Cultural Appropriation (CCEA-UH 1069)

Virtually unknown outside of academic discourse until very recently, the term cultural appropriation has become a commonplace in social and popular media, as activists and public intellectuals have highlighted what they see as problematic uses (or abuses) of cultural symbols, artifacts, or expressive modes connected to marginalized groups. But what exactly is cultural appropriation, and under what circumstances can it be said to constitute a form of exploitation or violence? This course approaches these questions both philosophically and empirically, asking, on the one hand: What is culture, and how can it be “owned” or “stolen”? and on the other: How have practices of adopting or using culture been implicated in processes of social subjugation or marginalization? Course readings are drawn from a range of disciplines across the humanities and social sciences, including cultural anthropology, art theory, music studies, and philosophy. By engaging with a rich corpus of ideas through in-class discussions, oral presentations, and written reflections, students will develop critical perspectives on cultural appropriation as well as the broader concepts of culture, race, and ethnicity.

Core: Cultural Exploration & Analysis (Undergraduate)
4 credits – 15 Weeks

Sections (Fall 2023)

CCEA-UH 1069-000 (16833)
08/29/2023 – 12/15/2023 Mon,Wed
12:00 AM – 2:00 PM (Early afternoon)
at Abu Dhabi
Instructed by Eisenberg, Andrew Jarad