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Domino R. Perez, Director BUR 552, Mailcode F9200, Austin, TX 78712 • (512) 471-4557

Course Descriptions

MAS 307 • Intro To Mexican Amer Cul Stds

36370 • Alvarez, C.J.
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm MEZ 2.124
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See syllabus.

MAS 308 • Intro To Mex Amer Policy Stds

36375 • Rivera, Michael
Meets T 500pm-800pm PAR 204
show description

See syllabus.

MAS 314 • Mexican American Lit And Cul

36380 • Hinojosa-Smith, Rolando
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm GAR 1.134
(also listed as E 314V)
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Instructor:  Hinajosa-Smith, R

Unique #:  35130

Semester:  Fall 2014

Cross-lists:  MAS 314

Prerequisites: E 603A, RHE 306, 306Q, or T C 603A.

Description: The course will cover a wide-spectrum of Mexican-Society: We will begin with Mexican-American urbanites living in one of this country’s largest cities.  This text will be followed by a Mexican family who crosses illegally into the United States to work and to search for the so-called American Dream.  The third text centers on Mexican American migrant workers who, in contrast to the characters in the preceding novel, are native born Americans.  The next text is a book of poetry by a Mexican American writer who has also won high recognition as a writer of Children’s Literature.  In contrast to the novels mentioned, the students will now read of middle class Mexican American citizens who have lived in the area since the middle of the eighteenth century.  The final novel is the second part of the second text; the family, after naturalization, and are now American citizens.  The different strata of this section of American society provide a wide scope of Mexican American life.

The class will not be a replica of many lecture classes: in this instance, the professor will read from prepared lectures and the students will be given copies of them and thus 1) read the material, and 2) hear it as the professor reads the lecture.  This, along with the student’s reading assignments, is designed for the students to come prepared with written questions or statements, which will be turned in to the professor prior the beginning of the class.  Questions written in class will not be accepted.

There will be no less than six essays; the student should read carefully; short quizzes will form part of the daily assignment.  The book of poetry will entail oral readings and a declamation of a poem (from a list of ten ) that the students will choose to recite during the semester.

Texts: The House on Mango Street, Sandra Cisneros

The Circuit, Francisco Jimenez

And the Earth Did Not Devour Him, Tomas Rivera

Ask a Policeman, Rolando Hinojosa

Breaking Through, Francisco Jimenez

Grading: The Essays: 80%; short quizzes: 15%; and the poetry declamation: 5%

MAS 316 • History Of Mexican Amers In US

36390 • Zamora, Emilio
Meets TTH 930am-1100am BUR 208
(also listed as HIS 314K)
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The reading and lecture course examines the historical development of the Mexican community in the United States since 1848, with an emphasis on the period between 1900 and the present.  The primary purpose of the course is to address time and place specific variations in the incorporation of the Mexican community as a national minority and bottom segment of the U.S. working class.  One of my central concerns is to explain two inter-related historical trends in this incorporation, steady upward mobility and unrelenting social marginalization.  I emphasize work experiences, race thinking, social relations, trans-border relations, social causes and larger themes in U.S. history such as wars, sectional differences, industrialization, reform, labor and civil rights struggles, and the development of a modern urbanized society. Also, I incorporate relevant aspects of the history of Latinos, African Americans, and Mexico.



Manuel G. Gonzales, Mexicanos, A History of Mexicans in the US (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1999).

Angela Valenzuela, “The Drought of Understanding and the Hummingbird Spirit,” Unpublished essay in my possession.

Emilio Zamora, Claiming Rights and Righting Wrongs in Texas, Mexican Workers and Job Politics during WWII (College Station: Texas A&M University Press, 2009).

Emilio Zamora, “Guide for Writing Family History Research Paper.



Mid-term examination (25%),

Final examination (25%),

Research paper (30%),

Two chapter reports (10%)

Film report (10%).

MAS 319 • Ethncty & Gender: La Chicana

36405 • Minich, Julie A.
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am PAR 206
(also listed as AMS 315, SOC 308D, WGS 301)
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The purpose of this course is to examine the various experiences, perspectives, and expressions of Chicanas in the United States. This involves examining the meaning and history of the term “Chicana” as it was applied to and incorporated by Mexican American women during the Chicano Movement in areas of the Southwest U.S., such as Texas and California. We will also explore what it means to be Chicana in the United States today. The course will begin with a historical overview of Mexican American women's experiences in the U.S., including the emergence of Chicana feminism. We will discuss central concepts of Chicana feminism and attempt to understand how those concepts link to everyday lived experiences. Specifically, the relationship between gender, race/ethnicity, and class will be key as we discuss issues that have been significant in the experiences and self-identification of Chicanas, such as: family, gender, sexuality, religion/spirituality, education, language, labor, and political engagement. We will engage in interdisciplinary analysis not only concerning cultural traditions, values, belief systems, and symbols but also concerning the expressive culture of Chicanas, including folk and religious practices, literature and poetry, the visual arts, and music. Finally, we will examine media representations of Chicanas through critical analyses of film and television portrayals.

