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Dr. Susan Sage Heinzelman, Director 2505 University Avenue, A4900, Burdine Hall 536, Austin Texas 78712 • 512-471-5765

Daina Ramey Berry

Core Faculty Ph.D., 1998, University of California, Los Angeles

Associate Professor

WGS 340 • Black Women In America

47810 • Fall 2013
Meets M 300pm-600pm GAR 0.128
(also listed as AFR 374D, HIS 350R )
show description

In an White House Blog posted on 10 February 2012, First Lady Michelle Obama announced the 2012 theme for Black History Month: Celebrating Black Women in American Culture and History. “They are women,” she explained, “who fought against slavery, who stood up for Women’s suffrage, and marched in our streets for our civil rights.”  Continuing, she noted that African American women also  “… stirred our souls and they’ve open our hearts.”  In addition to celebrating Black Women’s contributions, we must also look at the struggles women overcame to be a part of the American fabric; struggles over their images, representation, and reputation. To that end, the course will use primary sources, historical monographs, and essays to provide a chronological and thematic overview of the experiences of black women in America from their African roots to the circumstances they face in the present era.  This seminar class will be discussion driven and will address the following topics: the evolution of African American women’s history as field of inquiry; African American women historians; the trans-Atlantic slave trade; enslavement in the United States; abolition and freedom; racial uplift; urban migration; labor and culture; the modern civil rights movement; organized black feminism; hip-hop culture; AIDS and the Black Women's Health study.  Additionally, the course will draw upon readings written by and about African American women with a particularly emphasis on their approach to gender and race historiography.

Potential Readings:

Assata Shakur, Assata: An AutobiographyTera Hunter, To Joy My Freedom: Southern Black Women’s Lives and Labor After the Civil War (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1997).Catherine M. Lewis and J. Richard Lewis, eds., Women and Slavery in America: A Documentary History (Fayetteville: University of Arkansas Press, 2011).Eric McDuffie, Sojourning for Freedom: Black Women, American Communism, and the Making of Black Left Feminism (Durham: Duke University Press, 2011).Deborah Gray White, Ar’n’t I a Woman?: Female Slaves in the Plantation South (New York: W. W. Norton and Company, 1985).Additional readings will be distributed electronically on Blackboard.

Possible

Class Engagement     20%   This class is an upper division seminar and is discussion driven.  You are expected to make a meaningful contribution to the class discussion every time we meet.   Posting Responses to the Week’s Readings    10% Every week during the semester (except when a writing assignment is due), you will be required to post approximately (5) responses and/or questions about the readings to the course’s Blackboard site.Cultural Critique    20%As a part of this course, you are required to write a 3-5-page critique of a film, play, television episode, advertisement, song or other contemporary cultural artifact authored or performed by an African American woman, or a cultural artifact where a black woman is the subject or protagonist. Outline of Research Paper with Annotated Bibliography    15%Final Research Paper and Oral Presentation    35%

WGS 340 • Black Women In America

47020 • Spring 2012
Meets M 300pm-600pm GAR 0.132
(also listed as AFR 374D, HIS 350R )
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In a New York Times Magazine article, Toni Morrison eloquently described the dilemmas of black female identity in a now oft quoted phrase: “…she had nothing to fall back on; not maleness, not whiteness, not ladyhood, not anything.  And out of the profound desolation of her reality she may well have invented herself.”  By examining the ways in which black women in the United States sought to “invent” themselves as historical agents despite economic, social, and political challenges, Morrison’s statement will, in many ways, form the basis of our intellectual journey. 

To that end, the course will use primary sources, historical monographs, and essays to provide a chronological and thematic overview of the experiences of black women in America from their African roots to the circumstances they face in the present era.  This seminar class will be discussion driven and will address the following topics: the evolution of African American women’s history as field of inquiry; African American women historians; the trans-Atlantic slave trade; enslavement in the United States; abolition and freedom; racial uplift; urban migration; labor and culture; the modern civil rights movement; organized black feminism; hip-hop culture; AIDS and the Black Women's Health study.  Additionally, the course will draw upon readings written by and about African American women with a particularly emphasis on their approach to gender and race historiography.

 

Potential Readings;

Wilma King and Linda Read, eds. African American Women (forthcoming, Blackwell Publishers)

Assata Shakur, Assata

Tiffany Gill, Beauty Shop Politics

Daina Ramey Berry, Swing the Sickle for the Harvest is Ripe

V.P. Franklin and Bettye Collier-Thomas, Sisters in the Struggle

Willie Lee Rose, A Documentary History of Slavery in North America

Carroll Parrott Blue, The Dawn at My Back: Memoir of a Black Texas Upbringing. 

Deborah Gray White,ed.  Telling Histories:  Black Women Historians in the Ivory Tower.

