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GEOG 060 D1: RACE AND ETHNICITY IN THE US MW 4:05 – 5:20 PM, Lafayette L207

Spring 2011


Pablo Bose


209 Old Mill/656-5717


Office hours:

MW 2:00PM-3:00PM

Teaching Assistants:

Erica Weinberg


Elizabeth Wolfe 220 Old Mill

Office Hours:

Course Description Survey of the ways in which spatial processes and patterns reflect and shape racialized and ethnic identities in the U.S. Special attention will be paid to schemes of spatial restriction and to the roles of both mobility and place in racial and ethnic minorities' struggles for the power to define geographies of everyday life. Course will include text, readings, and films. Fulfills a “Race Relations and Ethnicity in the U.S.” requirement.

Overview Understanding the geography of race and ethnicity in the US is more than simply knowing why we can visit a Chinese restaurant in San Francisco, a Polish deli in Chicago, or an Italian café in New York City. While it is important to understand the locations of different social groups, it is about more than simply making a list of people and places. The geography of race and ethnicity in the US means engaging with important questions about the links between space, place and power. Examining such questions helps us to understand the shape of the world we live in today, both by looking at the past and at the present. How do we conceive of Los Angeles, San Antonio, or San Francisco as American cities without first understanding the historical conflicts between the US and Mexico? Can we understand why most Italian-Americans left Mulberry Street, NYC for the majority-white suburbs without understanding the development of highways and postwar housing? How have the legacies of colonialism, slavery, and segregation left their imprints on the urban and rural landscapes that surround us today? In this course, we will focus on the social construction of race and ethnicity and on the ways in which such ideologies have shaped spatial patterns in both the past and present. We will pay particular attention to issues including mobility, migration, urban form, spatial demographics, and borders. We will draw on various case studies and historical accounts to understand these identities, struggles and constructions. At the conclusion of this course, you should be able to better understand:

The nature, historical patterns, and demographics of American society in terms of race, ethnicity and spatial processes

Knowledge of the origins and systemic nature of prejudice, discrimination and oppression that has been directed toward people of diverse backgrounds and cultures, and how this has played out in geographical terms

An understanding of the current experiences and issues in the United States of different racial groups (including discrimination in all forms, life experiences of racial groups and white privilege), as they relate to space and place


Course Texts:

Rothenberg, Paula (ed.) 2010. Race, Class and Gender in the US (8 th Edition). NY: Worth. Additional readings will be made available in PDF format on the course Blackboard site (

Additional reading will be made available in PDF format on the course Blackboard site.

Evaluation Short assignments/quizzes Reviews (3 x 10% each) Mid-Term Final Exam

Evaluation Short assignments/quizzes Reviews (3 x 10% each) Mid-Term Final Exam
Evaluation Short assignments/quizzes Reviews (3 x 10% each) Mid-Term Final Exam
Evaluation Short assignments/quizzes Reviews (3 x 10% each) Mid-Term Final Exam





Short Assignments/Quizzes (5%) Students will be given several pop-quizzes and in-class assignments throughout the course of the semester. These will be worth approximately ½ point each and will not be announced ahead of time. They cannot be retaken or made up at another time.

Reviews (3 x 10% each) Students will be expected to complete 3 reviews of outside materials through the course of the semester. These reviews will include:

1 book review

1 film review

1 lecture review

Students will be asked to attend 1 lecture, read 1 book, and view 1 film, all of which must be outside of the course materials and readings. Each of these reviews is expected to be a minimum of 250 words long. Reviews are meant to be an opportunity to connect course topics and themes to outside materials, as a way of demonstrating the applicability of course concepts to the world around us. Each review must reference at least one course reading and must not be descriptive or a summary but rather a discussion. There are four opportunities to submit a review throughout the semester; only the first three submissions will be graded. Reviews must be handed in at the beginning of class and will not be accepted after 4:15 PM on the due date. ***Please note: submissions will NOT be accepted via email***

Mid-term Exam (25%) The mid-term exam will be based on lectures and readings covered up to the previous class and will be comprised of multiple-choice and short-answer questions. This exam is closed book and students will be given 75 minutes to write it. Students requiring alternate accommodation must provide documentation and make arrangements ahead of time for the exams.

Final Exam (40%) The final exam will be held during the scheduled exam period and will be based on lectures and readings from the entire semester and will be comprised of multiple-choice, short-answer and short essay questions. This exam is closed book. Students requiring alternate accommodation must provide documentation and make arrangements ahead of time for the exams.

Please note that there is no extra credit in GEO 060. Late assignments will not be accepted. All grades are based on the grade scale you see below. If you feel like you are falling behind or need help with the material, please see your TA or me as soon as possible.


Grades will be distributed according to the following scale:


97.0 – 100


77.0 – 79.9


94.0 – 96.9


74.0 – 76.9


90.0 – 93.9


70.0 – 73.9


87.0 – 89.9


60.0 – 69.9


84.0 – 86.9




80.0 – 83.9


1. There are no make-up exams or quizzes, or late submissions accepted. If you miss (or are going to miss) something important due to illness or other severe circumstance, contact me immediately (contact your Dean ʼ s office for validation of serious matters).

2. Your presence and participation are expected every class meeting and you are expected to have done the assigned reading and be ready to engage with the material. Anyone engaging in distracting behavior will be given one warning and then penalized for ongoing disruptions.

3. You are expected to do your own work. Cheating, plagiarizing, fabrication, collusion, and other forms of academic dishonesty are not tolerated at UVM. It is your responsibility to be familiar with the University ʼ s policy on academic honesty at

4. If you are an ACCESS student, we will make every effort to accommodate necessary arrangements. I need ACCESS letters by January 31, 2011 to make these accommodations.

