University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota

Workshop on Race and Pedagogy

Thursday November 30 and Friday December 1, 2006


The aim of this workshop, organized by the Science/Nature/Culture collaborative, is to engage scholars who work and/or teach on issues related to race. Our hope is to facilitate conversation across the university on the complexities of teaching about race. Workshop presenters will speak on the difficulties and successes of teaching matters relating to race and ethnicity in the university classroom. Since the intent of the event is to facilitate conversation, ample time will be provided for the audience and presenters to engage in discussion. It is our hope that this workshop will spawn interests in interdisciplinary teaching on race and ethnicity throughout the University of Minnesota.


The workshop will begin with a keynote address by Michael Omi on the evening of November 30. During the day on Friday December 1 there will be two themed discussions that build from brief presentations by faculty from throughout the University of Minnesota system and neighboring universities. The themes for these discussions are “Histories and Race,” and “Race and the Sciences.”Sandra Soo-Jin Lee will close the workshop with a plenary talk on the afternoon of December 1.


All events are in 140 Nolte Center

The Contradictions of Colorblindness:  Race and Its Discontents
Keynote Address by Michael Omi
Thursday, November 30, 7:00 p.m.

Michael Omi is Associate Professor and former Chair of Ethnic Studies at the University of California at Berkeley. The co-author of Racial Formation in the United States, Professor Omi’s groundbreaking work has transformed how we understand the social and historical forces that give race its changing meanings over time and place. He has written extensively on racial theory and politics, Asian Americans and racial stratification, racial and ethnic categories and the U.S. Census, and both racist and anti-racist social movements.

Histories and Race
Panel Discussion
Friday, December 1, 9:30-11:30 a.m.

• Rose Brewer, African American and African Studies, University of Minnesota. Professor Brewer’s specialties include the intersection of economy, culture and Black family life; Black women’s studies; race, class and gender; social transformation; and critical theory.

•  Karen Ho, Anthropology, University of Minnesota. Professor Ho’s research and teaching focus on the political economy of global finance, race in American culture, and feminist and ethnographic approaches to the study of culture.

•  Keith Mayes, African American and African Studies, University of Minnesota. Professor Mayes’s research and teaching include African American twentieth-century history; Black nationalist politics of the 1960s and 1970s; African American rituals; holidays, and culture; and African American public history.

•  Richard Martinez, Chicano Studies, University of Minnesota. Professor Martinez’s research areas include group relations, urban studies, and intersections of race and religion; his teaching areas include immigration and politics.

•  Tom Romero, Hamline University School of Law. Professor Romero’s primary teaching and research foci are in the areas of legal history, race and law, and property.

Race and the Sciences
Panel Discussion
Friday, December 1, 1:30-3:30 p.m.

• Margaret Moss, School of Nursing, University of Minnesota. Professor Moss’s research and teaching focus on ethnogeriatrics, American Indian aging, and problem and policy innovations in elder care for Indian elders.

• Rhonda Jones-Webb, Epidemiology and Community Health, University of Minnesota. Professor Jones-Webb’s teaching and research concern alcohol epidemiology and policy with a special emphasis on race and social class issues, policy as a prevention strategy, and minority health issues.

 Richard Lee, Psychology, University of Minnesota. Professor Lee’s research focuses on the process and outcome of cultural socialization and how it serves as a protective factor against mental illness for ethnic minorities exposed to various acculturative life stressors.

• Colin Campbell, Pharmacology, University of Minnesota. Professor Campbell is interested in the relationship between nuclear and mitochondrial DNA instability and human pathologies including cancer and aging. He also teaches on bioethics.

• Nimi Singh, Pediatrics and Adolescent Health, University of Minnesota. Professor Singh’s clinical and research interests have focused on disenfranchised youth, including homeless and incarcerated youth, and on the mental health needs of youth in varying socioeconomic and cultural contexts.

Teaching Race in the New Genetics: What is at Stake?
Plenary Address by Sandra Soo-Jin Lee
Friday, December 1, 3:45-5:15 p.m.

Sandra Soo-Jin Lee, Senior Research Scholar, Cultural and Social Anthropology and the Center for Biomedical Ethics, Stanford University, is an anthropologist who studies race, ethnicity and culture in science, technology and biomedicine. Her research programme focuses on the social and scientific meanings of race in human genetic variation research and their implications for understandings of human difference. Dr. Lee has conducted a study on the social and ethical issues related to the DNA sampling of human populations and policies around the use of racial taxonomies by publicly funded cell repositories.

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