Race: Conflict and Change

Module code: L3074B
Level 5
15 credits in spring semester
Teaching method: Lecture, Seminar
Assessment modes: Coursework

This module will examine and explore the issues of race, racism, racial conflict and race relations in contemporary Britain (Please note: although we will mainly refer to Britain, examples from other countries in Europe and the West will be frequently used). Beginning with colonial discourses of the racial 'other', the post-1945 period following the start of mass colonial immigration to Britain, through to the present day you will examine the various historical, social, political, economic and cultural forces and processes through which the concept of race and the racialised subject have been constructed, shaped and changed over time.

The module is taught through lectures and seminars, each focusing on a particular historical, social, political, cultural or theoretical topic, issue and problem related to race in Britain. These range from: the construction and status of race through various discourses and contexts of colonialism, immigration and multiculturalism, issues of identity, representation, power, equality and difference, the relationship between race and other social-political identifications, categories and divisions such as nationality, class, gender, ethnicity and religion, the relationship between race and the law, crime and civil unrest, the history of racial conflict and the development of anti-racist activism, policies and legislation, forms of cultural politics, expression and resistance and, finally, current issues and debates concerning the status of race in Britain.

Module learning outcomes

  • Demonstrate understanding and knowledge of key topics and debates in the sociology of race and ethnicity
  • Compare racial and ethnic stratification in different societies and contexts
  • Assess the strengths and weaknesses of empirical material as evidence on race and ethnicity in society
  • Critically evaluate competing explanations for societal divisions based on race and ethnicity in writing and in an oral presentation