Study of Race and Ethnicity in the United States (REQUIRED FOR ALL NEW MINORS/MAJORS)

This course focuses on immigration and intercultural race relations for the major cultures of color in the United States: African American, Asian American, Latina/o, and Native American. We will discuss each group historically in relationship to each other and the dominant culture. Through critical readings, class discussion, and film, students will have opportunities to develop a solid intercultural foundation to understanding race and cultural diversity in United States. In addition, this course creates a basis for classes offered by all faculty in the Ethnic Studies Program particularly the introductory level courses. The course also serves as an introduction to the minor in the Ethinc Studies Program. (4 units)

ETHN 10 - Introduction to Native American Studies

Interdisciplinary course which will explore the diverse cultural life of Native Americans. Topics inclulde Native history, politics, economics, education, health, entertainment & recreation, identity, law & government, art, literature, performance and religion. Students will explore key debates within Native American Studies in relation to identity and identification: gender, sexuality, race, class and ethnicity.(4 units)

ETHN 20 - Introduction to Chicana/o and Latina/Latino Studies

A survey course in Latina/Latino studies addressing key issues in Latina/o communities in the United States. Focuses on such issues as immigration, culture, family, family and kinship, identity, gender roles, religion, education, politics, and labor force participation. (4 units)

ETHN 30 - Introduction to African American Studies

In this course, we will engage major debates about the history, politics and cultures of communities of African descent living in the United States.  As the course unfolds, we will examine texts at the cutting edge of interdisciplinary scholarship in African American Studies in order to explore the key themes of origins, power, community, identity and expression that are central to understanding race-related issues.  In addition, we will create innovative research projects that help us develop our own positions about the ideology of race, the dynamics of group consciousness as well as the significance of collective action, self-determination and aesthetics to the African American experience. (4 units)

ETHN 35 - African American Women Writers

A study of women writers of the Harlem Renaissance period, illustrating the intersection of gender, race, and class. We will read, discuss, and write about paradigms that lead to racial inequity and social injustice while analyzing themes of gender empowerment, miscegenation, colorism, passing, sexuality, and motherhood. Using poetry, short stories, plays, and film, we will identify how these women engaged in acts of resistance as they sought to rescue themselves from negative stereotypes and redefine themselves in the new world. (4 units)
- Also listed as ENGL 35.

ETHN 40 - Introduction to Asian American Studies

Multidisciplinary survey of Asian Americans. Asian cultural heritage, immigration, and the formation of Asian American communities. World views and values, religious beliefs, family and kinship, language. Contemporary community issues of identity, sex roles, stereotyping, employment, and education. (4 units)

ETHN 50 - Introduction to Filipino American Studies

Course will address mainstream representations of the Filipino American community. Students will read 20th-century works, written by and about Filipino Americans, with an emphasis on four relevant themes: the legacy of Spanish Colonialism and American Imperialism; U.S. politics and the history of Filipino American activism and resistance; problems of identity as it relates to class, gender/ sexuality, mixed heritages, and generational differences; and Filipino Americans and popular culture. (4 units)

ETHN 51 – Intro to the South Asian Experience in the US

Course will address mainstream representations of the South Asian American community. Students will read 20th-century works, written by and about South Asian Americans, with an emphasis on four relevant themes: the history of South Asian immigrants to the US; U.S. politics and the history of South Asian American activism and resistance; problems of identity as it relates to class, gender/ sexuality, mixed heritages, and generational differences; South Asian Americans and popular culture; and the future of South Asian Americans in the US and the reverse brain drain to India. (4 units)

ETHN 55 - Cross-Racial Electoral Politics

This class examines the participation of racial and ethnic minorities in traditional forms of electoral activity in the U.S. with a particular focus on the political behavior of African American and Latinas/os in the last half of the 20th century.  Throughout the course we will examine the obstacles to minority political participations as well as the efforts to remove barriers and the enduring forms of structural and resource constraints that dispropor-tionately impact racial and ethnic minority communities.  A critical examination of the upcoming elections will feature prominently throughout this course and students will have the opportunity to examines local elections more closely through an original research project designed to study the intersection of race and voting in San Jose, California.  (4 units)

ETHN 60 – Intro to Journalism: Focus on America's Diverse, Multi-Racial Identities and Communities

Introduction to the theories and techniques of journalism with emphasis on covering diverse, multiracial communities fairly and accurately, the role of journalism in a democracy, news values and ethics, reporting and writing techniques and discussion. Student work may be published in SJ Beez, an online ethnic news media outlet for the San Jose area. Includes weekly lab and interaction within the community.
Also listed as (FILL IN).  Fulfills Core ELSJ requirement and associated with Democracy and Race, Place and Social Inequalities pathways.(4 units)
- Also listed as COMM 40.


