ES 221 - African American Studies: Down from the Pyramids, Up from Slavery
The focus of this course is on African, Afro-European, Afro-Native American, Caribbean, South and North American Maroon societies. In this course we examine various cultural constructs through which Africans in America understand and influence the world. The chronology of this course encompasses Dynastic Egypt, pre-European Conquest Africa, pre-Columbian America, to Post Reconstruction America 1877. ES 221 and 223 examine culture, identity, gender and women's roles, economics, and African and Native American responses to systematic oppression towards goals of individual and group liberation.
Upon successful completion of this course, the student should be able to:
1. Apply analytical skills to social phenomena in order to understand human behavior: Use critical thinking skills to understand the effects of historical examples of inequality around race, class, and gender and its' impact on society.
2. Apply knowledge and experience to foster personal growth and better appreciate the diverse social world in which we live: Develop a deeper understanding of one's own culture as well as learning about the cultures of others.
3. Understand the role of individuals and institutions within the context of society: Although this course focuses on Africans, Afro-Europeans, Afro-Native Americans, Caribbean, South and North American Maroon societies, this ethnic studies course uses multiple methods, and techniques to allow all students to constantly find themselves and their stories within the context of the society in which we are exploring. By inserting themselves into the narrative, they can greater understand and critically analyze the relationship between the individual and societal institutions.
4. Assess different theories and concepts, and understand the distinctions between empirical and other methods of inquiry: Ethnic Studies is an interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary field of study. This Ethnic Studies course borrows from multiple fields, using a wide range of theoretical foundations and methods of inquiry, on which to build the student's understanding of the material covered in this course.
5. Utilize appropriate information literacy skills in written and oral communication: The webpage of Ethnic Studies appears on all course syllabi. Students are encouraged to use the webpage as a foundation to explore the complexities of the discipline. Students are also assigned class exercises that require them to explore web-based materials. Lastly, students are offered extra credit for exploring all forms of media resources for material related to this course.
6. Understand the diversity of human experience and thought, individually and collectively: This Ethnic Studies course engages in the critical analysis of why human groups (all people of all sub-groups within society) act the way that they do, both as individuals and within the context of social groups and institutions.
7. Apply knowledge and skills to contemporary problems and issues: Although the primary focus of this course is within a historical context, the course still engages in a free flowing comparison between historical and contemporary society. Context in understanding contemporary social phenomenon does not exist without a historical analysis.
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