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

Departments of African American Studies and Ethnic Studies

Race and the Law Summer Minor

The summer minor in Race and the Law is created to develop students’ understanding of the fundamental interconnections between race and the law within and beyond the U.S.  Historically, law has been instrumental in codifying racial difference and establishing racial hierarchies. Contemporary conflicts over migration, citizenship, indigenous claims to land, and environmental justice are part of a broader history that demands attention to the role of the law in creating and contesting social power.  Course offerings will address these issues to demonstrate why law is an essential component of racialization, and conversely, why it is impossible to understand U.S. legal history without addressing race.

 

 

For UC Berkeley Students

Race and the Law Summer Minor

The minor consists of two required core courses and three elective courses taught in two consecutive summer sessions.  Students declaring a minor must do so in writing to racelawminor@berkeley.edu.  The minor can be completed in one summer or more.

 

For non-UC Berkeley Students

Race and the Law Certificate

The certificate consists of two required core courses and three elective courses taught in two consecutive summer sessions. The certificate can be completed in one summer or more.

 

 

Required Core Courses

 

ES 144AC: Racism and the U.S. Law: Historical Treatment of Peoples of Color (4 Units)

Intensive historical-legal survey of racism in the United States, exploring the legal antecedents of the country's contemporary stratified society, and emphasizing the role of law as a social policy instrument. Readings and lectures will investigate the prevailing legal currency of racism in the United States through an examination of the country's formative legal documents and the consequent effects of a myriad of judicial decisions on peoples of color.

 

AAS 136L:   Criminal Justice and Surveillance in America (3 units)

What is the relationship between the criminal justice system and surveillance in America? What role does power play in this relationship?  How does this complicated relationship inform, reproduce, and engender understandings about race, class and sexuality? How has this relationship changed over time?  How has technological change impacted this relationship?  In this course, we will examine the relationship between the criminal justice system and the surveillance of vulnerable communities. We will examine social and historical trends, but our main focus will be on the evolution of this relationship since the mid-20th century, especially how this relationship developed in distressed urban neighborhoods in the post-Civil Rights era.

 

Elective Courses (summer 2018)

 

AFRICAM 125AC: The History of the Modern Civil Rights Movement

The objective of this course is to examine the modern Civil Rights Movement. As traditionally understood, this period began with the May 17, 1954, "Brown vs. Board of Education” Supreme Court decision and ended with the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. This course will expand this time frame and seek to place this movement in the context of global developments and the broad sweep of United States History. Assigned readings consist of historical and autobiographical texts. Lectures will contextualize the readings by placing the material and its significance within the overall history and culture of Americans. Visual media will augment the lectures.

 

AFRICAM 139L: The Black Panther Party and American Popular Culture

This course will explore the rise and fall of the Oakland, California based Black Panther Party for Self Defense (BPP), and the role of the organization in rearticulating the urban narrative of resistance to power in America in the 1960s and 1970s. The course will consider the role of the law in the construction of BPP's resistance to power. It will also explore the public presence of the BPP, and the role of media and popular culture in disseminating images and aesthetics of the BPP. Through this process, students will gain an understanding of the significance of symbols and ideas in the representations of African Americans, in the context of movements for social change in the US.

 

ETHSTD 180L: Racial Citizenship and US Immigration

What do we mean when we say: “the United States is a ‘melting pot’ or a land of ‘immigrants’? What are the legal and social implications of such statements? Do these popular statements still hold true today? If so, what is the current image, picture, and state of US immigration today? Why does immigration and immigrants continue to play such an important role in understanding the trajectory of the country in general? One answer gives the impression that the origins of the United States lies in a history of migration with people from all over the world making it what it is today. Yet such popular understandings are fraught with contesting narratives and histories that suggest otherwise. This course explores, through an Ethnic Studies perspective, contemporary themes in US immigration that will help us chart/map several historical trajectories that contest the dominant narratives of US immigration as a ‘melting pot’ or a “land of immigrants." It examines the social/political/cultural/juridical landscapes and regimes in which (im)migration is shaped and understood in everyday life and more importantly how they may open opportunities for immediate and long term political/social action.

 

ETHSTD 180L: Civil Rights and Civil Liberties: Race in the Law

This course will critically examine the complex relationship between the balance of rights as enshrined in civil liberties and civil rights, through a prism of race, rights and citizenship. We will examine how social conditions and legal outcomes balance the interests of individuals versus group rights. For example what are the civil rights versus the civil liberties, and the group versus the individual rights in regards to first amendment speech rights versus second amendment rights? Where does the right to privacy lie in this calculus? We will closely review case precedent in immigration, national security, voting rights, language access and affirmative action and their associated social contexts and legal conflicts around racial profiling, education access and citizenship rights. We will consider how legal processes are interrelated with discourses and practices about race and rights in the U.S. In particular, we will consider the genealogy of U.S. legal doctrine (in court precedent as well as enacted law) and contemporary popular ideology or “common sense” on race, class, gender and culture.

 

 

How to Enroll

 

FOR UC BERKELEY STUDENTS

Race and the Law Minor

1 - Choose your courses and enroll for summer 2018 through CalCentral. Enrollment opens February 1, 2018.

2 - In Session A, fill out the Intent to Minor form.

◦ Email the form to racelawminor@berkeley.edu, or bring the form to an advisor in the Department of African American Studies or Department of Ethnic Studies.

3 - At the start of Session D, fill out the Completion of L&S Minor form
◦ Email the form to racelawminor@berkeley.edu, or bring the form to an advisor in the Department of African American Studies or Department of Ethnic Studies.

4 - You will receive a Completion of Minor document signed by the chairs of the Department of African American Studies and Department of Ethnic Studies.

 

FOR NON-UC BERKELEY STUDENTS

Race and the Law Certificate

1 - Choose your courses and enroll for summer 2018. Enrollment opens Feb 15, 2018.

2 - At the start of Session D, fill out the Completion of Certificate form. 
◦ Email the form to racelawminor@berkeley.edu, or bring the form to an advisor in the Department of African American Studies or Department of Ethnic Studies.

3 - You will receive a Certificate of Completion signed by the chairs of the Department of African American Studies and Department of Ethnic Studies.

 

 

 

Financial Aid

 

UC Berkeley students who enroll in the Race and the Law in Summer Sessions 2018 and complete it by the end of summer 2018 or by the end of summer 2019 are eligible for a $2,000 scholarship.


To be awarded the scholarship you must:

- Be currently enrolled as a UC Berkeley student.

- Complete the academic requirements for the minor by the end of Summer Sessions 2018 or Summer Sessions 2019.

- Receive a grade of "C" or higher in all courses for the minor and complete all courses before graduation.

- Print out or complete the online Completion of L&S Minor form and submit it to the Department of African American Studies or Department of Ethnic Studies within two weeks of the start of your final course.

- This will trigger the process of awarding your scholarship. You will receive an acknowledgment that you have successfully completed the Minor. Your $2,000 scholarship will be posted as "Scholarship" to your student account by December of that year. Please note that certificate candidates and students not enrolled at UC Berkeley are not eligible for the scholarship.

 

Important Dates

ENROLLMENT OPENS
February 01:   UC Berkeley Students and All UC Students
February 15:  Visitors and International Students

CLASSES BEGIN
May 21:  Session A
July 02:  Session D

SUMMER SESSION ENDS
August 10