Course Description

  • Instructor: Garcia-Medina, William | González, Juan D.
  • Description:

    Comparative study of Latino and Caribbean cultures by reviewing key definitions of culture, paying attention to the historical and disciplinary development of the term, as well as the key debates on cultural studies in the Humanities. The second part of the course reviews some of the key debates in the study of culture in Caribbean and Latinos studies, such as the links between historical experience, ethnicity, race and culture, the quest for and critique of national and ethnic identities, populism and studies on popular culture, the cultural contacts paradigm and hybridity, the multicultural debate, the Culture Wars of the 1980s, gender and queer studies, the study of cultures in displacement, the ethnic turn in cultural studies, the analysis of visual cultures, and the emergence of pop, media and electronic cultures.

  • Learning Goals:

    This course satisfies two SAS Core Curriculum goals: Areas of Inquiry, Arts and Humanities P: Analyze arts and/or literatures in themselves and in relation to specific histories, values, languages, cultures, and technologies and Writing and Communication skills, Revision Based Writing and Communication (WCr).

    Course Learning Goals:

    1. Students will learn key definitions of culture, paying attention to the historical and disciplinary development of the term, as well as the key debates on cultural studies in the Humanities. This fulfills the Arts and Humanities requirements of the SAS Core curriculum (p).
    2. The course will teach students how to approach studies of culture using an interdisciplinary approach.
    3. Students will become familiar with major debates and particular definitions of culture that have been used in the articulation of Latino and Caribbean studies.
    4. Students will learn writing skills, through essay exams written in class, workshops conducted during class time to work on peer-editing of their essays, and by writing and re-writing three short “reflexiones” on the primary texts analyzed in class. This fulfills Writing and Communication skills requirement of the SAS Core Curriculum, Revision Based Writing and Communication (WCr).
    5. The course will also cover a basic historical chronology for Caribbean from 1865 until the present, as well as an overview of the constitution of Hispanic and Latino communities in the United States from 1848 until today.
    6. Students will learn how to conduct historically grounded analysis of literary, visual and performative cultural manifestations.

    A complete description of Department Learning Goals and Major/Minor requirements can be found on the LHCS website: https://latcar.rutgers.edu/

  • Required Reading:

    All required texts available on Sakai.

  • Evaluation:

    Class Attendance and Participation 10%
    3 “reflexiones” or 3-4 pages reaction papers 30%
    Midterm (take home) 15%
    2 essay exams written in class 20%
    Pop quizzes 10%
    Partial Exam due on the day of the final exam (take home) 15%

    The readings and grade breakdown may vary slightly from semester to semester. This course synopsis is intended for informative purposes only; it is provisional and subject to change before the beginning of the semester.

  • Credits: 3
  • SAS Core Certified: AHp, WCR
  • Disclaimer: The information in this course description is subject to change. For up-to-date course information, please refer to the syllabus on your course site (e.g. Canvas).