MAS 374 • Latina Feminisms And Media

36427 • Beltrán, Mary
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm CMA 3.120
(also listed as WGS 324)
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Cross-listed with MAS and WGS 324

This upper-division undergraduate course surveys Chicana and Latina feminist scholarship, activism, and creative expression, with an emphasis on media production.  We will explore therise and development of Latina feminisms and activism in relation to the Chicana/o, Puerto Rican, and U.S. women’s movements and in relation to historical and social contexts for women and girls of Mexican American and other U.S. Latina heritage.  The last half of the course will survey scholarship on Latina participation and representation in mediated popular culture and strategies of resistance enacted through Latina film and media production.  Carries both the Cultural Diversity and Writing flag.

MAS 374 • Society Of Modern Mexico

36429 • Ward, Peter
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm BUR 130
(also listed as GRG 356T, LAS 325, SOC 335, URB 354)
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This course seeks to understand Mexico through three lenses. First to introduce students to modern Mexico - its geography, economy, polity and society, and to examine in detail the nature and the forces of change that have impacted so dramatically upon the country during the past two decades. Second, we will examine Mexico-US bi-lateral relations both historically as well as in the contemporary sphere. Third, our lens will focus attention upon “Mexico Here”, and will analyze the dramatic Hispanic “rise” in the USA since 1990, with a special emphasis upon the ways in which the minority majority of Mexicans and Mexican Americans are shaping our own society, economy and polity of central Texas.

The first half of the course will offer an overview of the modern Mexico – its economic and political opening, challenges of overcoming poverty, and more recently the instability born of the drug cartels. Here too we will examine the key bilateral issues between the two countries: immigration reform; insecurity; and economic integration.  The second half of the course is designed to analyze the demographic and socio-cultural changes and policy challenges that Mexican-origin populations confront today in here Central Texas: in education, health care, citizenship aspirations, access to housing, justice and human rights and wellbeing. The aim is to gain a more sensitive and nuanced awareness of how Mexican populations specifically, and Hispanic populations more generally, are transforming the cultural and political landscape of Texas and the US, in order to offer a broad-brush introduction that will allow us consider the public policy dilemmas and imperatives that we have to confront today.

The course will comprise a substantial writing component including three essays. In class participation is expected, and in addition an important element of the class assessment will comprise two group projects about how Mexicans and Mexican-American identities are shaping politics, society & culture (broadly defined) here in Central Texas. There will be one midterm exam, but no final.


Essays and Papers 40%

Participation 25%

Mid-term 15%

Group Projects 20%


MAS 374 • US Immigration

36450 • Rodríguez, Néstor P.
Meets MWF 1100am-1200pm CLA 1.106
(also listed as SOC 321K)
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II.  Course Aims and Objectives

Immigration patterns have significantly affected the development of U.S. society since its inception.  In the 1990s, the United States experienced a record number of new immigrants, and the present decade is maintaining a high volume of immigration, perhaps heading to another record.  This course uses a sociological perspective to address various impacts of immigration in U.S. society.


This course is designed to help students develop an awareness of the significance of immigration in U.S. society.  In the course, students learn to use sociological approaches to better understand the nature of immigration in U.S. society, including an understanding of how immigration affects large (macro) and small (micro) social units.

 Specific Learning Objectives

Gain background information on the development of immigration patterns in U.S. society and discuss the social forces that affect these patterns from the perspective of historical and recent immigration trends.

Review and discuss different social perceptions and attitudes about immigration trends in U.S. society.

Review and analyze government statistical reports concerning annual immigration conditions and characteristics.

Develop an awareness of the significance of immigration for the development of U.S. society.

