Effective: Late Spring 8-Week, 2017/2018

ANTH 270: *Minority Cultures And Relations

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  Course Description

Survey of historical and contemporary minority-majority relations among various racial, ethnic and gender groups.  Focus on the social construction of race and ethnicity.  Course meets multicultural graduation requirement. Cross-listed as SOCI 270.

Prerequisite: None

Proctored Exams: Midterm and Final



  • Farley, John. Majority-Minority Relations. 6th. Prentice Hall, Inc., 2012.
    • ISBN-978-0-205-00657-1
  • Fox, Helen. When Race Breaks Out: Conversations about Race and Racism in College Classrooms. (Third Edition). Peter Lang Publishers, 2017.
    • ISBN-978-1-4331-3478-4
  • Rothenberg, Paula S. White Privilege: Essential Readings on the Other Side of Racism. 5th. Worth Publishers.
    • ISBN-978-1-4292-4220-2

MBS Information

Textbooks for the course may be ordered from MBS Direct. You can order

For additional information about the bookstore, visit http://www.mbsbooks.com.

  Course Overview

This course is designed to develop an understanding of racial and ethnic diversity as well as an understanding of the history of and current arenas of racial and ethnic inequality.  We will work to understand our roles in the system as oppressors as well as oppressed.  In this course we are going to do a number of things.  We will analyze the history of race and ethnic relations in the United States, which is a history of dominant group (white) oppression of various subordinate groups (African Americans, Latinos, Native Americans and Asian Americans).  We will interrogate these unequal power relations through an in-depth analysis of prejudice and discrimination and the various sociological and social-psychological perspectives on majority-minority relations.  We will then delve into institutional discrimination along racial and ethnic lines in the economic sphere, in educational institutions, as well as in the American political and legal system.  We will generate an understanding of minority group movements for social change and evaluate the current state of American race and ethnic relations through an analysis of policies such as affirmative action and practices such as hate group activity and hate crimes.    

  Technology Requirements

Participation in this course will require the basic technology for all online classes at Columbia College:
  • A computer with reliable Internet access
  • A web browser
  • Acrobat Reader
  • Microsoft Office or another word processor such as Open Office

You can find more details about standard technical requirements for our courses on our site.

  Course Learning Outcomes

  1. Describe and explain the origin of minority group status and the significant contact situations.
  2. Evaluate the major forms of minority/majority relations including discrimination, segregation, assimilation, pluralism and separatism.
  3. Describe the current majority/minority relations in the U.S. along racial/ethnic lines, as well as gender and sexuality.
  4. Describe and explain institutional discrimination in all major society institutions.
  5. Explain changing demographics in the United States and effect that will have on all aspects of society (the demographic breakdown of our classrooms, neighborhoods, workplaces).


Grading Scale

Grade Points Percent
A 900-1000 90-100%
B 800-899 80-89%
C 700-799 70-79%
D 600-699 60-69%
F 0-599 0-59%

Grade Weights

Assignment Category Points Percent
Discussions (18) 350 35%
Papers (3) 200 20%
Midterm Exam (1) 200 20%
Final Exam (1) 250 25%
Total 1000 100%

  Schedule of Due Dates

Week 1

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 1 10 Wednesday/Friday
Discussion 2 20 Sunday
Discussion 3 20
Dropbox Assignment 1 50

Week 2

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 4 20 Wednesday/Friday
Discussion 5 20 Sunday
Proctor Information N/A

Week 3

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 6 20 Wednesday/Friday
Discussion 7 20 Thursday/Saturday
Discussion 8 20 Sunday

Week 4

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 9 20 Wednesday/Friday
Discussion 10 20 Sunday
Midterm Exam 200

Week 5

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 11 20 Wednesday/Friday
Discussion 12 20 Sunday
Dropbox Assignment 2: “Whiteness: The Power of Privilege” 50

Week 6

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 13 20 Wednesday/Friday
Discussion 14 20 Sunday

Week 7

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 15 20 Wednesday/Friday
Discussion 16 20 Sunday
Dropbox Assignment 3 - Evaluating Educational Inequality along Racial Lines 100

Week 8

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 17 20 Wednesday/Friday
Discussion 18 20 Saturday
Final Exam 250
Total Points: 1000

  Assignment Overview

Discussion postings

Discussion postings should be complete by their respective deadlines (most are Wednesday and Sunday at midnight, however some weeks ask for three postings) of each assigned week.  Discussion postings will be graded according to the Discussion Rubric in the Content.  

