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Edmund T. Gordon, Chair 2109 San Jacinto Blvd , Mailcode E3400, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-471-4362

Eric Darnell Pritchard

Assistant Professor Ph.D., English, 2008, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Assistant Professor of African and African Diaspora Studies
Eric Darnell Pritchard

Contact

Biography

Interests

Literacy; composition theory; rhetoric; community-based writing; African-American and LGBT literature; black feminist theory;black queer theory; hip hop studies; race and masculinities; fashion and performance.

Biography

Eric Darnell Pritchard is an assistant professor of African and African Diaspora Studies. He holds affiliate faculty appointments in English, the Warfield Center for African and African-American Studies, and the Center for Women’s and Gender Studies. His current focus is on the intersections of race, (queer) sexuality, gender and class with historical and contemporary literacy research. Pursuant to those interests he is at work on several research projects including a book-length manuscript  based on a grounded theory analysis of original interviews with sixty black lesbian, gay, bisexual,and transgender people living across the United States. 

Selected Publications:

“For Colored Kids Who Committed Suicide, Our Outrage Isn’t Enough: Queer Youth of Color, Bullying, and the Discursive Limits of Identity and Safety” Harvard Educational Review 83.2 (Summer 2013): 320-­‐345 

"Yearning to Be What We Might Have Been: Queering Black Male Feminism" Palimpsest: A Journal on Women, Gender, and the Black International 1:2 (Fall/Winter 2012): 179-199.

“This is not an empty-headed man in a dress: Literacy, Misused, Reread and Rewritten in Soulopoliz” Southern Communication Journal 74.3 (July-Sept. 2009): 278-299.

“Pathways to Diversity: Social Justice and the Multiplicity of Identities.” Conference on College Composition and Communication (CCCC) Conversations on Diversity Series. 4 December 2008. http://cccc-blog.blogspot.com/2008/12/pathwayw-to-diversity-social-justice.html

“Sista’ Outsider: Queer Women of Color and Hip Hop.” (Co-authored with Maria L. Bibbs) Homegirls Make Some   Noise: Hip Hop Feminism Anthology. Eds. Gwendolyn Pough, Elaine Richardson, Aisha Durham and Rachel Raimist. Munroe, CA: Parker Publishing, 2007. 19-40.

Recent Fellowship Awards/Honors: 

James Weldon Johnson Visiting Scholar Fellowship, Emory University (2013-2014, [Declined])

James Weldon Johnson Visiting Scholar Fellowship, Emory University (2012-2013)

Scholar-in-Residence Fellowship, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture (2009-2010)

Postdoctoral Fellowship in African American Literature, Rutgers University (Declined)

AFR 372E • Hip Hop Rhetorics

30665 • Spring 2014
Meets TTH 330pm-500pm JES A305A
show description

Course Description

This course examines the hip-hop rhetorics of writers, performers, and activists of the hip-hop generation.

These rhetors draw on hip-hop cultural tools, including rap, fashion, dance, graffiti, and deejayin’, to

construct their identities and make and disseminate meaning within and about their social worlds, particularly

around issues of racism, sexism and misogyny, poverty, and heterosexism. Reading some foundational and

more recent scholarship in Hip-Hop Studies, as well as popular articles about hip-hop, we will examine the

ways hip-hop operates with historical, cultural, economic, and political consequence within the U.S. and all

over the world. Topics the course may cover include: rap and social consciousness; hip hop and feminism;

lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) hip-hop performers; youth culture and activism;

spoken word and hip-hop theater; and commercialism and commodification of hip hop culture. Engaging

these topics through a variety of written and oral communication projects, students will learn the usefulness

of employing hip-hop cultural tools as a tool of argument, analysis, and other forms of expression within the

everyday.

 

This course carries the flag for Cultural Diversity in the United States. Cultural Diversity courses are designed

to increase your familiarity with the variety and richness of the American cultural experience. You should

therefore expect a substantial portion of your grade to come from assignments covering the practices, beliefs,

and histories of at least one U.S. cultural group that has experienced persistent marginalization.

