Conceptualizing White Identity in the United States
Formerly listed as: BLST-10 | SOCI-31
Carleen R. Basler (Section 01)
(Offered as SOCI 331 and BLST 226 [US].) The debate over the virtues of multiculturalism and the promotion of diversity have, ironically, led an increasing number of scholars to question the meaning of “whiteness.” What does it mean to be “white”? Who gets to decide who is and who isn’t “white”? Clearly, “white” means more than is captured by complexion alone, but what is there besides complexion? Given the undeniable fact that cultural variations among those regarded as white are as large as the variations between whites and non-whites, it is not clear what exactly constitutes whiteness. To study whiteness is to analyze the collective memory and practices of “white people” and to scrutinize carefully those moments when white identity is used to mobilize passions. This course will attempt to unpack the myths and realities that have created and maintained “white identity.”
Limited to 25 students. Fall semester. Professor Basler.
If Overenrolled: Majors and seniors first priority
Offerings2014-15: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2009, Fall 2011