You are expected to read and respond to colleagues’ and instructor’s posts.  To participate in discussions means more than simply posting your answer to the discussion question and moving on.  It means reading what others think about the question, and responding to them.  “Good post” is not considered participation and will not count as credit.  Students must post to a minimum of two classmates on each discussion for full credit.

As you might expect, we will have many discussions on varying perspectives of race as well as other issues in the next eight weeks.  Please remember that this is an academic setting, and that all responses must be premised on sociological facts and theories.  Please remember that our discussions are to learn how to deconstruct many of these issues on race in this academic setting; therefore, all perspectives are welcome.  This is how we will educate ourselves and pass along this information to others. 

Dropbox Assignments

Three writing assignments will be assessed based on analytical and critical thinking skills, completeness, correct spelling, correct formatting and citations, and neatness.  These writing assignments will be graded according to the rubric below.  I will not accept later assignments unless approved by me before the due date of the assignment or documentation.


There will be a midterm and a final exam.  Each exam will consist of multiple-choice, true/false, and essay questions.  You will have 120 minutes to complete the exams.  Both exams will be proctored and may be found under Quizzes.

  Course Outline

Click on each week to view details about the activities scheduled for that week.

Fox: Introduction, Chapters 1-2

Rothenberg: Introduction, Part 1: “Whiteness: The Power of Invisibility” Chapters 3 and 4
Farley: Chapter 1.

Read the Plagiarism Tutorial found in our Content section. This will give you information on how to write for our college class and avoid getting a "0" on a paper that you have diligently written. After reading the Plagiarism Tutorial, please take the Plagiarism Quiz found in our Quizzes section. You may take this Quiz as often as you would like. Please note that you will not have access to the Dropbox to submit your first paper, “Your Story of Race,” until you have viewed the Tutorial and taken the Plagiarism Quiz. You must pass the Quiz with 100%. You must take the Quiz through our course to allow you to submit your first writing assignment, not CougarTrack. The Tutorial and the Quiz are both requirements regardless of your performance in previous courses.
Discussion 1
Introduce yourself in the "Introductions" topic. Please give us more than your name. Include your profession; hobbies, your interest in sociology, and any other pertinent information that will help us get to know one another.Comment on what you would like to discover in the next 8 weeks.Please post your response in the appropriate topic by midnight Wednesday. Secondary responses are due Friday at midnight.
Discussion 2
Understanding Prejudice: Take the Understanding Prejudice survey. (The link may be found in the Content section.) This is intended as a baseline survey to help you explore your perspectives on prejudice, stereotyping, and discrimination.  Reflect on some concept presented in one of our introductory readings or the baseline survey that surprised you (meaning, this was something you had never thought about). Please post your answers and responses by Sunday at midnight.
Discussion 3
What does it mean to say that race is an idea, not a fact? What does it mean to say that race has been socially and politically constructed?Provide an example of the social construction of race. Do some social and natural scientists question whether the term race is a meaningful concept? This is a key idea of the class, so be sure to understand this!! Please post your answers and responses by Sunday at midnight.
Dropbox Assignment 1

In this first week, we are seeking to "tell our story of race."
1. Reflect on where you come from in racial/ethnic terms. This is NOT a genealogy paper.
2. Think about and write about what life experiences have informed your racial attitudes and beliefs.
3. Continue by reflecting on your level of interaction with members of other racial/ethnic groups (or lack thereof).
4. What about your life enabled you to interact with members of different racial/ethnic groups?
5. Finally, what aspects of your life held back such interactions with members of different racial/ethnic groups?