ETHN 65 - Drama of Diversity

Addresses issues of race, ethnicity, class, gender, and sexuality through the lens of American Theatre by several groups outside of the dominant culture including, but not limited to, works from the African American, Asian American, Chicana/o, Native American and LGBT perspective. (4 units)
- Also listed as THTR 65.

ETHN 95 - African American Independent Filmmakers


This class provides an in-depth analysis and historical overview of independent African American filmmakers who made significant contributions to the genre of film.  We will examine how African American filmmakers used film as a medium to heighten the consciousness of their audience, combat negative stereotypes, give voice to marginalized or underrepresented groups, and raise social awareness about issues affecting their diverse communities.  Using film and text, we will read, discuss, and write about paradigms that lead to inequity and injustice.  Specifically, we will examine the intersection of gender, race, and class, and note how these dynamics are illustrated in the cinema of African Americans.  We will also understand how African American filmmakers were able to rise above adversity, hone and sustain their art, while confronting various forms of oppression. (4 units)

ETHN 96 - Race, Class, and Culture Through Film

This course uses film and literature as the primary medium to examine issues of race, class, and culture in African Americans, Native Americans, Chicana/os, and Asian Americans. It explores how filmmakers concerned about racism portray the politics, history and culture of the above-mentioned racial groups. While on the one hand culture provides one with certain concepts about race, class and gender, one's social interaction as often portrayed in literature also creates culture. Film and literature are places where race, class, and gender are reified through the production of culture. (4 units)

Upper-Division Courses

ETHN 112 - Native Peoples of the United States and Mexico

Examination of the national policies, ideologies, and attitudes that have shaped the lives of indigenous peoples living along the U.S.-Mexico border. Issues include cultural survival, cultural change, national and individual identity, gender relations, legal and political problems, and intercultural relations. (5 units)

ETHN 120 - Mexican Immigration to the United States

This class will examine the history of Mexican immigration to the U.S. with a particular focus on shifts occurring in the 20th century. We will examine both the historical shifts in U.S.-Mexican relations which have impacted immigration in the region and look specifically at five policy issues: unauthorized immigration, bilingual education, the economic impacts of immigration, the rise in immigrant civic participation, and the relationship between immigration and national security. Ultimately, this class will help students understand and explore one of the most timely and relevant issues impacting the state and the country today. (5 units)

ETHN 121 - Chicana/o Families and Gender Roles

An examination of Chicana/Chicano families in the United States. Addresses two general areas in family research: (1) the historical development of Mexican immigrant families and subsequent generations of communities and families of Mexican Americans, and (2) a life-cycle analysis of families with a specialized focus on gender roles and relations. (5 units)

ETHN 122 - Chicana/o Communities

An examination of the development of the social, cultural, political, and economic structures that shape Chicana/ Chicano communities in the United States. Themes include the evolution of barrios, the historical and contemporary impact of Mexican land grants, ghettoization, education, gangs, employment, and the political economy. (5 units)

ETHN 123 - The Chicana/o Experience

An examination of the major issues in the Chicana/o experience dealing with historical and contemporary topics.  Themes such as race, identity and culture, immigration, community, family, gender, gangs, historical interpretations and the Chicana/o movement will be examined.  Politics and socio-economic conditions, including the farmworker movement and educational concerns will be addressed. (5 units)


ETHN 125 - Latinas/os in the United States

The course examines the experience of Latinas/os in the U.S. by focusing on people of Mexican, Central American (El Salvador, Guatemala, and Nicaragua) and Caribbean (Puerto Rico, Cuba, and the Dominican Republic) descent. The countries of origin, immigration, settlement patterns, comparative issues, and the condition of Latinas/os in the U.S. will be explained. The course content addresses both historical and contemporary issues. (5 units)

