Communication and Culture | Race, Ethnicity, and the Media
C201 | 22097 | Yeidy M. Rivero
Fulfills COAS S&H distribution requirement
Fulfills COAS Culture Studies List A distribution requirement
This course introduces students to the complex relationship between
diverse ethnic groups and their media representations within the
U.S. context. Using history as the main point of departure, we will
examine the cultural, social, and political location of various
ethnic “minorities” including Native Americans, Asian Americans,
African Americans, and Latinos/as, and their media representations,
particularly in film and television. The course is divided into
three sections: (1) Foundations, (2) Ethnic Minorities and
Mainstream Film/TV Representations, and (3) Ethnic Minorities and
their Cultural Spaces. Issues of production, representation, and
interpretation will be considered as a way of understanding who
controls the production of images and how audiences might interpret
• Analyze the ways in which U.S. racial discourses and larger
political, historical, and social processes have informed the
mainstream media representations of ethnic minority groups in
particular historical periods.
• Consider/evaluate how audience segmentation and the
exportation of mainstream television and film products have had an
impact on the representation of specific US ethnic groups.
• Introduce the students to some of the cultural artifacts
produced by ethnic minority groups in order to understand how
independently produced media address specific community-based issues
regarding ethnicity, culture, and identity.
Grading Policy and Class Requirements
Grades will be based on your performance on three exams and two
written assignments. 300 points total.
Exams: There will be three scheduled exams in this course. No make-
up exams will be given. The exams, in the form of short answer and
multiple choice questions, will be derived from class lectures and
First Exam 50 points
Second Exam 100 points
Third Exam 100 points
Two brief written assignments: (5-6 pages each). Papers turned in
after the due dates will be penalized with a two point per day
deduction for every day the paper is late. Separate information
will be provided well before each assignment is due. 25 points each.