 

Grading

Class Engagement 10%   

Posting Responses to the Week’s Readings 10% 

Cultural Critique 20%

Outline of Research Paper with Annotated Bibliography 25%

Final Research Paper and Presentation 35%

 

WGS 340 • Gender And Slavery In The Us

47035 • Spring 2012
Meets MW 1100am-1230pm GAR 2.128
(also listed as AFR 374D, HIS 350R )
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Course Description:

How did enslavement affect African American men, women and children? Did their experiences differ based on gender, age, location, or time period?  From the 1970s to the present, historians have been in conversation about they ways gender informs the experience of captivity.   Some approach the subject by identifying the roles enslaved people played in agricultural, nonagricultural, or industrial work settings. While others, focus on collective and individual forms of resistance to the institution.  Enslavement also affected interpersonal relationships despite the fact that African American captives spent most of their time at work. This upper division seminar will examine the gendered experience of chattel slavery in the United States. Through critical analysis, students will engage classic and contemporary texts, films, and songs that focus on slave labor, family, community, sexuality, and the economy. Students will also have the opportunity to analyze primary documents such as slave narratives, plantation records, court documents, and legislation that shaped the lives of bondmen and bondwomen in the United States. 

 

Course Objectives:

The primary objective for this course is to help students learn about the gendered nature of enslavement in the United States.  In addition, students will participate in the practice of history by reviewing a book, analyzing primary documents, providing an oral presentation, and producing a research paper based on primary and secondary sources.

 

Grading Scale & Deadlines:

Attendance and Participation    20%    

Primary Document Analysis      20%    

Book Review                             15%    

Presentation                            15%    

Final Paper                              30%    

 

Readings:

Kawame Anthony Appiah, Narrative of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave & Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl (New York: The Modern Library, 2000).

John W. Blassingame, The Slave Community: Plantation Life in the Antebellum South (New York: Oxford University Press, 1972, 1979).

Jennifer Morgan, Laboring Women: Reproduction and Gender in New World Slavery (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2004).

Willie Lee Rose, ed.  A Documentary History of Slavery in North America (Athens: The University of Georgia Press, 1999). 

Deborah Gray White, Ar’n’t I a Woman? Female Slaves in the Plantation South (New York: W. W. Norton and Company, 1985, 1999).

Electronic readings will be distributed, placed on Blackboard, or available via JSTOR

WGS 340 • Antebellum Slavery

46935 • Fall 2011
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm PAR 306
(also listed as AFR 374D, HIS 365G )
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When the first Africans arrived in North America, their status was not clear.  Some arrived as part of expeditions searching to “discover” the New World, while others arrived with Europeans as “servants.” By the late 17th century, the majority of Africans who came to this region were enslaved “for their natural life.” Rather than focus on the origins of the peculiar institution, this class examines slavery at its maturity, during the 19th century.  The Antebellum years represented a time when enslaved families and communities were well established, when labor in various settings was highly regimented, and when resistance movements reinforced strict legislation. This is the backdrop of which students will learn about chattel slavery in the United States.  Some of the specific topics covered include community development, cultural expression, family formation, human commodification, labor systems, regional variation, religious practices, and resistance movements among the enslaved.  

Texts 

Berry, Daina Ramey. Swing the Sickle for the Harvest is Ripe: Gender and Slavery in Antebellum Georgia. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2007.

Dunaway, Wilma. Slavery in the American Mountain South. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003.

Kaye, Anthony. Joining Places: Slave Neighborhoods in the Old South. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2009.

King, Wilma. Stolen Childhood: Slave Youth in Nineteenth Century America. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1996.

Melish, Joanne Pope. Disowning Slavery: Gradual Emancipation and “Race” in New England, 1780-1860. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1998.

Raboteau, Albert. Slave Religion: The “Invisible Institution” in the Antebellum South. New York Oxford University Press, 2004 (revised edition).

Coursepack with additional readings.

 

Grading 

Primary Document Analysis 20%

Group Presentation 20%

Papers 30%

Final 30%

 

This course partially fulfills the legislative requirement for American history. 

WGS 340 • Gender And Slavery In The Us

47660 • Spring 2011
Meets M 300pm-600pm CBA 4.342
(also listed as AFR 374D, HIS 350R )
show description

350R

Course Description:

How did enslavement affect African American men, women and children? Did their experiences differ based on gender, age, location, or time period?  From the 1970s to the present, historians have been in conversation about they ways gender informs the experience of captivity.   Some approach the subject by identifying the roles enslaved people played in agricultural, nonagricultural, or industrial work settings. While others, focus on collective and individual forms of resistance to the institution.  Enslavement also affected interpersonal relationships despite the fact that African American captives spent most of their time at work. This upper division seminar will examine the gendered experience of chattel slavery in the United States. Through critical analysis, students will engage classic and contemporary texts, films, and songs that focus on slave labor, family, community, sexuality, and the economy. Students will also have the opportunity to analyze primary documents such as slave narratives, plantation records, court documents, and legislation that shaped the lives of bondmen and bondwomen in the United States. 