This course carries the Writing Flag. Writing Flag courses are designed to give students experience with

writing in an academic discipline. In this class, you can expect to write regularly during the semester, complete

substantial writing projects, and receive feedback from your instructor to help you improve your writing. You

will also have the opportunity to revise one or more assignments, and you may be asked to read and discuss

your peers’ work. You should therefore expect a substantial portion of your grade to come from your written

work. Writing Flag classes meet the Core Communications objectives of Critical Thinking, Communication,

Teamwork, and Personal Responsibility, established by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

Course Goals

-

We will review the basics of performing research, and learn additional research methodologies useful

to responding to assignment questions and prompts.

-

We will apply these skills of analysis to rap lyricism, visual images (e.g. music videos and graffiti) and

other hip hop cultural productions.

-

We will learn about the ways hip-hop cultural tools are used to create texts that transmit meanings

for particular audiences inside and outside hip-hop and youth cultures.

-

We will critique the various strategies of writing and argumentation individuals employ to make

claims about hip hop and hip hop cultural texts, movements, etc. We will draw on our own

experiences to broaden the knowledge base of our instructor and our peers.

-

We will use writing, oral presentations, and discussion to critically engage with the ways hip hop

cultural tools are used to address identity, diversity and culture.

-

We will develop stronger skills as written and verbal communicators in multiple areas of our lives

including the classroom, with friends and colleagues.

 

We will review the basics of writing effective essays, and learn new concepts and principles of textual

and contextual analysis.

-

We will learn strategies for giving timely, careful, and useful feedback to our peers on their writing

assignments, as well as discerning the best ways to listen to and usefully employ the feedback we

receive on our own writing, oral presentations, and other assignments.

-

We will learn and practice the art of community building and productive citizen interaction using the classroom as our space to do so.

REQUIRED TEXTS

For purchase:

- The Hip Hop Wars: What We Talk About When We Talk About Hip-Hop

by Tricia Rose. New York: Basic

Civitas Books, 2008.

-

Course reader

* Please bring your text to EVERY class session when those readings are being discussed according to

the calendar. Failure to do so may impede on your ability to use these texts as a resource during inclass

assignments. Do not assume you can use your colleagues’ book instead.

Additional texts:

-Articles available via Blackboard.

- Films/Videos- You are required to treat films as you would readings for this course.

REQUIRED ASSIGNMENTS

In addition to knowing all concepts presented in class lecture, students will be expected to submit written

assignments, be active and regular contributors to class discussions, do a group presentation on an issue

related to course content, and take regular quizzes on reading and sometimes lecture. Informal and short

assigned writing assignments may be assigned. The major writing and other graded assignments for the

semester are:

1. Three papers (including the final).

2. Group Presentation

3. Quizzes

4. Class Participation

NOTE:

Late Work

I do not accept late work. All assignments must be turned in to me in class on the day that they are due. If

you believe that you may need to turn in an assignment late, please see me right away. I am more apt to work

with you on an alternate date for submitting an assignment if you see me before it is due, than I am afterward.

These exceptions are reserved for cases where you can provide written documentation of an emergency or

other problem. In those cases, you and I will have a meeting and discuss how we can plan accordingly. We are

all involved in each other’s learning process and turning in late assignments would trouble the schedules of

your peers and myself. Turn in all assignments on time.

GRADING

The breakdown of grades will serve as follows:

 

20% Paper 3

20% Paper 2

20% Paper 1

15% Quizzes

15% Group Presentation

10% Class Participation (Discussion, free-writing, etc.)

Grading Scale:

Your papers, discussion leader/group exercise, informal writing and participation will receive a letter grade

assigned the following values:

A / 100-94

A- / 93-90

B+ / 89-87

B / 86-84

B- / 83-80

C+ / 79-77

C / 76-74

C- / 73-70

D+ / 69-67

D / 66-64

D- / 63-60

F / 59-0

 

ATTENDANCE

The following attendance policy will be strictly observed:

You must come to class. Your active participation in class is crucial for both your own development as a

writer and thinker and for the success of the class as a whole. This class will be what you make it. The object

of the attendance policy is not to harm you in any way, but to make sure that you get all that you deserve out

of your education.

