PHL 209 : Philosophy of Race and Decolonization

Transcript title

Race Decolonization



Grading mode

Standard letter grades

Total contact hours


Lecture hours


Recommended preparation

WR 121Z.

Course Description

Provides a framework for understanding the intersection of race and class. Focuses on the historical relationship between colonial powers and the production of global racial inequality. Examines the racialized institutions of mass incarceration in America and border violence more broadly—i.e, globally, and concludes by demonstrating how both serve to advance the interests of capital. Topics include colonialism, critical theory, Jim Crow, neoliberalism, the criminal justice system, resistance movements, and radical love. Selected authors include subaltern historians, Black scholars, imprisoned intellectuals, enemies of the State, resistance fighters, and poets.

Course learning outcomes

1. Demonstrate an historical knowledge of the colonialist era.
2. Explain the historical relationship between the colonialist project, the emergence of capitalism, and the production of global racial inequality.
3. Identify the various ways that global borders manifest themselves and express their role in establishing power relations.
4. Describe race relations in America and articulate the patterns of oppression that link the eras of enslavement, Jim Crow, and mass incarceration.
5. Analyze differences between the distinctive notions of “justice” and “law and order,” and evaluate their respective arguments.
6. Define key Marxian terms such as historical materialism, exploitation, expropriation, alienation, and primitive accumulation.
7. Discuss the basic practices of decolonization and develop an interpretation of radical love.
8. Challenge shared assumptions and racial stereotypes through written and oral argumentation.

Content outline

  1. Colonialism
  2. Critical Theory
  3. Slavery, Jim Crow, and Mass Incarceration
  4. Border Violence
  5. Neoliberalism
  6. History of Race Relations in America
  7. Justice, Abolition, Resistance
  8. Class and Race Intersectionality

Required materials

No textbook is required

General education/Related instruction lists

  • Human Relations
  • Social Science
  • Cultural Literacy

Outside of

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