Posted by: profe | May 2, 2019

The End

This Tuesday will be our last class meeting of the semester!

We’ll start class with a few songs to wrap up our playlist. If you know of a more recent song that speaks to the political sensibilities of our class and would like me to consider playing it, email me the title and performer.

After that we’ll have our final discussion. The reading is “My Dungeon Shook” by James Baldwin, the first essay in his amazing book The Fire Next Time (1963). It is provided to you as DCR 19.

If you haven’t been selected for your third go around as discussion participant, you know what’s coming. After the last group has discussed the material a bit, we’ll open up the discussion to the whole class.

We’ll spend the last 10 minutes of class filling out class evaluations.

I made an error in the due date for your final project on one of the handouts. Please note that the correct due date is Tuesday, May 7th (as listed on the syllabus, website, and assignment sheet). I would like you to upload your final project to WordPress no later than the start of class on that day. It will take me the better part of a day to make them all available online but I’ll let you know when that work is finished.

Posted by: profe | April 27, 2019


This week we will have our second to last class discussion and our second (and last) Midterm. You will find a study guide below.

On Tuesday we’ll start with a song and a discussion on the reading, a really interesting article on the multiracial organizing of the Third World Strike (provided to you as DCR 18). We’ll follow up our discussion with a short lecture. We’ll also talk a bit about the Midterm.

On Thursday we’ll take the in-class Midterm. To make your studying easier, here’s a study guide for you:

Potential Identification Questions
I will select five of the following ten items. You will be asked to describe them and discuss their significance to our class.
• Young Lords
• Raymond Yellow Feather
• National Congress of American Indians
• Leonard Peltier
• Third World Women’s Alliance
• I Wor Kuen
• Third World Liberation Front
• Asian American Political Alliance
• Indians of All Tribes

Potential Short Answer Questions
I will choose two of the following four short answer prompts.

1. Describe the four “offensives” of the Young Lords Party. What did Lords believe they achieved through these tactics?

2. Explain how the issue of reproductive rights could serve as an organizing issue for feminists of color but also source of tension for cultural nationalist organizations.

3. Explain what Stephen Ward meant when he says that “TWWA’s feminism was not simply a critique of Black Power politics but, rather, a form of it.” (DCR 16) Is this a true and useful way to make sense of feminism within other movements?

4. Discuss at least three ways the US war in Vietnam shaped race movements of the late 60s? Use specific examples from at least two movements.

Longer Essay Question
• You should be prepared to discuss Native American movements and Asian American movements and some ways we can put them in comparison with the Black Freedom Struggle.

• You should be prepared to discuss the rise of third wave feminism in the 60s and 70s.

Posted by: profe | April 18, 2019


I’m away from campus on Thursday, April 25, delivering a keynote address at a local conference on Latinx Studies. That means a short week for us in terms of class. We still have work to do.

On Tuesday we will have a collaborative discussion on the readings (chapters 6-9 in Serve the People). We’ll also have a short lecture on race and the Vietnam War.

We will not have class on Thursday. I do ask you watch the historic movie The Fall of the I-Hotel (1983). The film is available on Sakai.

The Fall of the I-Hotel is a special documentary film that tells the story of the closing of a residential hotel that was home to many elderly Filipino men in the 1970s. The battle to fight their eviction was a multiracial movement in progressive San Francisco, as you’ll see. It was also the definitive “movement” of the Asian American movement in San Francisco.

The Fall of the I-Hotel is also a political work of art. Filmed and produced by a collective of film artists who actually used community space in the I-Hotel, it is a product of a broader effort to use film to document and elevate the people of the Asian American communities in the city. In this way it is both a documentary and a historical document in itself.

The Fall of the I-Hotel gives us an opportunity to think about how the complex issues of the (capitalist) market——in this case the real estate market——creates unity of vision among city residents and officials yet still inhibits successful results. In many ways, it is a snapshot of some of the issues we today call gentrification.

You should also continue working on your semester project. The handouts passed out in class on Thursday, April 18 are now posted on the “Assignments” page (just below the description of the “Teaching the Freedom Struggle” assignment). I also posted a link to one previous assignment that is perfectly formatted.

Posted by: profe | April 11, 2019


This week we will begin our final class transition as our class story investigates the movements associated with Asian Americans in the 60s and 70s.

On Tuesday we will begin class with our usual discussion of the readings, chapters 1-5 in our last course book Serve the People: Making Asian America in the Long Sixties, by Karen L. Ishizuka. April 16: Asian American Activists. As always, prepare your discussion questions and prompts with a focus on things that 1) are answerable by the text; 2) analyze the major themes, arguments, and topics; and 3) explore comparative understandings.

We’ll follow our discussion with a short lecture and an overview on part 2 of our semester project. I’ll also return your CE 2 assignments.

On Thursday we’ll highlight multiracial movements as we discuss the San Francisco State Strike, led by students calling themselves the Third World Liberation Front. To prepare for that short lecture and discussion I ask that you watch the documentary Agents of Change, which is available on Sakai.

My apologies for having to cancel class last time. Thank you again for your understanding and for your well wishes. My daughter is doing much better.

Posted by: profe | April 6, 2019

Week 11

Your Critical Evaluation Exercise should be turned in via our Sakai “Drop Box” by Sunday morning (April 7) at 10:00AM.

On Tuesday we’ll start class with our weekly discussion on the readings. The reading is Part IV of the book Prison Writings: My Life is My Sun Dance, by Leonard Peltier (provided to you as DCR 15). You should learn who Leonard Peltier is before you do the reading. As usual, come prepared with your discussion questions and prompts.

We’ll follow the lecture with a short lecture on AIM and the FBI. To give you some context on that history, I ask that you read “Burglars Who Took on F.B.I.,” and article from the NY Times. There is also a short video related to the article that you should watch.