Be mindful that your absence affects the class. You may miss 4 sessions without failing, though this may still

adversely effect your grade since it effects your participation during in-class graded assignments. When you

have used three of the allowed absences you will receive a warning from the University via e-mail. Upon the

5th absence you automatically fail the course and receive an F for the semester. You need to keep track of

your attendance, as I am not responsible for warning you that you are dangerously close to a failing the class

due to violation of this policy, though I may do so as a courtesy.

 

You have 4 free absences. I do not discriminate between excused and unexcused absences or different types

of absences (i.e. medical, bereavement, athletic, etc). Use your allowed absences wisely. You are responsible

for getting the notes from a classmate if you miss a lecture for any reason; I do not provide lecture notes

because of an absence under any circumstances. Absence from class does not excuse you from submitting

work on the date that it is due. Should you miss class the day an assignment is due, you should find some way

to have that work submitted by the time class would end.

 

You will not be penalized for missing class on religious holy days. A student who misses

classes or other required activities, including examinations, for the observance of a religious holy day should

inform the instructor, in writing, well in advance of the absence, so that alternative arrangements can be made

to complete work. If you know you will have to miss class(es) for this reason, provide your instructor with the

date(s) as early as possible. Please note that the University specifies very few other excused absences (e.g., jury

duty). When you must miss a class, you are responsible for getting notes and assignments from a classmate.

In addition, you are not to sleep in class. It is neither courteous nor professional to nap or sleep in class, and

the university is a professional environment. If you sleep in class I will call it to your attention immediately. If

this occurs regularly I will invite you to leave the class and you will be marked absent for that day. Please be

sure to get enough rest before coming to class so that you avoid this matter.

Please Do Not Be Late -- You must be on time for class, being late is inconsiderate to me and to the class. If

you are late 4 times the accumulation will be marked as the equivalent of 1 absence in this class. If there is a

reason you may have to be late. If that schedule conflict will make you later than five minutes on a regular

basis, you need to evaluate whether this will effect your attendance over the course of the semester.

 

AFR 387D • Critical Hip Hop Studies

30880 • Spring 2014
Meets TH 1200pm-300pm UTC 1.142
(also listed as E 397M, WGS 393 )
show description

AFR387D: Critical Hip-Hop Studies

Dr. Eric Darnell Pritchard

Thurs. 12-3pm, UTC 1.142

Graduate Course Description

In this graduate seminar we will read foundational and recent scholarship in what may be called “Critical

Hip-Hop Studies,” a scholarly discourse cutting across a range of disciplines, including history, rhetoric,

literary studies, education, religious studies, sociology, and performance studies. The term “critical”

intends to emphasize a stream of research in hip-hop studies that takes on the need to document the

emergence of the culture and its impact on the social, political, economic and educational terrain, but also

calls for and demonstrates various forms of self-critique of hip-hop culture and scholarship. This course

will especially emphasize research on hip-hop in relation to feminism, queerness, education, and arts

activism. Engaging this scholarship, we will posit the implications of this research for the current state

and next steps of hip-hop studies, for the many disciplines from which this research emerges, as well as

implications for the future of hip-hop culture at large. The course will also support the development and

support of each student’s own hip-hop studies research, writing, and creative projects that will also further

the self-reflexive impulse so necessary and increasingly prevalent at this juncture in hip-hop studies with

broad implication for theory, methodology, and pedagogy of this field.

Course Assignments/Grading

Attendance and Participation (Discussion Leading, Critical Questions) 20%

Paper Proposal and Annotated Bibliography 15%

Book Review 20%

Final Paper and/or Artistic Project 45%

Required Texts

In addition to a course reader, students are required to read the following:

Brown, Ruth Nicole.

Black Girlhood Celebration: Toward a Hip Hop Feminist Pedagogy (2008)

Chang, Jeff.

Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop: A History of the Hip-Hop Generation (2005)

Clay, Andreana.

The Hip-Hop Generation Fights Back: Youth, Activism and Post-Civil

Rights Politics

(2012)

Cohen, Cathy.

Democracy Remixed: Black Youth and the Future of American Politics

(2012)

Jeffries, Michael.

Race, Gender, and the Meaning of Hip Hop (2011)

Love, Bettina.