This paper is expected to be 2-3 pages in length, double-spaced.
You will not have access to the Dropbox to submit your first paper, “Your Story of Race,” until you have viewed the Tutorial and taken the Plagiarism Quiz and passed with 100%. This paper is due by midnight Sunday, so please plan accordingly.

Fox: Chapters 3-7
Rothenberg: Part 2: “Whiteness: The Power of the Past” Chapters 2, 4, 5, and 8
Discussion 4
In “The Chinese Exclusion Example” by Erika Lee, Lee argues that new Asian immigrants were seen as a threat to the United States because of their race and their labor. Discuss how Asians were perceived by nativists, and why the Chinese were seen as racially threatening. Next, compare the ideas behind this threat as it persists today in the selection entitled“Neither Black nor White” by Angelo N. Ancheta. Use support from both essays to explain how the racialization of Chinese immigrants provided a model for evaluating other immigrants from Asia, Mexico, and Southern Europe. Please post by midnight on Wednesday. Secondary responses are due Friday at midnight.
Discussion 5
Think about where you fit in terms of Helms’ stages of racial identity development (Chapters 6 and 7 of the Fox text). Why do you find yourself in that particular stage (what life experience has contributed or not contributed to your racial identity development)? Please post your answers and responses by Sunday at midnight.
Proctor Information
Submit your proctor form to the appropriate Dropbox folder by the end of the week. Remember to “Save” the form before placing it in Dropbox. See the Content area for more information.
Farley:  Chapters 2- 4
Discussion 6
Go to the Project Implicit Website and take one of the online tests (under the Demonstration or Research page). (The link may be found in the Content section.)  Which online test did you take?  What did you learn about yourself?  Do you think that this test is a valid indicator of subtle prejudices?  Why or why not?  Then identify and explain one of the five approaches to reducing prejudice in the Farley text that could be effective in reducing these subtle prejudices.  Please post by Wednesday at midnight. Secondary responses are due Friday at midnight.
Discussion 7
Identify, then compare and contrast the sociological perspectives on majority-minority relations (the functionalist or order perspective and the conflict perspective). How do these two major sociological perspectives apply to the study of race relations differ from one another?Which perspective resonates more true to you? Why? What life experiences do you have that support either of these theoretical perspectives on majority-minority relations? Please describe the theoretical perspective you are reflecting on because this will help you and your classmates to learn them (in other words, do not simply respond to the order or conflict perspective without defining it first). Please post by Thursday at midnight. Secondary responses are due Saturday at midnight.
Discussion 8
Many factors contribute to a life of poverty. Visit the interview with William Justice Wilson provided in the course Content. Using Wilson and Farley, identify three reasons why family structure or family type may be an important cause of high rates of poverty among minorities. Then, identify three reasons why family structure or family type may not be an important cause of high rates of poverty among minorities.Finally, what are your thoughts on how these factors may (or may not) lead to poverty that cycle into the next generation? Please post your answers and responses by Sunday at midnight.
Farley: Chapters 5-8
Discussion 9
Visit the U.S. History website and read The Peculiar Institution. (The link may be found in the Content section.) Choose three narratives from the Slave Clips to read and read the commentary on the Native American Trail of Tears. (The link may be found in the Content section.) Compare the Indian reservations and slave plantations and post your comment. How does this help you understand the exploitation of minorities? Please post by Wednesday at midnight.Secondary responses are due Friday at midnight.
Discussion 10
In your opinion, what role did the Civil Rights Movement play in the emergence in the 1960s of similar social movements among Mexican Americans, American Indians, or other groups? Please post your answers and responses by Sunday at midnight.
Midterm Exam
You must take your midterm exam (with an approved proctor) between Tuesday and Sunday of this week.  This exam will employ multiple-choice, true/false, and essay questions.  Each Columbia College site has its own hours and methods for handling proctoring. Please be informed of their hours so that you can get your exam completed between Tuesday and Sunday of this week.      