On Thursday we’ll have a special class where we discuss two readings. The first is an article by Stephen Ward titled “The Third World Women’s Alliance” (DCR 16). The other is a sample of readings from This Bridge Called My Back: Writings By Radical Women of Color (DCR 17), a rather historic collection of essays. We’ll also review the second part of our semester teaching project.

Posted by: profe | March 28, 2019


This week we begin our discussions of movements involving Native Americans, primarily those under the umbrella of “Red Power.”

We’ll begin that discussion on Tuesday when we gather for our weekly seminar on the readings. This week I ask you to read chapter 6 from the book Blood Struggle (provided to you as DCR 12) and chapters 6 & 7 from the book Like a Hurricane (provided to you as DCR 13). As always, prepare your list of discussion prompts/questions related to these readings. We’ll follow-up our discussion with a short lecture.

We will not have class on Thursday but I do have some work for you to do in my absence. I ask that you watch two documentaries: “Wounded Knee” (which is episode 5 of the longer PBS series We Shall Remain, 2009) and Alcatraz Is Not An Island (2001). Both are made available to you via Video47 on Sakai.

You also have to complete and turn in our next (and last) Critical Evaluation Exercise. The 2-3 page write-up should be based on your analysis of the “The Alcatraz Proclamation” document, provided to you as DCR 14. Because I am not in town and won’t begin grading these for a few days, you have until Sunday, April 7 to turn them in via our “Drop Box” on Sakai. It must be timestamped no later than 10:00AM (that’s in the morning folks!).

Be well until next time…

Posted by: profe | March 14, 2019


I hope you all have a safe and enjoyable spring break.

We hit a busy two weeks when we get back from the break, but it buys us some relief later in the semester.

On Tuesday we will have our regular in-class discussion on the assigned readings: chapters 7-8 in Racism on Trial; and article titled “Revolutionary Sisters” (DCR10); and some selections from the Young Lords organization (DCR 11). We’ll follow-up our seminar with a lecture on Latinx radicalism in the era.

On Thursday we’ll wrap up some loose ends relating to Latinx movements of the era. We’ll also turn in our Question and Sources assignment. Details about the assignment are posted on the “Assignments” page.

See you after the break!


Posted by: profe | March 7, 2019

WEEK 08: Half way there!

We’re just about at the halfway point of our semester together.  I want to thank you all for your effort and energy.  I really love our evolving class voice and I’m looking forward to bearing witness to how it continues to take shape in the weeks ahead.

On Tuesday we’ll have our weekly seminar discussion on the book we’re reading, Racism on Trial.  This week we read chapters 3-6.  Come prepared with your discussion questions and prompts.  I’ll choose a group at random to lead discussion.

We’ll follow our discussion with a short workshop on how to do research for our semester project.

On Thursday we will have our in-class Midterm 1 exam.  The exam will have three parts.  It’s designed to assess your knowledge of the first half of our semester of learning.

  • Part 1 is a section on “Identifications.”  You will be given lists of people, organizations, and events from which you must select a specified number to write a short description identifying the term and describing their significance for our class.  The lists will be derived from readings, lectures, and films.  None should be a surprise.
  • Part 2 is a section on “Readings.”  You will be given a list of questions from which you must select a specified number to provide a short answer (not an essay but more than a paragraph).  These questions will relate to our course readings.
  • Part 3, the final section, is an essay in response to one of a small selection of prompts.

The entire exam is designed to be completed in 30-40 minutes.  Please bring a pen with which to write.  I will provide you a blue book for your answers.

Take care until next time!

Posted by: profe | February 28, 2019


This week we make the next transition in our class, as we begin learning about Mexican/Mexican-American history (what is often called “Chicano” in the context of the times) and the movements shaping their experiences in the United States.

On Tuesday we will discuss the United Farm Workers movement led by Cesar Chavez. To frame our discussion you should complete two readings and watch one documentary before class. The readings are chapters 7-9 from the book America’s Social Arsonist by Gabriel Thompson (provided to you as DCR 8) and the introduction and chapters 1-2 in our next course book, Racism on Trial: The Chicano Fight for Justice by Ian F. Haney López.

The movie is called “Delano Manongs” and it is accessible through Kanopy. Kanopy is a streaming service which the Claremont Colleges subscribe to. You can claim your account by clicking on “Kanopy” on the library website. Access might take a few hours but it should be fine after that.

The film tells the story of the Filipino farmers who were part of the early history of the UFW movement.

On Thursday we will learn about the Chicano student walkouts of 1968. We will watch a documentary in class, and then discuss a bit about it after. You have one reading for that discussion, a list of the demands of the walkout students, reprinted from the LA Times. It is provided to you as DCR 9.

Posted by: profe | February 22, 2019


This week we will focus our discussion on the “Black Power” phase of the Black Freedom Struggle, as we turn our discussion to the Malcolm x and the Nation of Islam, as well as the Black Panther Party for Self Defense.

For Tuesday’s class you should read the remainder of the The Autobiography of Malcolm X. We’ll continue with our regular discussion format, selecting 6-7 participants at random. Remember you ALL should prepare your list of discussion prompts and bring them to class. The assignment asks that they are turned in during class, not after.

We’ll follow-up our formal discussion on the book with a short lecture on the Black Panther Party and a discussion of last week’s movie, “Freedom on My Mind.”

On Thursday we’ll have a lecture on “Black Power” and an informal discussion on a documentary called “The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution.” You should watch the film (via Sakai) in advance of class.

Be well until then!

Bobby Seale (at microphone) and other Black Panthers,  at a press conference in Oakland, CA, after the shooting of one of their members (17-year old Bobby Hutton) by police officers in 1968.


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