Hip Hop's Li'l Sistas Speak: Negotiating Hip Hop Identities and Politics in

the New South

(2012)

Morgan, Joan.

When Chickenheads Come Home to Roost: A Hip Hop Feminist Breaks it

Down

(1999)

Neal, Mark Anthony.

Looking for Leroy: Illegible Black Masculinities (2013)

Palimpsest

(Special Issue): “The Queerness of Hip Hop/ The Hip Hop of Queerness.” C.

Riley Snorton, ed. Volume 2, Issue 2 (2013)

Perry, Imani.

Prophets of the Hood: Politics and Poetics in Hip Hop (2004)

Pough, Gwendolyn D.

Check It While I Wreck It: Black Womanhood, Hip Hop and the

Public Sphere

(2004)

Pough, G. and E. Richardson, R. Raimist, and A. Durham.

Home Girls Make Some

Noise!: Hip-hop Feminism Anthology

(2007)

Richardson, Elaine.

Hip Hop Literacies (2006)

Rose, Tricia.

Hip Hop Wars: What We Talk About When We Talk About Hip Hop – and

Why it Matters

(2008)

 

AFR 372D • Black Literacy & Language

30357 • Fall 2013
Meets MWF 1000am-1100am JES A230
show description

AFR372D: Black Literacy and Language

Course Description

In this course we will explore the role and meanings of literacy among people of African descent in the United States from the 18th and 19th centuries to the present. We will begin by defining literacy and historic and contemporary debates about it, and move to a more robust emphasis examining the symbiotic relationships between literacy and racial, ethnic, gender, class, and sexual identity formation and affirmation as covered in literacy history and contemporary debates around literacy in United States education.  Course assignments will invite students to use the knowledge gained about African American literacy history and contemporary debates about literacy to think and write about literacy through creative, autobiographical, and ethnographic assignments including a historical envisioning essay, a literacy autobiography, and a documentation of literacy in Austin through participant-observation methods.

Texts

- Self-Taught: African American Education in Slavery and Freedom by Heather Andrea Williams. The University of North Carolina Press, 2005.

- PhD to PH.D.: How Education Saved My Life by Elaine Richardson. Parlor Press, 2013.

- Course Reader

Assignments/Percentages

25% Literacy Ethnography Paper

20% Life Story Interview and Class Presentation

20% Literacy Autobiography Paper

20% Literacy Historiography

15% Class Participation (Quizzes, Writing Workshops, Free-writes)

AFR 372E • Hip Hop Rhetorics

30375 • Fall 2013
Meets MWF 300pm-400pm CLA 0.122
show description

AFR372E: Hip-Hop Rhetorics

 

Course Description

This course examines the hip-hop rhetorics of writers, performers, and activists of the hip-hop generation. These rhetors draw on hip-hop cultural tools, including rap, fashion, dance, graffiti, and deejayin’, to construct their identities and make and disseminate meaning within and about their social worlds, particularly around issues of racism, sexism and misogyny, poverty, heterosexism, and xenophobia. Reading some foundational and more recent scholarship in Hip-Hop Studies we will examine the ways hip-hop operates with historical, cultural, economic, and political consequence within the U.S. and all over the world.

 

Topics the course may include: hip hop and feminism; race and masculinities; Latin@s and hip-hop; lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) hip-hop performers; youth culture and activism; spoken word and hip-hop theater; commercialism and commodification of culture; hip-hop and the sex industry; southern hip hop; reggaeton; hip hop fashion, and hip-hop vernacular.  Engaging these topics through a variety of written and oral communication projects, students will learn the usefulness of employing hip-hop cultural tools as a tool of analysis and self-expression within the everyday.

 

Texts

- The Hip Hop Wars: What We Talk About When We Talk About Hip-Hop by Tricia Rose. New York: Basic Civitas Books, 2008.

 

- The Anthology of Rap edited by Adam Bradley and Andrew DuBois. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2010.