ETHN 126 - Latina/o Immigrant Detention & Incorporation in the Age of Terrorism

This class will examine shifts in immigration politics with specific focus on the largest population of immigrants in the U.S., namely Latinas/os. In the course of this examination we will pay particular attention to changes occurring after 1996 and the increasing scrutiny of both documented and undocumented immigrants that has led to surges in the numbers of immigrants detained, apprehended, incarcerated, and deported. We will be mindful of the gendered, class and racialized dynamics at work in the development and execution of new immigration policy, and we will examine the affect of these shifts on concepts of citizenship. In the end the course will compel students to consider the moral, political, and legal implications of an immigration policy focused disproportionately on enforcement and challenge them to find comprehensive alternatives.(5 units)

ETHN 129 - Mexican Popular Catholicism & Gender

From the perspective of the sociology of religion, this course contextualizes the lives of Chicanas/Mexicanas in Mexican popular Catholic tradition, practices, and belief system with particular attention to race, class, gender, and sexuality.  This course repositions feminist analysis from a brief acknowledgement of the influence of Mexican popular Catholicism in the lives of Chicana/Mexicanas to a much more encompassing critical analysis of exactly how Catholicism influences women's everyday experiences.  Through the use of case studies and secondary research, in this class students will explore the creative and complex ways Chicanas/Mexicanas participate in the workforce, at home, in politics, and in public life as people of faith.  (5 units)
- Also listed as TESP 149.

ETHN 132 – The History of Hip Hop
As Chuck D of Public Enemy once said: "rap both dictates and reflects." This course will examine the historical contexts and diasporic flows that have shaped (and been shaped by) one the most important cultural forms on the planet. We will examine the multicultural roots/routes of rap and hip hop from its West African bardic traditions to Caribbean and African American oral traditions; study the development of rap as a musical genre extending from soul, funk, and disco styles; analyze the musical and verbal traits of rap music as exemplary of an urban street/hip hop aesthetic; discuss its influence on musical technology (i.e. sampling) and cultural influences in the mainstream; investigate concepts of authenticity as well as philosophical and political ideologies; review controversies and debates concerning rap music's articulations of race, gender, and sexuality; and examine the global impact of hip hop culture. Musical examples and video documentaries will be used in conjunction with class lectures, discussion, and presentations by guest artists. (5 units)
- Also listed as MUSC 132.
ETHN 135 - African Americans in Postwar Film

World War II stands as one of the most explosive moments in US and global history in the twentieth century because of the myriad ways the conflict influenced the postwar world.  The United States emerged from the war the premiere global superpower in terms of combined military, diplomatic, and financial supremacy but found itself under increased scrutiny due to its history and maintenance of structural or institutionalized racism.  In the midst of military and ideological conflict against the Nazi regime in Germany, and addressing the claims of civil rights and anti-colonial activists, the United States became a composite site of the tensions that defined a democratic society struggling with ongoing racism.  Through readings and discussions, this seminar explores these tensions, which were exacerbated by the rise of anti-racist perspectives in the anthropological and biological sciences just preceding the war. (5 units)
- Also listed as HIST 185.


ETHN 139 - African American Psychology

This course provides an overview of African American psychology. It does so by examining the multi-dimensional nature of identity development of African Americans and the ways in which racism and class impact identity formation. This course approaches psychological development from an African American perspective and reviews current issues in contemporary African American psychology. The course also examines research methodologies and historical trends that have impacted the way we understand the world in general and African Americans specifically.(5 units)
- Also listed as PSYC 189.

ETHN 141 - Asian American Women

An examination of Asian American women from a historical and contemporary framework within U.S. society. Focuses on the struggle for identity and adjustment in the first generation and the conflicts with subsequent generations of Asian American women. Analyzes two major themes: (1) the interplay of gender identity formation and conflict, both in the family and in the paid labor force, and (2) the development of individual and collective survival strategies. (5 units)
- Also listed as WGST 111.

