Department of Ethnic Studies - College of Letters and Science - University of California, Berkeley

Courses / Undergraduate

Fall 2018

ETHSTD 190AC 001 | CCN: 30854

Advanced Seminar in Ethnic Studies - "Inside and Beyond Walls: Migra, Masses and the Carceral State"

Victoria Robinson,

W 3:00 pm - 5:59 pm Barrows 174

4 Units


The course has three main avenues of exploration. First, we seek to understand the political historical structural and social roots of racialized mass incarceration and racialized mass detention and deportation. Second, we examine the work of practitioners, scholars and activists developing critical analyses and abolitionist strategies for social change through their analytical connections between seemingly disconnected forms of state violence. Lastly, whilst the effects of mass incarceration can be quantified to some extent, and those numbers are often the bi-line for many studies, the damages wrought by these realities are only now being excavated. In the race to incarcerate and detain/deport what does it mean to live in a community where three out of every ten boys growing up will spend time in prison, what does it do to the fabric of a family to have parents suspended in deportation hearings, and what does it mean to a community’s political influence when one quarter of black men in some states cannot vote because of a felony conviction? We seek to integrate the work of both the student’s own story and those directly affected by mass incarceration, detention and deportation. In so doing we will also analyze the organizing of Bay Area and state community organizations such as the Transgender and Intersex Justice Project (TGIJP); All of Us Or None; The UC Black Workers Organizing Project; 67 Suenos; Oakland UNITE and Critical Resistance. Course Objective To understand the strategies and struggles against inequality and powerlessness brought by state violence. How are the social immobilizations of low income and communities of color challenged by movements seeking to ensure communities true security through basic necessities such as food, shelter and freedom? This course meets the American Cultures (AC) requirement through its integration of research and analysis of the comparative racial dimensions of incarceration and immigration criminalization.