Sunday, June 4, 2017

Abolition of Whiteness course offered at Hunter College



The following article appeared on campusreform.org on May 25

By Anthony Gockowski,  Investigative Reporter

Hunter College will offer students an “Abolition of Whiteness” course this fall to discuss how “white supremacy and violence” influence individual identity.

The course fulfills one of four graduation requirements in political science, and its instructor has requested that it be added to the list of courses that satisfy a diversity requirement. 

Hunter College will offer students an “Abolition of Whiteness” course this fall to discuss how “white supremacy and violence” influence individual identity.  

The course, taught by Women and Gender Studies Professor Jennifer Gaboury, is cross-listed for both her department and the Political Science Department, where it fulfills one of four required courses in the “4 subfields of political science” under the umbrella of POLSC 204: Contemporary Issues in Political Theory.

While the school’s official course catalog discloses very little about what is actually discussed in the course, a flyer advertising a previous iteration of the class from the fall of 2016 describes it as “an overview of whiteness studies in the United States,” specifically “focusing on concepts of consciousness, in/visibility, disavowal, and resentment.”

“We’ll be examining how whiteness—and/or white supremacy and violence—is intertwined with conceptions of gender, race, sexuality, class, body ability, nationality, and age,” the description continues, adding that “a petition for this course is on file with the College Senate so that it fulfills Pluralism and Diversity Parts B, C, or D,” referring to mandatory courses that focus, respectively, on “the historical conditions, perspectives and/or intellectual traditions” of ethnic minorities in the U.S., women and those with non-traditional sexual orientations, and Europeans.

As of press time, “Abolition of Whiteness” does not appear to have been added to the list of courses that satisfy the “Pluralism and Diversity requirement,” though at least 30 other Women and Gender Studies courses are included, including one course on “Feminist Political Theory” and a special topics course on “body politics.”

Notably, students earn 3 academic credits for completing the course. Thus far, 15 students have already registered for the fall course out of a maximum enrollment of 25.

Campus Reform reached out to Gaboury for further elaboration on her course, but did not receive a response in time for publication.

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