ETHN 142 - Asian American Communities

An examination of selected topics affecting Asian Americans in the United States. Issues include the changing nature of communities, community institutions, anti-Asian violence, occupational glass ceilings, higher education, political mobilization, gender relations, identity formation, and the new patterns of Asian immigration. (5 units)

ETHN 149 - Civil Rights and Anti-Colonial Movements

This course examines the connections between two historical developments often treated separately: the US civil rights struggle and African anti-colonial movements. By placing these two movements in a transnational framework, the course explores the global challenge to the racialized world order of the 19th and early 20th century. How did civil rights struggle gain momentum in the aftermath of World War II? What was the longer history and role of "Black Nationalism" and Pan-Africanism in the transnational struggle? What were the connections between the civil rights movement and contemporary independence movements in Africa and Asia? One of the central goals of the course is to show how we can expand our understanding of US history by reaching beyond the interaction between the US government and other nation states to examine political and cultural change. (5 units)
- Also listed as HIST 153.

ETHN 150 – Urban Education and Multiculturalism

This course takes a critical multicultural approach to understanding urban education, encouraging a connection between theory and personal experience and observations. With a focus on schools in large urban contexts, this course centralizes the experiences of low-income, students of color. Race and class will be two critical lenses with which we will examine: (a) historical context of educational inequality, (b) current issues of educational inequity, and (c) a movement towards educational justice. Students should leave the course with a stronger understanding of the social and historical foundations of US education. (5 units)
- Also listed as EDUC 106.            

ETHN 151 – Educational Inequality, Racism and Resistance

This course critically examines the connection between educational inequality, racism and resistance from a multicultural perspective.   Encouraging students to view racism beyond isolated incidents by individuals, this course will expose racial inequality in schools as sustained by laws and formal institutions. In this course, students will be exposed to both theory and research that explore concepts including race and racism, racial microaggressions, stereotype threat, racial battle fatigue, internalized racism, and resistance. Students will examine the extent to which these forces impact multiple minority communities in K-16 contexts, as well as community efforts for social justice. (5 units)

ETHN 152 - Multi-Racial Identities

The course focuses on multi-racial identity constructs in African-American and Asian-American literature. Using journey as a metaphor, the course seeks to define "movement" and "place" in contexts where physical, spiritual, voluntary or forced journeys contribute to the transformative possibilities of race, class, gender, and identity. (5 units)

ETHN 153 - Minority Politics in the United States

Survey course with a focus on the historical and contemporary struggles of minority groups in the United States. The minority groups analyzed comparatively within a political and institutional context are African Americans, Latinos, Asian Americans, Native Americans, minority women, gays, and the physically disabled. Various issues include theories of race, ethnicity, gender, and class to understand how these variables serve as a basis for identification and political mobilization in American politics.  (5 units)
- Also listed as POLI 153.

ETHN 154 - Women of Color in the United States

This course will explore the historical and present day issues for women of color in the U.S. inclusive but not limited to key topics such as sexuality, family, work media and activism.  We will examine the impact of racism, sexism, and classism on African American, Asian American, Latina, Native and White American women in U.S.  Using an interdisciplinary approach, we will also investigate their shared experiences as well as their differences. (5 units)

ETHN 155 - Racism in the US

Multidiciplinary study of racism in the United States including its historical manifestations from the arrival of the Europeans in North America to contemporary times, its psychological dimensions (prejudice, stereotypes, discrimination), and its place within the U.S. political economy.  Course emphasis on African Americans, Asian Americans, Chicanos, and Native Americans. (5 units)
- Also listed as WGST 112.

ETHN 157 - Race, Gender, Class and the College Experience

How do we understand our experiences in college?  This course will explore student experiences in higher education by using lenses that focus on race, gender and class.  This course will use activities, self-reflection, lecture, and discussion to explore student identity, the history of higher education, college, access and retention, campus climate, and student development. (5 units)
- Also listed as WGST 114.