 

- Course Reader

 

Assignments/Percentages

25% Final Paper

20% Paper 2

20% Paper 1

20% Performance Analysis Paper/Presentation

15% Class Participation (Quizzes, Writing Workshops, Exercises, Free-writes)

 

AFR 374F • African Amer Rhet, 1950-Pres

30285 • Fall 2011
Meets TTH 1100am-1230pm PAR 206
(also listed as RHE 330D )
show description

This course is the second of two-parts. We will explore the history of African-American rhetorical traditions in the United States from 1954-Present.  We will focus on the moments and specific rhetorical strategies African-Americans have and continue to employ in quests for social change as manifested through speeches, the essay and various black cultural productions (poetry/spoken word, visual culture, theater).  We will begin by exploring the rhetorical strategies of African-Americans and other supporters of desegregation drew on in their arguments regarding the US Supreme Court case Sweatt v. Painter (1950) which contested the separate but equal doctrine upholding segregation at the University of Texas School of Law and the passage of the Supreme Court’s landmark Brown vs. Board of Education of Topeka decision in 1954, which sought to end government sanctioned segregation of public education in the US. The course will conclude with the 20th/21st century re-popularizing of spoken word through the advent of slam poetry and, more recently, the creation of hip-hop theater and its investment in visions of social justice.

Other topics we will cover: rhetoric/rhetorical education in the Civil Rights and Black Power movements; the Black Arts Movement; Black Feminisms and rhetorics of intersectionality; anti-homophobia/transphobia/”homonormativity” rhetoric and movements for Black lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender liberation; African-American political rhetoric and Shirley Chisholm’s presidential campaign; rhetoric of the work of artists Kara Walker and Kehinde Wiley.

Texts May Include

•    _Understanding African-American Rhetoric: Classical Origins to Contemporary Innovations_ – eds. Elaine Richardson and Ronald Jackson

•    _After Mecca: Women Poets and the Black Arts Movement_ – Cheryl Clarke

•    _The Hip-Hop Wars_ – Tricia Rose

•    A course reader to include essay/article/poetry/speeches from: Combahee River Collective, James Baldwin, Joseph Beam, Staceyann Chinn, Patricia Hill-Collins, Melissa Harris-Lacewell, Essex Hemphill, bell hooks, Audre Lorde, Kobena Mercer, Pat Parker, Gwendolyn Pough, Loretta Ross, Barbara Smith, Kimberly Crenshaw-Williams, and others.

•    Audio/visual clips:  Def Poetry Jam, Martin Luther King, Jr., Ella Baker, Sweet Honey in the Rock, Malcolm X, Shirley Chisholm, Kwame Toure and others.

Grades:

30% -- Final Research Paper (10 pages)

25% -- Short Paper (5 pages)

20% -- Individual OR Group Presentation (TBD)

15% -- Discussion Leader (Submit critical questions/lead discussion of text or concepts)

10% -- Class Participation

AFR 374F • African Amer Rhet, 1950-Pres

30287 • Fall 2011
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm PAR 303
(also listed as RHE 330D )
show description

This course is the second of two-parts. We will explore the history of African-American rhetorical traditions in the United States from 1954-Present.  We will focus on the moments and specific rhetorical strategies African-Americans have and continue to employ in quests for social change as manifested through speeches, the essay and various black cultural productions (poetry/spoken word, visual culture, theater).  We will begin by exploring the rhetorical strategies of African-Americans and other supporters of desegregation drew on in their arguments regarding the US Supreme Court case Sweatt v. Painter (1950) which contested the separate but equal doctrine upholding segregation at the University of Texas School of Law and the passage of the Supreme Court’s landmark Brown vs. Board of Education of Topeka decision in 1954, which sought to end government sanctioned segregation of public education in the US. The course will conclude with the 20th/21st century re-popularizing of spoken word through the advent of slam poetry and, more recently, the creation of hip-hop theater and its investment in visions of social justice.

Other topics we will cover: rhetoric/rhetorical education in the Civil Rights and Black Power movements; the Black Arts Movement; Black Feminisms and rhetorics of intersectionality; anti-homophobia/transphobia/”homonormativity” rhetoric and movements for Black lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender liberation; African-American political rhetoric and Shirley Chisholm’s presidential campaign; rhetoric of the work of artists Kara Walker and Kehinde Wiley.

