Choose one of the following two questions and respond in 800-1000 words (3-4 pag

by | Feb 24, 2022 | Sociology

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Choose one of the following two questions and respond in 800-1000 words (3-4 pages). Responses
should be based on the assigned readings, podcasts, and films and supported by details and ideas
from the lectures.
Option 1
Although Enlightenment thinkers argued that liberty was a natural human right and that reason and
scientific knowledge were responsible for human progress, these thinkers likewise laid the
foundations for a scientific racism that provided the rationale for slavery and condemned millions of
Black folks to unfreedom.
Explain how, since the conjoined birth of the Enlightenment and chattel slavery, freedom has been a
constant struggle for Black folks. Discuss, in particular, how Black folks’ struggles for liberation have
involved both acts of rebellion and acts of radical thinking, through which they developed their own
critical concepts for understanding a world defined by systemic racism. Use seven of the following:
• Natasha Piñon, “What You Need to Know About Systemic Racism” (cite as: Bonilla-Silva)
• Peter Hamilton, The Enlightenment and the Birth of Social Science”
• Laurent Dubois, “Atlantic Freedoms: Haiti, Not the US or France, Was Where the Assertion of
Human Rights Reached Its Defining Climax in the Age of Revolution” (cite as: L. Du Bois)
• W.E.B. Du Bois, “Our Spiritual Strivings” (cite as: Du Bois-Strivings)
• James Baldwin, “My Dungeon Shook”
• Sylvia Wynter, “No Humans Involved: An Open Letter To My Colleagues”
• “Ruth Wilson Gilmore Makes the Case for Abolition” (interview) or “Scholar Robin D.G.
Kelley on How Today’s Abolitionist Movement Can Fundamentally Change the Country?”
(interview)
• Deborah Douglas, Angelique Chrisafis and Aamna Mohdin, “One Year On, How George
Floyd’s Murder Has Changed the World”
Option 2
Explain how capitalism, which according to Cedric Robinson, is racial since its origins in Europe and
expanded to the Americas and other parts of the world through processes of dispossession,
colonialism and slavery, has reproduced itself over time through the ongoing racialization and
dispossession of Black folks and other peoples of Color within and beyond Europe and the Americas.
Be sure to address chattel slavery, lynching, criminalization, incarceration, and imperial wars as
modes through which racial capitalism has operated. Use seven of the following:
• Robin D.G. Kelley, “What Did Cedric Robinson Mean by Racial Capitalism?” (citation:
Robinson)
• Sven Beckert, “Slavery and Capitalism”
• Ida B. Wells, “Lynching at the Curve”
• W.E.B. Du Bois, “The Souls of White Folks” (cite as: Du Bois-Strivings)

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