 

Course Objectives:

The primary objective for this course is to help students learn about the gendered nature of enslavement in the United States.  In addition, students will participate in the practice of history by reviewing a book, analyzing primary documents, providing an oral presentation, and producing a research paper based on primary and secondary sources.

 

Grading Scale & Deadlines:

Attendance and Participation    20%    

Primary Document Analysis      20%    

Book Review                                         15%    

Presentation                                          15%    

Final Paper                                           30%    

 

Readings:

 

Kawame Anthony Appiah, Narrative of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave & Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl (New York: The Modern Library, 2000).

 

John W. Blassingame, The Slave Community: Plantation Life in the Antebellum South (New York: Oxford University Press, 1972, 1979).

 

Jennifer Morgan, Laboring Women: Reproduction and Gender in New World Slavery (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2004).

Willie Lee Rose, ed.  A Documentary History of Slavery in North America (Athens: The University of Georgia Press, 1999).

 

Deborah Gray White, Ar’n’t I a Woman? Female Slaves in the Plantation South (New York: W. W. Norton and Company, 1985, 1999).

 

Electronic readings will be distributed, placed on Blackboard, or available via JSTOR

WGS 340 • Antebellum Slavery

47085 • Fall 2010
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm GAR 0.120
(also listed as AFR 374D, HIS 365G )
show description

HISTORY: 365G

Antebellum Slavery

AFR 374D & WGS 340

Fall 2010

The University of Texas at Austin

 

Dr. Daina Ramey Berry

Office:  Garrison Hall Room 3.224

Office Hours: Thursdays 1:00-3:00pm or by appointment

Office Phone: 512-475-4310 (direct) or 512.471.3261 (dept.)

Class: Tuesdays & Thursdays 3:30pm-5:00pm

Location: GAR 0.120

Unique:  HIS 39470                  AFR 35320 WGS 47085

 

Course Description:

When the first Africans arrived in North America, their status was not clear.  Some arrived as part of expeditions searching to “discover” the New World, while others arrived with Europeans as “servants.” By the late 17th century, the majority of Africans who came to this region were enslaved “for their natural life.” Rather than focus on the origins of the peculiar institution, this class examines slavery at its maturity, during the 19th century.  The Antebellum years represented a time when enslaved families and communities were well established, when labor in various settings was highly regimented, and when resistance movements reinforced strict legislation. This is the backdrop of which students will learn about chattel slavery in the United States.  Some of the specific topics covered include community development, cultural expression, family formation, human commodification, labor systems, regional variation, religious practices, and resistance movements among the enslaved. This course contains sensitive content and students should respect the emotions and opinions of their colleagues during class discussions. 

 

 

Course Objectives:

This is an independent inquiry course in which students will be expected to work inside and outside of class on group and individual projects.  Using on-campus resources at the Briscoe Center for American History and the Perry-Castañeda Library, students will be exposed to a variety of primary and secondary historical records.  They will learn how to research special collections and how to use original material in their presentations and papers. Students should complete this course with a solid understanding of slave life in America and a sensitivity to the ways bondpeople experienced captivity during the last four decades of this “peculiar institution.”

 

Grading Policy:

Attendance 20%

Class Discussion 15%

Oral Presentation 20%

Response Papers 20%

Final 25%

 

Texts:

Berry, Daina Ramey. Swing the Sickle for the Harvest is Ripe: Gender and Slavery in

                  Antebellum Georgia. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2007.

 

Dunaway, Wilma. Slavery in the American Mountain South. Cambridge: Cambridge

 University Press, 2003.

 

Kaye, Anthony. Joining Places: Slave Neighborhoods in the Old South. Chapel Hill: University                                    of North Carolina Press, 2009.

 

King, Wilma. Stolen Childhood: Slave Youth in Nineteenth Century America. Bloomington:                   Indiana University Press, 1996.

 

Melish, Joanne Pope. Disowning Slavery: Gradual Emancipation and “Race” in New England,                   1780-1860. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1998.

 

Raboteau, Albert. Slave Religion: The “Invisible Institution” in the Antebellum South. New                   York Oxford University Press, 2004 (revised edition).

 

Policies and Procedures:

 

University of Texas Honor Code

The core values of The University of Texas at Austin are learning, discovery, freedom, leadership, individual opportunity, and responsibility. Each member of the university is expected to uphold these values through integrity, honesty, trust, fairness, and respect toward peers and community.