Texts May Include

•    _Understanding African-American Rhetoric: Classical Origins to Contemporary Innovations_ – eds. Elaine Richardson and Ronald Jackson

•    _After Mecca: Women Poets and the Black Arts Movement_ – Cheryl Clarke

•    _The Hip-Hop Wars_ – Tricia Rose

•    A course reader to include essay/article/poetry/speeches from: Combahee River Collective, James Baldwin, Joseph Beam, Staceyann Chinn, Patricia Hill-Collins, Melissa Harris-Lacewell, Essex Hemphill, bell hooks, Audre Lorde, Kobena Mercer, Pat Parker, Gwendolyn Pough, Loretta Ross, Barbara Smith, Kimberly Crenshaw-Williams, and others.

•    Audio/visual clips:  Def Poetry Jam, Martin Luther King, Jr., Ella Baker, Sweet Honey in the Rock, Malcolm X, Shirley Chisholm, Kwame Toure and others.

Grades:

30% -- Final Research Paper (10 pages)

25% -- Short Paper (5 pages)

20% -- Individual OR Group Presentation (TBD)

15% -- Discussion Leader (Submit critical questions/lead discussion of text or concepts)

10% -- Class Participation

AFR 374F • African Amer Rhet, 1950-Pres

30570 • Spring 2011
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm WEL 3.266
(also listed as RHE 330D )
show description

This course is the second of two-parts. We will explore the history of African-American rhetorical traditions in the United States from 1954-Present.  We will focus on the moments and specific rhetorical strategies African-Americans have and continue to employ in quests for social change as manifested through speeches, the essay and various black cultural productions (poetry/spoken word, visual culture, theater).  We will begin by exploring the rhetorical strategies of African-Americans and other supporters of desegregation drew on in their arguments regarding the US Supreme Court case Sweatt v. Painter (1950) which contested the separate but equal doctrine upholding segregation at the University of Texas School of Law and the passage of the Supreme Court’s landmark Brown vs. Board of Education of Topeka decision in 1954, which sought to end government sanctioned segregation of public education in the US. The course will conclude with the 20th/21st century re-popularizing of spoken word through the advent of slam poetry and, more recently, the creation of hip-hop theater and its investment in visions of social justice.

Other topics we will cover: rhetoric/rhetorical education in the Civil Rights and Black Power movements; the Black Arts Movement; Black Feminisms and rhetorics of intersectionality; anti-homophobia/transphobia/”homonormativity” rhetoric and movements for Black lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender liberation; African-American political rhetoric and Shirley Chisholm’s presidential campaign; rhetoric of the work of artists Kara Walker and Kehinde Wiley.

Texts May Include
•    _Understanding African-American Rhetoric: Classical Origins to Contemporary Innovations_ – eds. Elaine Richardson and Ronald Jackson
•    _After Mecca: Women Poets and the Black Arts Movement_ – Cheryl Clarke
•    _The Hip-Hop Wars_ – Tricia Rose
•    A course reader to include essay/article/poetry/speeches from: Combahee River Collective, James Baldwin, Joseph Beam, Staceyann Chinn, Patricia Hill-Collins, Melissa Harris-Lacewell, Essex Hemphill, bell hooks, Audre Lorde, Kobena Mercer, Pat Parker, Gwendolyn Pough, Loretta Ross, Barbara Smith, Kimberly Crenshaw-Williams, and others.
•    Audio/visual clips:  Def Poetry Jam, Martin Luther King, Jr., Ella Baker, Sweet Honey in the Rock, Malcolm X, Shirley Chisholm, Kwame Toure and others.