Review major laws affecting immigration patterns in U.S. society

Gain an ability to analyze current immigration dynamics from a sociological perspective

Format and Procedures

The course is designed with the expectation that it will follow an intertwined format of lectures and class discussions.  A key expectation is that students will come to class prepared to discuss thematic issues covered in the class, or at least come to class with a curious and critical predisposition to become intellectually engaged in the class. All students are expect to contribute to class discussion, with a high regard for an open academic dialogue, which values respect for the ideas, opinions, and views of others. Class attendance is expected and highly encouraged.

During the course students will be asked to give formal and informal anonymous feedback regarding the teaching techniques and progress of the course.  The purpose of the student feedback is to help create an effective learning experience.


My assumptions about the nature of immigration in U.S. society is that it a) follows an historical course, b) flows from the interaction between human agency and social structures, c) takes normal paths of social division and degrees of accommodation and social incorporation, d) is partly affected by social constructions regarding different national-origin groups, and e) has its most profound significance within the dynamics of social reproduction.

Course Requirements

1. Class attendance and participation policy

To get the most out of this class you should attend all classes and arrive on time.  Also, you should review previous lecture notes and bring questions to class about points you did not clearly understand—including points from the assigned readings.  Please be attentive in class (turn off phones or set to vibration). You are greatly encouraged to participate in class discussion, and please do so in a manner that respects the rights of others to also participate.  If you have a problem hearing the lectures and discussion, or viewing class presentations, please let me know immediately. Class participation is taken into consideration (10%) for the final grade.


a) Required books/readings:

Portes, Alejandro, and Ruben Rumbaut.  2006.  Immigrant America:  A Portrait.  Berkeley, CA:  University of California Press. (PR)

Min, Pyong Gap.  2006.  Asian Americans:  Contemporary Trends. Thousand Oaks, CA: Pine Forge Press. (M)

 On-line articles (these are free on-line articles accessible through the UT library or other public sources)

 b) Websites to review: let’s make sure that these are the websites that are reviewed for each topic section.

Census Bureau:

Population Reference Bureau:

Office of Immigration Statistics:

Migration Policy Institute:

Pew Hispanic Center:

UT Austin Center for Mexican American Studies:

UT Austin Center for Asian American Studies:

UT Austin Center for African and African American Studies:

Assignments, Assessments, Evaluation, Dates

a) The course contains three regular exams and a “replacement” final exam. Regular exams will consist of multiple-choice items and an essay question, and the final exam will consist of essay questions. The final exam can be taken to replace the grade of a regular exam.  All exams have to be taken on the dates specified; the only exception to this rule are cases involving a truly pressing situation (medical) or involving authorization by UT Austin.  In such exceptional cases, makeup exams for the first two regular exams have to be taken within a week after the originally designated dates in the sociology room for make-ups. In the rare possibility that a student needs to take a makeup for the third exam, arrangements with have to be made with me. Makeup exams will consist of essay questions. Students who miss a scheduled exam must alert me beforehand and consult with me regarding the makeup.  There is no procedure for making up the final exam outside of cases that are of a true exceptional and unusual personal pressing situation. Students have to take all exams on the dates and times specified.  Exams cannot be taken earlier or later than the dates and times specified.

 b) Students are required to submit a report (minimum of 6 pages double space) based on a review of two articles on immigration-related research that have been published in peer-reviewed journals.  Guidelines for writing this research report are given at the end of this syllabus.  I have selected the following journals for students to review and select the articles: International Migration Review, American Journal of SociologyAmerican Sociological Review,Ethnic and Racial StudiesBlack StudiesJournal of Asian American Studies, Social Forces, and Social Science Quarterly. Additional journals may be added to this list during the semester. Please consult the course schedule below for the due date of the research report.  Late research reports will be accepted up to one class meeting late, but will be assessed a 10-point late penalty. Students have to give the URL address of the articles if they are accessible on-line, or provide a copy of the first page of each article if they are not accessible on-line.

 c) All dates specified in this syllabus for course topics, exams, and papers are subject to change given unforeseen developments.

 4. Use of Blackboard

It is my intention to use Blackboard ( to help manage the course and to pursue interaction with students.  I plan to use Blackboard to make announcements, distribute information, communicate with students, and post grades.  Students are encouraged to use Blackboard to communicate and share comments and information.  Please check your Blackboard site regularly to look for communications from me or from other students in the class.  Support for using Blackboard can be obtained from the ITS Help Desk at 475-9400, Monday through Friday, from 8am to 6pm. 


 a) Three regular exams (40 multiple-choice items and an essay question): 100 points per exam x 3 regular exams = 300 points

 b) Research report: 40 points

 c) Final course grades will be determined based on the percent of total points made out of a grand total of 340 points:  90%-100% = A, 80%-89.5% = B, 70%-79.5% = C, 60%-69.5% = D, below 60% = F.