Farley: Chapters 9 – 10

Rothenberg: Part 3: “Whiteness: The Power of Privilege” Chapters 3, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9

Discussion 11
How do comparisons of race and ethnic relations among different countries around the world support the view that colonization is a major cause of inequality and conflict along the lines of race or ethnicity? Provide specific examples to support your argument from the Farley text. Please post by Wednesday at midnight. Secondary responses are due Friday at midnight.
Discussion 12
View the video “Tim Wise and the Pathology of White Privilege.” (The link may be found in the Content section.) According to Wise, what are the race-related issues?How does white privilege affect both those who have it and those who do not? Please post your answers and responses by Sunday at midnight.
Dropbox Assignment 2: “Whiteness: The Power of Privilege”
After reading the assigned chapters in Part 3 of the Rothenberg text, write a paper that discusses the phrase ‘white privilege’ as it relates to societies and to you. This paper must use support from all six essays (McIntosh, Wise, Shams, DiAngelo, Graham, and Dyson) to identify and evaluate the objectives noted below.
1. Define privilege. According to the authors, what practice(s) create white privilege? What does it mean to claim that whiteness is privileged and normalized in contemporary U.S. society?

2. Explore the meaning of the invisibility of privilege. Is this invisibility sustained in modern societies? If so, how is it sustained and by whom?
3. Discuss the relationship between class and race in the United States. Do you believe the economic system of capitalism encourages American citizens to take advantage of these privileges? Why, or why not? How might these privileges have played a role in how you were raised? Provide examples in your life that suggests or dispels this privilege of whiteness.

This paper is worth 50 points and must be 3-4 pages in length, double-spaced. You do not need to provide an abstract for this paper; however, you must include citations from each of the essays and provide a Reference List correctly formatted in APA style. Please refer to the Stafford Library Resources if you are unfamiliar with this format. Due date: Sunday at midnight.

Farley: Chapters 11 - 12

Betancourt, J, and Dogra, N. (2006). Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Health Care. Alliance for Health Reform. Web.  (In course Content).

Discussion 13
Compare the Farley text to the article from the Alliance for Health Reform. (The link may be found in the Content section.) Were you aware of racial and/or ethnic discrimination in this sphere prior to this week’s readings? If so, how were you made aware? If not, why do you think you were unaware? To what extent do you think racial and ethnic discrimination within the economic and health care systems is intentional? If you see it as intentional, why would it be so? If you view it as unintentional, why do you think it is ongoing? Please post your answer by Wednesday at midnight. Secondary responses are due Friday at midnight.
Discussion 14
Comment on the theories attempting to explain economic inequality that you read in the Farley text. Pick one of the three theoretical explanations for racial inequality in the economic sphere. Explain it thoroughly. What are the strengths and weaknesses of this explanation (not your opinion; this is found in the text). Please post your answers and responses by Sunday at midnight.
Course Evaluation
Please evaluate the course. You will have an opportunity to evaluate the course near the end of the session. A link sent to your CougarMail will allow you to access the evaluation. Please note that these evaluations are provided so that I can improve the course, find out what students perceive to be its strengths and weaknesses, and in general assess the success of the course. Please do take the time to fill this out.
Farley: Chapters 13 -14
Discussion 15
Which of the approaches in the Farley text do you think is the best for resolving problems of majority-minority inequality in education? Why do you think it is the best approach? Provide details to demonstrate that you have read the Farley chapters thoroughly and understand them. Please post by Wednesday at midnight. Secondary responses are due Friday at midnight.
Discussion 16
Explore the ways that the legal system might do a better job of protecting the rights of minorities and preventing them from becoming victims of unscrupulous business practices. Next, describe ways in which the legal system continues to work that has the effect of discrimination on the basis of race and class. What would it take to create a legal system that does not discriminate in business practices, race and class? Please post your answers and responses by Sunday at midnight.
Dropbox Assignment 3 - Evaluating Educational Inequality along Racial Lines