Grades:
30% -- Final Research Paper (10 pages)
25% -- Short Paper (5 pages)
20% -- Individual OR Group Presentation (TBD)
15% -- Discussion Leader (Submit critical questions/lead discussion of text or concepts)
10% -- Class Participation

AFR 374F • African Amer Rhet, 1950-Pres

35390 • Fall 2010
Meets TTH 930am-1100am PAR 101
(also listed as RHE 330D )
show description

This course is the second of two-parts. We will explore the history of African-American rhetorical traditions in the United States from 1954-Present.  We will focus on the moments and specific rhetorical strategies African-Americans have and continue to employ in quests for social change as manifested through speeches, the essay and various black cultural productions (poetry/spoken word, visual culture, theater).  We will begin by exploring the rhetorical strategies of African-Americans and other supporters of desegregation drew on in their arguments regarding the US Supreme Court case Sweatt v. Painter (1950) which contested the separate but equal doctrine upholding segregation at the University of Texas School of Law and the passage of the Supreme Court’s landmark Brown vs. Board of Education of Topeka decision in 1954, which sought to end government sanctioned segregation of public education in the US. The course will conclude with the 20th/21st century re-popularizing of spoken word through the advent of slam poetry and, more recently, the creation of hip-hop theater and its investment in visions of social justice.

Other topics we will cover: rhetoric/rhetorical education in the Civil Rights and Black Power movements; the Black Arts Movement; Black Feminisms and rhetorics of intersectionality; anti-homophobia/transphobia/”homonormativity” rhetoric and movements for Black lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender liberation; African-American political rhetoric and Shirley Chisholm’s presidential campaign; rhetoric of the work of artists Kara Walker and Kehinde Wiley.

Texts May Include

•    _Understanding African-American Rhetoric: Classical Origins to Contemporary Innovations_ – eds. Elaine Richardson and Ronald Jackson
•    _After Mecca: Women Poets and the Black Arts Movement_ – Cheryl Clarke
•    _The Hip-Hop Wars_ – Tricia Rose
•    A course reader to include essay/article/poetry/speeches from: Combahee River Collective, James Baldwin, Joseph Beam, Staceyann Chinn, Patricia Hill-Collins, Melissa Harris-Lacewell, Essex Hemphill, bell hooks, Audre Lorde, Kobena Mercer, Pat Parker, Gwendolyn Pough, Loretta Ross, Barbara Smith, Kimberly Crenshaw-Williams, and others.
•    Audio/visual clips:  Def Poetry Jam, Martin Luther King, Jr., Ella Baker, Sweet Honey in the Rock, Malcolm X, Shirley Chisholm, Kwame Toure and others.

Grades:
30% -- Final Research Paper (10 pages)
25% -- Short Paper (5 pages)
20% -- Individual OR Group Presentation (TBD)
15% -- Discussion Leader (Submit critical questions/lead discussion of text or concepts)
10% -- Class Participation

AFR 374F • Politics Of Black Sexuality

35415 • Fall 2010
Meets TTH 200pm-330pm PAR 303
(also listed as RHE 379C, WGS 340 )
show description

It is recommended that students enrolling in this course should have a basic
grounding in rhetoric OR African-American/gender/sexuality, history or theory.

This course is a rhetorical approach to the politics of black sexuality as
examined across disciplines, including: literacy, history, literature, visual
culture and performance. Of particular interest are the multiplicity of black
sexualities with gender, race and ethnicity, class, disability and other
identities. We will examine the ways rhetoric is employed historically and
contemporarily to construct claims regarding black sexuality through various
mediums such as writing and visual culture and the consequences of those
claims. In addition, we will explore the rhetorical strategies Black folks
employ in the interest of “sex-positive” self-making and other expressions of
sexual agency and also how this rhetoric is deployed in resistance to
pathologizing claims and problematic depictions of black sexuality.

After reviewing African-American rhetorical traditions topics may include:
historical perspectives on stereotypes of black sexuality from enslavement
through the present; black women and reproductive justice; rape, sexual
assault, street harassment and other forms of sexual violence; lynching and
black sexuality; “the down low” and queer black male sexualities; sexuality in
black lesbian cinema; sex-work (pornography, sex tourism, prostitution); black
spirituality, the body and the erotic; the impact of HIV/AIDS on the black
community and black political agendas; black LGBTQ people,
hetero/homonormativity and the public sphere.

In addition to knowing all concepts presented in class lecture, students will:
1) be expected to be active and regular contributors to class discussions, 2)
write regular critical response papers selected from course readings (possibly
6 in total), 3) prepare critical questions for and lead at least one day of
discussion, 4) a presentation on an issue related to course content and a final
research paper or other project to be decided on in consultation with and
approved by the professor.


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