MAS 374 • Young Adult: Fiction And Film

36453 • Perez, Domino R.
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm BUR 112
(also listed as E 344L)
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Instructor:  Perez, D

Unique #:  35770

Semester:  Fall 2014

Cross-lists:  MAS 374

Prerequisites: C L 315, E 603B, 316K, or T C 603B.

Description: This course will focus on young-adult fiction (also known as young adult literature) that has broad critical and/or popular appeal beyond its intended audience. As an additional critical component of the course, we will augment the readings with films and books inclusive of diverse experiences and interests but that do not necessarily have the benefit of popular or commercial appeal. While conversations about YA fiction generally focus on the protagonist’s coming-of-age or strategies for incorporating these works into the classroom, our discussions of the works will be framed by critical approaches such as feminist, cultural, ethnic, and gender, as well as genre and film studies. One major goal is to consider how these works by British, Mexican American, American, and American Indian authors speak to global, social, and political concerns.

Required Texts: Rowling, J.K. Harry Potter The Sorcerer’s Stone (1998); Collins, Suzanne. Hunger Games (2008); Dashner, James. Maze Runner (2009); Roth, Veronica. Divergent (2011); Cisneros, Sandra. The House on Mango Street (1984); Rivera, Tomas. and the earth did not devour him (1971); Alexie, Sherman. Flight (2007).

Requirements & Grading: Participation/Attendance 10%; Reading Quizzes 30%; Final Project 30%; Group Presentation 30%.

MAS 374 • Life/Lit Of Southwest-Mex Am

36455 • Hinojosa-Smith, Rolando
Meets TTH 930am-1100am GAR 2.112
(also listed as E 342)
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Instructor:  Hinojosa-Smith, R

Unique #:  35750

Semester:  Fall 2014

Cross-lists:  MAS 374

Flags:  Cultural Diversity

Computer Instruction:  No

Prerequisites: Nine semester hours of coursework in English or rhetoric and writing.

Description: This close-reading course focuses on works by men and women descendants of the original colonial settlers under the Spanish crown and some whose ancestors were Mexican-born. The course will cover two genres, the novel and a book of poetry, the latter by Pat Mora. This is a close-reading class.

During the course of the semester, the students will be reminded orally and by the written word that this is a course in an English Department and that punctuation, clarity, mechanics, diction, and grammar are not only important, they are also essential.

Texts: Sandra Cisneros, The House on Mango Street; Tomás Rivera, . . . And the Earth Did Not Devour Him; Pat Mora, Borders; Francisco Jiménez, The Circuit and Breaking Through; Rolando Hinojosa, Ask a Policeman.

Requirements & Grading: This course calls for six to seven essays to meet the writing requirements. The essays are worth 8% and the daily quizzes count for 15 points of the final grade.

This is an English course, and it calls for close reading. The following elements: punctuation, clarity, mechanics, usage, and grammar are the students’ responsibility. It is essential, then, that you know what they mean.

Class lectures will provide the cultural and linguistic backgrounds found in the texts. Student-led discussion either individually or by teams of twos will also form part of the class instruction.

In poetry, each student will memorize and recite a poem from Mora's text; to prevent embarrassment, the recitation will be held individually at the student's and the instructor's convenience in the instructor's office.

Class attendance is a student's responsibility; more than three absences will affect the students' grades; this does not affect death in the family or illness; the latter must be verified by a doctor's written statement.

MAS 374 • Latino Politics

36460 • Leal, David L.
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm CLA 0.130
(also listed as GOV 370K, LAS 337M)
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Course Description

This course will introduce you to the political experiences of the United States Latino populations in the present and historically.  The course begins with a discussion of political identity: what does it mean to be Latino, Hispanic, or Chicano, and what are the politically relevant commonalities and differences in Latino communities.  We then discuss Latino political history, starting with the Spanish empire but focusing particularly on the 19th and 20th centuries in Texas and the southwest.  In doing so, we will study Latino political movements, organizations, and important individuals.  Moving to recent decades, the class examines Latino inputs into the American political system – particularly public opinion, voting, and the role of gender in politics.  The class also discusses the two largest non-Mexican national-origin groups in the U.S.: Puerto Ricans and Cuban Americans.  We then explore the growing voice of Latinos in political institutions, such as the U.S. Congress and state legislatures.  Lastly, the class covers key policy issues for Latino communities, particularly education and immigration. 


