Weekly Note

Published September 5, 2014 by djlwsu

I emailed class two notes, but am reproducing below to make sure everyone receives


  1. Good work today; loved all the participation. Keep pushing self to participate and to integrate specifics from readings into discussions


  1. I saw several people on laptops and using their i-pads in class today. A reminder, if you are using an i-pad or a laptop in class: 1) You need to speak to me and 2) you did need to sit in the first two rows.  


  1. As noted in class, I encourage you to go to zzusis to check email address and name listed in your profile. This is to guarantee that you get emails for our class but for all university-related emails


  1. Please go here for storify from Tuesday’s film – https://storify.com/djlwsu/race-power-of-an-illusion


  1. A note on blog (our address) – https://ces101fall2014.wordpress.com
    1. Engagement is key: I am posting articles that are written by brilliant thinkers and commentators with hopes that you connect themes to course materials and critically engage these works. Dismissing and simply denying arguments/analysis does not advance the discussion; focus on engaging what is said in the article, what arguments are being offered, and how that connects with class.
    2. Push self beyond reaction; this is not a debate or “Around the Horn”; our discussions should not simply be about imposing our own analysis but instead engaging and expanding, critically thinking about article and our own experiences, belief, and understanding.
    3. Ground your comments in the article, its specifics, and within class material.
    4. I try to comment in participation section and not with online writings; I hope people write and response to each other comments to make it an actual discussion. Leaving a comment to get the points and not returning to see how others responded to you certainly limits our conversations


  1. I encourage, if you are on Twitter, to follow class at ‪@CES101fall2014‪ – while I will post and email information so that it gets to you, this also helps in following along with class


  1. In terms of online writing
  • Push self in responding to questions – give depth and details.
  • Most questions will ask you to situate self within a larger question but that means making connections. I want to see how you can apply and relate course materials to your own discussion
  • Think about this way: I want to see how you can respond to question in light of course materials; an answer that reads like you would have said the same thing 2 weeks ago or a year ago is not the best approach.
  • Integrate readings and specifics from course within your answers
  • It should be 300-500 words
  1. Sorry we didn’t get to clicker today . . . Tuesday before our film


  1. Next week, we will watch film and discuss “what is racism next Thursday”


  1. Reading for next week – readings


9/9 – Racism

Readings: Roithmayr, #4-5 ; Ta-Nehisi Coates, “The Case for Reparations,” http://www.theatlantic.com/features/archive/2014/05/the-case-for-reparations/361631; Judith Ellis, “Understanding Racism,” http://www.huffingtonpost.com/judith-ellis/understanding-racism_b_3635514.html; Watch: “Can you be motivated by race even if you don’t know it?,” http://video.msnbc.msn.com/mhp/52473401#52473401;


9/11 – Racism

Readings: Ta-Nehisi Coates, “The Good, Racist People,” http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/07/opinion/coates-the-good-racist-people.html?_r=0; Yirssi Bergman, “The Effects of Living In My Skin,” http://www.huffingtonpost.com/yirssi-bergman/the-effects-of-living-in-_b_3679877.html; Richard Thompson Ford, “A primer on racism”; http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2009/09/a_primer_on_racism.htmlWatch: “Does Institutional Racism persist,” http://www.msnbc.com/hardball/watch/does-institutional-racism-persist-today-240281667797 

As there is still confusion (and I ask you to review the syllabus for clarity’s sake), I want to reiterate weekly/semester expectations


Weekly: Each week, you are expected to read (following course schedule) from books and the articles listed in the schedule. You are also expected to be in class ready to engage lecture, films, and discussion. You should complete reading before each class. You should bring your clicker to each and every class. Readings will prepare your for class discussions and lecture. The basis of your midterm is readings and in-class materials – films, lectures, and course discussion. Each week, READ and BE IN CLASS


Semester: At least 2 times (you can do more) during the semester you are required to complete an ONLINE WRITING assignment. The prompts will be on course blog. Each response should be 300-500 words (I would say closer to 500) and should respond to prompt using specifics from course materials, readings, and your own life’s experiences. They should reveal critical thinking and analysis. Throughout semester, you are required to do at least two of these


Optional: One of the ways to enhance your participation grade (the bulk comes from attendance and clicker points) is participating in ONLINE DISCUSSIONS. These are “participation” posts where you have the opportunity to discuss a particular article or film. This is but one way you can enhance your participation score in the class (as well as jeopardy standing): obviously talking in class, sending emails with thoughts and questions about course content, coming to office hours to talk about course content, sharing articles, videos, etc. that relate to course materials with me, etc.



I forgot in last email to include information from a few slides that we had to quickly go through, so that is below


Have a great weekend


Key Points about Race

  • Legal concept
  • Not a Matter of Choice
  • Race is not scientific – it is not a biological concept and it is not based in genetics
  • Race is not defined by color or other physical attributes
  • Race is different from culture
  • Race is different from ethnicity
  • Race is different from religious identity
  • Race is social construction
  • Based on/in essentialist categories
  • While constructed, race is real
  • Race is a relational concept
  • Race is simultaneously both a myth and a reality
  • Definitions of race are fluid and dynamic

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