1. Discuss the two differing theories on the role of education (discussed in the Farley text).
2. Analyze the role funding plays in educational inequality along racial lines and the ways cultural and behavioral factors influence the education of minorities (this includes a discussion of the cultural deprivation theory and the cultural bias theory).
3. Reflect on what you have learned in this chapter by analyzing America's cultural diversity in terms of race, gender, ethnicity, and class. How should these inequities be addressed? Assume you are going to be a teacher (many of you are). How do you inspire children who do not have the necessary resources in their homes, who go to under-funded schools, or who attend schools that do not celebrate their heritage? We should not simply "write off" such children. We have an obligation to reach them. How would you do it?
4. Using the resources in the back of the Fox book, describe one anti-racist tool that you would implement in this future (or fictional) classroom.

This final paper of the semester is worth 100 points; thus, it carries more weight than the previous two. This paper is to be 4-6 pages in length, with proper citations, and needs to be well written for full credit. You do not have to include an abstract or running heads. Be sure you properly cite sources within the body of your text and correctly format the reference page. These things are essential to college level writing. This paper is due Sunday at midnight.

Farley: Chapter 15-16
Discussion 17
View LZ Granderson’s presentation, The Myth of the Gay Agenda. (The link may be found in the Content section.) Next, visit the Human Rights Campaign website (This link is also found in the course Content.) and choose one of the resources from the website to explore in more depth. Is the information in the Granderson’s webcast and the Human Rights Campaign new to you? If so, what is new to you? How do you weave the information in Granderson’s webcast and the reading into an understanding of LGBT issues? Does this information dispel some of the inconsistencies and stereotypes that seem to exist for LGBTs? Identify these issues and summarize those that you consider to be the most important. Please post your answer by Wednesday at midnight. Secondary responses are due Friday at midnight.
Discussion 18
Define affirmative action and describe the two views: reverse discrimination/racism and undoing discrimination/racism. How effective have affirmative action policies been for African Americans? For women? (Use evidence from your text to answer this question). Based upon the information presented in the text, should affirmative action policies be abolished or continued? Why? Are there other alternatives to equal opportunity? Support your answer. I don't want biases, personal anecdotes, or simplistic thinking here. In order to earn full credit in this post, you will need to show thorough knowledge of the arguments made in the Farley text. Please post your answers and responses by Saturday at midnight.
Final Exam
You must take a proctored final exam. The proctor must have been approved by the instructor by week 2 of the course; unless you inform me otherwise, I will assume you will be using the same proctor as you did for your midterm. The final exam will be multiple-choice, true/false and essay questions. Exams need to be taken between Tuesday and Saturday of this week.

  Course Policies

Student Conduct

All Columbia College students, whether enrolled in a land-based or online course, are responsible for behaving in a manner consistent with Columbia College's Student Conduct Code and Acceptable Use Policy. Students violating these policies will be referred to the office of Student Affairs and/or the office of Academic Affairs for possible disciplinary action. The Student Code of Conduct and the Computer Use Policy for students can be found in the Columbia College Student Handbook. The Handbook is available online; you can also obtain a copy by calling the Student Affairs office (Campus Life) at 573-875-7400. The teacher maintains the right to manage a positive learning environment, and all students must adhere to the conventions of online etiquette.


Your grade will be based in large part on the originality of your ideas and your written presentation of these ideas. Presenting the words, ideas, or expression of another in any form as your own is plagiarism. Students who fail to properly give credit for information contained in their written work (papers, journals, exams, etc.) are violating the intellectual property rights of the original author. For proper citation of the original authors, you should reference the appropriate publication manual for your degree program or course (APA, MLA, etc.). Violations are taken seriously in higher education and may result in a failing grade on the assignment, a grade of "F" for the course, or dismissal from the College.

Collaboration conducted between students without prior permission from the instructor is considered plagiarism and will be treated as such. Spouses and roommates taking the same course should be particularly careful.

All required papers may be submitted for textual similarity review to Turnitin.com for the detection of plagiarism. All submitted papers may be included in the Turnitin.com reference database for the purpose of detecting plagiarism. This service is subject to the Terms and Conditions of Use posted on the Turnitin.com site.