 

Plagiarism

The University's Institutional Rules (Section 11-802(d)) define plagiarism as including, "but not limited to, the appropriation of, buying, receiving as a gift, or obtaining by any other means material that is attributable in whole or in part to another source . . . and presenting that material as one's own academic work offered for credit."  In other words, “handing in someone else's work and taking credit for it as if it were your own.” Source: History Department statement on Academic Integrity: http://www.utexas.edu/cola/depts/history/about/academic-integrity.php

For examples of plagiarism see the site above or the Student Judicial Services Website.

 

Documented Disability Statement

The University of Texas at Austin provides upon request appropriate academic accommodations for qualified students with disabilities. For more information, contact Services for Students with Disabilities at 471-6259 (voice) or 232-2937 (video phone) or http://www.utexas.edu/diversity/ddce/ssd

 

Use of E-Mail for Official Correspondence to Students

E-mail is recognized as an official mode of university correspondence; therefore, you are responsible for reading your e-mail for university and course-related information and announcements. You are responsible to keep the university informed about changes to your e-mail address. You should check your e-mail regularly and frequently—the university recommends daily, but at minimum twice a week—to stay current with university-related communications, some of which may be time-critical. You can find UT Austin’s policies and instructions for updating your e-mail address at: http://www.utexas.edu/its/policies/emailnotify.php

 

Email in recent years has often mistakenly become a substitute for office hours and students sometimes abuse email by the nature of their comments, requests, demands, and questions.  This practice will not be tolerated.  The professor is an advocate of contact with students through office hours and prefers to meet in person.  Therefore, this course will utilize email to post discussion questions for upcoming class meetings, notification of schedule changes, announcements for lectures on campus, or any other miscellaneous issues that relate to the course. Please be courteous over email and try to save questions for class discussions so that all students can benefit from the response.

 

Religious Holy Days

By UT Austin policy, you must notify me of your pending absence at least fourteen days prior to the date of observance of a religious holy day. If you must miss a class, an examination, a work assignment, or a project in order to observe a religious holy day, I will give you an opportunity to complete the missed work within a reasonable time after the absence.

 

Behavior Concerns Advice Line (BCAL)

If you are worried about someone who is acting differently, you may use the Behavior Concerns Advice Line to discuss by phone your concerns about another individual’s behavior. This service is provided through a partnership among the Office of the Dean of Students, the Counseling and Mental Health Center (CMHC), the Employee Assistance Program (EAP), and The University of Texas Police Department (UTPD).

Call 512-232-5050 or visit http://www.utexas.edu/safety/bcal

 

 

COURSE SCHEDULE:

The professor reserves the right to deviate or modify parts of this schedule. All changes will include advanced written notice.

 

Week 1

8/26/10                   Course Introduction & Overview                                                      RP#1

 

Week 2

8/31/10                  Topic – Historiography of Slavery Studies

9/2/10                  Topic – Middle Passage & Arrival in the Americas

 

Week 3

9/7/10                  Film:  Middle Passage                                                                        RP#2

9/9/10                  Topic - Slave Community – Discussion of Kaye, Joining Places*

 

Week 4

9/14/10                  Briscoe Center for American History – Research Workshop

9/16/10                  Film: Slavery and the Making of America                                     RP#3

 

Week 5

9/21/10                   PCL – Library Workshop

9/23/10                    Slavery in the North – Discussion of Melish, Disowning Slavery*

 

Week 6

9/28/10                  Slave Auctions & Sales

9/30/10                  Primary Document Analysis                                                      OP Groups Assigned

                                                                                                             

Week 7

10/5/10                  Slavery in the Appalachian Mountains – Discussion of Dunaway*

10/7/10                  BCAH Library Work Session

 

Week 8

10/12/10                  From Sun-Up to Sun-Down: Work Regimes & Slavery

10/14/10                  Gender & Slave Labor – Discussion of Berry, Swing the Sickle*

 

Week 9

10/19/10                  Film: Sankofa

10/21/10                  Film: Sankofa                                                                                                            RP#4

 

Week 10

10/26/10                  Gender & Family – Courtship, Love & Marriage

10/28/10                  Enslaved Women in America: Creating a Useful Reference Volume

 

Week 11

11/2/10                   Enslaved Children – Discussion of King, Stolen Childhood*

11/4/10                   PCL Work Session – rooms reserved

 

Week 12

11/9/10                   Understanding Suicide During Slavery

11/11/10                   Documenting The History of Suicide & Slavery

 

Week 13

11/16/10                  Religion – Discussion of Raboteau, Slave Religion*

11/18/10                  Resistance                                                      Take-Home Final Exam Distributed

 

Week 14

11/23/10                  ORAL PRESENTATIONS

11/25/10                  No Class Thanksgiving

 

Week 15

11/30/10                  ORAL PRESENTATIONS

12/2/10                  ORAL PRESENTATIONS

 

 

FINAL EXAM DUE:

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 8 no later than 12:00pm

 The History Department Main Office – GAR 1.104

*Please leave your final exam with the department staff person

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