Ethnic Studies

  • Course Overview

    Ethnic Studies operates from the consideration that race and racism, have been, and continue to be profoundly powerful social and cultural forces in American society. The major purpose of this course is to educate students to be politically, socially, and economically conscious about their personal connections to local and national history. Ethnic Studies focusses on themes of social justice, social responsibility, and social change. By studying the histories of race, ethnicity, nationality, sexuality, and culture, students will cultivate respect and empathy for individuals and solidarity with groups of people locally, nationally, and globally so as to foster active social engagement and community building. Students will investigate and analyze the historical factors of power and privilege and the subsequent impact on historically disadvantaged groups’ ability to navigate and mitigate internal and external structures that influence their human experience. Particular focus will be given to the contributions, and struggles of different racial and ethnic groups for liberty, equality, and justice in the United States. This course will also include an Identity section where students will consider concepts related to their own personal, group, and/or national identity. This course is intended to help build inter-ethnic understanding and socio-cultural bridges in an increasingly more multicultural and multiethnic nation, which is imperative to creating a just society.  {Adapted from LAUSD & SMUSD}

    Textbooks Utilized:

    A Different Mirror (Takaki, Ronald)
    Lies My Teacher Told Me (Loewen, James)
    A Peoples History of the United States (Zinn, Howard)

    Other Resources:

    Teaching Tolerance (online)
    RACE: The Power of Illusion (video series)
    Facing History (online)
    PBS Learning Media (online)

    Major Projects:

    Research Paper on racial disparities
    Visual Portfolio of various ethnic group contributions in LA or California
    PBL Based Activity of economic intersectionality and post-secondary college and career plans
    Others TBA

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