Grading Policy

Midterm: 30%

Final: 40%

Writing assignment: 20%

Class participation and engagement: 10%



-Garcia, F. Chris, and Gabriel Sanchez. 2007. Hispanics and the U.S. Political System: Moving Into the Mainstream. New York: Prentice Hall.

-Gutierrez, David. 1995. Walls and Mirrors: Mexican Americans, Mexican Immigrants, and the Politics of Identity. Berkeley: University of California Press.



Flag: Cultural Diversity

MAS 374 • Texas, 1914 To The Present

36465 • Zamora, Emilio
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm BUR 208
(also listed as HIS 320R, URB 353)
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The reading and lecture course surveys change and continuity in the history of Texas within the context of U.S. history and Mexico-U.S. relations.  Special attention is given to Mexico-U.S. relations, politics and social relations between 1900 and 1970, as well as the home front experience of Texans during the Second World War.  The overriding theme is the incorporation of Texas into the national socio-economy from the state’s early “colonized” status to its modern position as a fully integrated part of the nation.  The course is organized around our readings.  The De la Teja/Marks/Tyler text provides a synthesis of Texas history while the Zamora text provides a closer examination of home front experiences.  The two chapters from the Campbell book will serve as a basis for an examination of the post-war period extending into 2001.

            Three semester hours of Texas history may be substituted for half of the American history requirement.  Course materials, including a copy of my resume, this syllabus, lecture notes, bibliographies, and notes on interviewing techniques, will be available on Blackboard (, UT’s course management site.  Call the ITS help desk (475-9400) if you have problems accessing the site.


Randolph B. Campbell, Chapter 16, “Modern Texas, 1971-2001,” In Gone To Texas, A History of the Lone Star Stateby Randolph B. Campbell (New York: Oxford University Press, 2003): 438-67.

Jesús de la Teja, Paula Marks, and Ron Tyler, Texas, Crossroads of North America (New York: Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004).

Emilio Zamora, Claiming Rights and Righting Wrongs in Texas, Mexican Workers and Job Politics during WWII(College Station: Texas A&M University Press, 2009).


Research paper (35%), 5 chapter reports (25%), and 4 film reports (40%).

MAS 374 • Mexican Amer Indig Heritage

36470 • Menchaca, Martha
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm CLA 0.112
(also listed as ANT 322M, LAS 324L)
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This course examines the cultural prehistory and racial history of Mexican Americans from 1519 to the present.  The purpose of the course is to examine how policies and laws enacted by the governments of Spain, Mexico, and the U.S. impacted the ethnic and racial identities of Mexican Americans.  The geographic focus of the course is Mexico and the United States Southwest

MAS 374 • Radical Latinos

36480 • Cordova, Cary
Meets TTH 1230pm-200pm BUR 228
(also listed as AMS 370)
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The word “radical” encompasses a wide variety of meanings, including being different, “other,” new, extreme, awesome, and even of the Left.  Radical suggests a “black sheep” quality, or an inability to fit into standard operating procedure.  This course will use the word “radical” to examine the social positioning and history of Latinas/os in the United States.  Specifically, we will use this framework to analyze the histories of Latinas/os who have gone against mainstream expectations, or who have challenged or critiqued the status quo in provocative and unexpected ways.  The class will examine a wide range of radical representations, from “radical” activists like Emma Tenayuca, Luisa Moreno, Lolita Lebron, and Reies López Tijerina, to radical social movements like the Brown Berets and the Young Lords, to radical films like Salt of the Earth, to radical artists like Guillermo Gomez-Peña, Asco, and Raphael Montañez Ortiz.  In looking at what is considered extreme, out of the ordinary, or unusual, the class is equally invested in what is appropriate, ordinary, traditional, and everyday.                 



Participation:                           20%

Response Paper #1:                  10%

Response Paper #2:                  20%

Response Paper #3:                  20%

Final Research Paper:                30%


Possible Texts

Culture Clash, Culture Clash in America

Cherrie Moraga, Heroes and Saints and Other Plays

Luis Valdez, The Mummified Deer and Other Plays

Guillermo Verdecchia, Fronteras Americanas / American Borders

Darrel Enck-Wanzer, ed., The Young Lords, a Reader

Reies Lopez Tijerina, They Called Me "King Tiger": My Struggle for the Land and Our Rights


Upper-division standing required. Students may not enroll in more than two AMS 370 courses in one semester.

Flag(s): Writing



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