ETHN 160 – Documentary Making for Social Justice

In this course, students will learn how to write, film, direct, and edit their own 10 minute documentaries that are committed to social justice and change. In addition to producing our own films, we will explore how documentary filmmakers use film as a medium to heighten the consciousness of their audience, combat negative stereotypes, give voice to marginalized or underrepresented groups, and raise social awareness about issues affecting diverse communities. We will examine the intersection of gender, race, class, spirituality, and sexuality in film, noting how these dynamics function to enlighten our global community. Writers in this course will be moved from idea to script and, ultimately, film. (5 units)

ETHN 161 – Creating Diverse Going College Community

In this course, students will develop an understanding of diversity issues in college access, reflect on their own experience, utilize this knowledge to develop workshop curriculum to enhance college-going and then implement this curriculum in high school classrooms as a community based learning opportunity. Students will be introduced to background on colleges and universities in the U.S., including history, institutional types, and diverse student representation. Students will then explore the many factors that influence college access and experiences in college including class, race, gender, first generation college student status, financial aid and admissions processes. Students will also be asked to reflect on their own college application and selection process and their experience in college. Using this knowledge, students will engage in community based learning (CBL) in which they provide college-related tutoring, mentoring and workshops for high school students. (5 units)
- ELSJ Core Objective .

ETHN 162 – Diversity and the Media
This course focuses on the complex, changing, dynamic, and powerful relationships between dominant and underrepresented groups in society, the mass media, and broader social contexts. The course discusses media representations of social groups, contexts of media production, and media use among underrepresented groups. The concepts of hegemony, power, social construction, and intersectionality are vital in understanding these relationships, and vital for the course. The course connects to the field of cultural studies, in that it focuses on the everyday uses of symbolic forms.  Diversity and the Media aims to make students aware of, and sensitive to, some of the dynamics connected with media images, symbolic power, and the production of meaning in today's world. The course pushes students to formulate, question, and put into context their own versions of reality. (5 units)
- Also listed as COMM 121A.
ETHN 164 – Popular Music, Race, and American Culture

This course provides a social-cultural and historical understanding of American popular musics spanning the antebellum period to the 1980s.  Emphasis will be placed on the development and expansion of diverse blues-related forms of music, from the spirituals to hip hop.  In doing so, students will be introduced to a wide range of musical styles, such as classic blues, prison work songs, ragtime, swing, Tin Pan Alley, rhythm & blues, rock & roll, soul, funk, disco, and rap as well as key figures in American music. (5 units)
- Also listed as MUSC 134.

ETHN 170 – Immigrant Businesses in the United States

Immigrant businesses represent a growing sector within the U.S economy and contribute to social, political and cultural changes in the United States.  Examines the development and significance of immigrant business owners and the communities within which their businesses are located. (5 units)
- Also listed as SOCI 150.

ETHN 171 – Immigrant Communities

Explores the impact of immigration to the United States, particularly the effect of the immigration reform law of 1965 that resulted in large increases in immigration to the United States particularly from Latin America and Asia. This wave of immigrants and their U.S born children have significantly changed the fabric of American society. Examines case studies of immigrants and the second generation from Cuba, Mexico, Nicaragua, Vietnam and Haiti using a comparative sociological perspective.(5 units)
- Also listed as SOCI 180.


ETHN 178 – Race and World War II

World War II stands as one of the most explosive moments in US and global history in the twentieth century because of the myriad ways the conflict influenced the postwar world. The United States emerged from the war the premiere global superpower in terms of combined military, diplomatic, and financial supremacy but found itself under increased scrutiny due to its history and maintenance of structural or institutionalized racism. In the midst of military and ideological conflict against the Nazi regime in Germany, and addressing the claims of civil rights and anti-colonial activists, the United States became a composite site of the tensions that defined a democratic society struggling with ongoing racism. Through readings and discussions, this seminar explores these tensions, which were exacerbated by the rise of anti-racist perspectives in the anthropological and biological sciences just preceding the war. (5 units) - Also listed as HIST 178.

ETHN 185 – Senior Seminar in Racial and Ethnic in the United Staes

Selected topics in U.S. politics. (5 units)
- Also listed as POLI 195.

ETHN 194 – Peer Educator in Ethnic Studies

Peer Educators in Ethnic Studies work closely with a faculty member to help students in an Ethnic Studies course understand course material, think more deeply about course material, benefit from collaborative learning, and/or to help students enjoy learning.Enrollment is by permission of the instructor. (2 units)

ETHN 197 - Special Topics in Ethnic Studies

(1 - 5)

ETHN 198 - Internship

(2 - 5)

ETHN 199 - Directed Readings/Research or Internship

A Capstone senior project representing a student's specialization in ethnic studies. Prerequisite: written approval by the director of the Ethnic Studies Program prior to registration. (2 - 5)

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