There will be no discrimination on the basis of sex, race, color, national origin, sexual orientation, religion, ideology, political affiliation, veteran status, age, physical handicap, or marital status.

Student Accessibility Resources

Students with documented disabilities who may need academic services for this course are required to register with the office of Student Accessibility Resources. Until the student has been cleared through this office, accommodations do not have to be granted. If you are a student who has a documented disability, it is important for you to read the entire syllabus as soon as possible. The structure or the content of the course may make an accommodation not feasible. Student Accessibility Resources is located in Student Affairs in AHSC 215 and can be reached by phone at (573) 875-7626 or email at sar@ccis.edu.

Online Participation

You are expected to read the assigned texts and participate in the discussions and other course activities each week. Assignments should be posted by the due dates stated on the grading schedule in your syllabus. If an emergency arises that prevents you from participating in class, please let your instructor know as soon as possible.

Attendance Policy

Attendance for a week will be counted as having submitted any assigned activity for which points are earned. Attendance for the week is based upon the date work is submitted. A class week is defined as the period of time between Monday and Sunday (except for week 8, when the work and the course will end on Saturday at midnight.) The course and system deadlines are based on the Central Time Zone.

Cougar Email

All students are provided a CougarMail account when they enroll in classes at Columbia College. You are responsible for monitoring email from that account for important messages from the College and from your instructor. You may forward your Cougar email account to another account; however, the College cannot be held responsible for breaches in security or service interruptions with other email providers.

Students should use email for private messages to the instructor and other students. The class discussions are for public messages so the class members can each see what others have to say about any given topic and respond.

Late Assignment Policy

An online class requires regular participation and a commitment to your instructor and your classmates to regularly engage in the reading, discussion and writing assignments. Although most of the online communication for this course is asynchronous, you must be able to commit to the schedule of work for the class for the next eight weeks. You must keep up with the schedule of reading and writing to successfully complete the class.

No late discussion posts will be accepted.

Because assignments are organized on a weekly basis, and an eight-week online course is very fast paced, all late assignments will be subject to tardiness penalties. Late dropbox assignments will be subject to a 5-point reduction for each late day. No late assignments will be accepted without extenuating circumstances beyond the control of the student and with instructor notification prior to the due date (Columbia College Catalog).  All course work and assignments must be completed by 11:59 p.m. CT Saturday of Week 8, the last day of the session.

Course Evaluation

You will have an opportunity to evaluate the course near the end of the session. A link will be sent to your CougarMail that will allow you to access the evaluation. Be assured that the evaluations are anonymous and that your instructor will not be able to see them until after final grades are submitted.

Proctor Policy

Students taking courses that require proctored exams must submit their completed proctor request forms to their instructors by the end of the second week of the session. Proctors located at Columbia College campuses are automatically approved. The use of ProctorU services is also automatically approved. The instructor of each course will consider any other choice of proctor for approval or denial. Additional proctor choices the instructor will consider include: public librarians, high school or college instructors, high school or college counseling services, commanding officers, education service officers, and other proctoring services. Personal friends, family members, athletic coaches and direct supervisors are not acceptable.

  Additional Resources

Orientation for New Students

This course is offered online, using course management software provided by Desire2Learn and Columbia College. The course user guide provides details about taking an online course at Columbia College. You may also want to visit the course demonstration to view a sample course before this one opens.

Technical Support

If you have problems accessing the course or posting your assignments, contact your instructor, the Columbia College Helpdesk, or the D2L Helpdesk for assistance. Contact information is also available within the online course environment.

Online Tutoring

Smarthinking is a free online tutoring service available to all Columbia College students. Smarthinking provides real-time online tutoring and homework help for Math, English, and Writing. Smarthinking also provides access to live tutorials in writing and math, as well as a full range of study resources, including writing manuals, sample problems, and study skills manuals. You can access the service from wherever you have a connection to the Internet. I encourage you to take advantage of this free service provided by the college.

Access Smarthinking through CougarTrack under Students -> Academics -> Academic Resources.