Acadia University Assimilation and Critical Theories of Incorporation Essays

choose among prompt questions 1-5.

  • You can choose as few/many questions within that range to answer, so long as you reach the word count of 800-1000 words (words in titles and works cited not included).

Write prompt question that you’re responding to as your title

Papers that don’t follow this rule automatically lose 10% of points

  • Your thesis is your response to the question

Avoid colloquial statements/loose language

  • For example: “throughout history” is a common one. How far back are we talking? Let’s stick to what can be proved
  • Cite facts and figures whenever you enter them in the text

Citation Format: (author last name year: page number(s))

Write in your own words

  • Quotes should be no more than one sentence
  • List all sources you cited in your Works Cited
  • Have at least two in-class reading sources if you only respond to one prompt, otherwise have at least three in-class reading sources for the entire paper. If you want, you can also add scholarly sources that are not on the syllabus on top of the quota for in-class reading sources.

Reference readings, not lectures. Prove that you read!

Works Cited formats:

  • Article format: Author last name, first name. Year. “Article Title.” Journal TitleNumber: page range of entire article
  • Example: Calderón-Zaks, Michael. 2022. “Technological Change before Globalization: Race and Declining Employment for Mexicans on Railroads, 1945-1970.” Journal of World-Systems Research1(Winter/Spring): 77-97.

Book format: Author last name, first name. Year. Title. Publisher home location: publisher.

  • Example: Ngai, Mae. 2003. Impossible Subjects: Illegal Aliens and the Making of Modern America. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
  • Your TurnItIn score should be under 20%. Scores between 30%-50% is an automatic D grade, anything above 50% is an automatic F

If all of the above criteria are met and you make sound arguments, you can get the full points.

  • Week One: April 3-7: Introductions; Immigration, Race and Ethnicity

Jane Guskin and David Wilson. 2017. “Who are the Immigrants

?” In The Politics of Immigration: Questions and Answers. Monthly Review/NYU Press, pp. 17-27

Links to an external site.

  • .” Daedalus3: 16-25

Michael Omi and Howard Winant. 2011. “Racial Formation in the United States: From the 1960s to the 1990s

.” David B. Grusky, Szonja Szelényi, Eds. The Inequality Reader: Contemporary and Foundational Readings in Race, Class, and Gender (Second Edition). Routledge, pp. 222-227.

Links to an external site.

Film on Friday: Race: The Power of an Illusion, Episode 1

Prompt question: How accurate are popular notions on immigration? From whose perspectives? Do they match the social reality? Why or why not?

Week Two: April 10-14: Immigration and Race Relations Discourses in Sociology

Links to an external site.

.” Phylon2: 34-53

Links to an external site.

Links to an external site.

.” Oxford Handbook of American Immigration and Ethnicity. Oxford University Press, pp. 337-356.

Film on Friday: 

A Legacy of Courage: W.E.B. DuBois and the Philadelphia Negro

Prompt questions: How might our understandings of “race relations” be if Sociology departments in the most endowed universities been more inclusive of race and gender at a much earlier point? 

Week Three: April 17-21: Assimilation and Critical Theories of Incorporation

Links to an external site.

.” Socius 4: 1-10

Stephen Steinberg. 2014. “The Long View of the Melting Pot

.” Ethnic and Racial Studies 5: 790-794

Catherine Ramirez. 2020. “The Paradox of Assimilation

.” In Assimilation: An Alternative History. Oakland: University of California Press, pp. 1-28

Film for Friday: 

Links to an external site.

Prompt question: Just how ambiguous is the meaning of assimilation? Whose perspective dominated this definition and discourse and until when?

Week Four: April 24-28: Immigration, Race, Ethnicity and Labor

Links to an external site.

.” Monthly Review3: 21-31

Links to an external site.

.” Race, Poverty & the Environment2: 16-18

Links to an external site.

.” Antipode2: 365-385

Higginbotham and Andersen, Eds:

Patricia Hill Collins. “Toward a New Vision,” pp. 155-161

Adia Harvey Wingfield. “Racializing the Glass Escalator,” pp. 167-173

  • Deidre Royster. “Race and the Invisible Hand,” pp. 186-195

Prompt question: What has it meant for society to have a racialized division of labor? How has the racialization of labor differentiated life chances by race?

Film on Friday: Uberland

Week Five: May 1-5: Acquiring (or being denied) Whiteness

Richard Delgado and Jean Stefancic, Eds. 1997. Critical White Studies

. Temple University Press

Charles Gallagher. “White Racial Formation: Into the Twenty-First Century

,” pp. 6-11

George Martinez. “Mexican-Americans and Whiteness

Links to an external site.

,” pp. 210-213

Karen Brodkin Sacks. “The GI Bill: Whites Only Need Apply

Links to an external site.

,” pp. 310-313

Links to an external site.

?” pp. 395-401

James Barrett and David Roediger. “How White People Became White

,” pp. 402-406

Ian Haney Lopez. 2006. White by Law: The Legal Construction of Race

. NYU Press, Ch. 2

Links to an external site.

. Rowman & Littlefield, Chapter 11 (pp. 234-245).

  • Manuel Pastor and Pierrette Hondagneu-Sotelo. 2021. “Why did So Few Latinos Identify as White in the 2020 Census?” Los Angeles Times

Links to an external site.

, September 9.

Links to an external site.

  • Prompt question: What did it mean materially to acquire whiteness and how did the social process develop? 
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