5. Students have the right to practice the religion of their choice. Students who foresee an absence for religious reasons should submit in writing their documented religious holiday schedule for the semester by January 31, 2011. I will make every effort to accommodate appropriately.

6. Students participating in inter-collegiate athletics should plan their schedules with special care, recognizing the primary importance of all their academic responsibilities. Students are required to document in writing any conflicts between planned athletic events and class schedules to me by the end of the second week of classes. Individual athletes should meet with me to discuss the resolution of any missed classes and work.

7. Please review UVM ʼ s Student Rights and Responsibilities Policy document at







“RCG” = Race, Class Gender Reader (Rothenberg)

“OL” = Blackboard Online Materials

W, Jan 19





M, Jan 24

Social Construction of Race

Rothenberg, RCG I, 7-12

Omi and Winant, RCG I.1 13-22

Buck, RCG I.3, 32-38

Snyder, RCG VIII.1 571-577

W, Jan 26

Whiteness as Virtue

McIntosh, RCG II.8, 172-177

Rich, RCG I.3, 138-141

Roediger, OL 3-34

M, Jan 31

Geographies of Whiteness

Vanderbeck, OL 641-659

Brodkin, RCG I.4, 38-53

W, Feb 2

Complicating Ethnicity

Roberts, RCG III.1, 199-200

MPI, RCG III.2, 201-207

Alsultany, RCG III.3, 207-209

Navarro, RCG III.4, 209-213

Tafoya, RCG III.5, 214-217

M, Feb 7

“Model Minorities”

Prashad, OL 157-183

Shah, RCG III.6, 217-219

Thrupkaew, RCG III.7, 220-226

***Review Submission #1***

W, Feb 9

Inter-Ethnic Conflicts

Sethi, RCG II.4, 141-149

Jordan, RCG IV.7, 266-268

Rubin, RCG III.8, 226-234




M, Feb 14

Colonization and Colonialisms

Churchill, OL 1-18

US Commission on Human Rights, RCG VII.1,


Bird, RCG VI.1, 377-380

Elk v. Wilkins, RCG VII.15, 540-541

W, Feb 16

Forced Migration, Slavery, and the African Diaspora

An Act…, RCG VII.2, 504-509

The 3/5 Compromise, RCG VII.3, 509


An Act…, RCG VII.4, 510

Dred Scot v. Sanford, RCG VII.8, 522-525

M, Feb 21

Manifest Destiny and the US- Mexican War

Horsman, OL 1-6

Horsman, OL 229-248

W, Feb 23

Changing Places, Changing Faces

Portes and Rumbaut, OL 12-36

Portes and Rumbaut, OL 37-66


Portes, RCG V.18, 365-369

M, Feb 28

Refugees and Migrants

Pho, OL 10-18

Cowan, OL 131-152

W, Mar 2


***Mid-term Exam***

M, Mar 7



W, Mar 9







M, Mar 14

Racism and Structures of Power

US Commission on Civil Rights, RCG IV.1, 243-




Tatum, RCG II.1, 123-130

Bonilla-Silva, RCG II.2, 131-138

Feldman, RCG V.16, 357-360

Reuss, RCG V.17, 360-365

W, Mar 16

Racial Hierarchies in Law and Culture

Lincoln, RCG VII.9, 525-527

US Constitution, RCG VII.10, 527-528


Dubois, RCG VII.11, 528-536

Plessy v. Ferguson, RCG VII.16, 542-544

Zirin, RCG VI.13, 426-428

***Review Submission #2***

M, Mar 21

Confinement and the Other

Kochiyama, RCG VI.2, 381-388

Wu, RCG VI.3, 389-392

Fayad, RCG VI.5, 397-398

Rothschild, RCG IV.9, 271-272

Barry, RCG IV.10, 273-274

W, Mar 23

Prison and Place

Davis, RCG VIII.10, 643-647

Richmond and Johnson, OL 565-580

M, Mar 28

The Economic Geography of Difference

Sklar, RCG V.1, 307-316

Johnson, RCG V.2, 317-319


Thompson, RCG V.3, 319-321

Collins and Yeskel, RCG V.4, 321-322

Muhammad, RCG V.6, 325-326

Gates, RCG V.8, 328-330

Lui, RCG V.9, 330-334

Lui, RCG V.10, 334-342




W, Mar 30

Urban America

James, OL 375-378

Lipsitz, OL 10-23

M, Apr 4

Housing, Redlines and Subprime Mortgages

Roediger, OL 157-198

Dymski, OL 149-179


Richardson, OL 31-32

W, Apr 6

Race, Space and Food Practices

Eisenhauer, OL 125-133

Slocum, OL 520-533

M, Apr 11

Hurricane Katrina and the Racialization of “Natural” Disaster

Cutter, OL 1-5

Miles and Austin, OL 33-49

***Review Submission #3***

W, Apr 13



M, Apr 18

Katrina ʼ s Aftermath

Powell, OL 59-84

W, Apr 20

Environment and Race

Pulido, OL 12-60

Merchant, OL 1-13

M, Apr 25

Environmental Justice

Associated Press, RCG IV.21, 294-296

Agyeman, OL 69-76

W, Apr 27

Highway Robberies

Bullard, OL 15-31

Freilla, OL 75-98

Garcia and Rubin, OL 221-256



M, May 2

Media and the Representation of the “Other”

Perez, OL 222-248

Berger, RCG VIII.3, 584-586


Jhally, RCG VIII.5, 595-603

W, May 4


Portes, RCG V.18, 365-369

McKissak, RCG V.7, 326-327

Terkel, RCG VI.27, 479-490

***Review Submission #4***