About EC 053 A

An examination of the links between race and ethnicity and economic outcomes. Exploration of the definition of race and ethnicity, economic theories of discrimination, stereotyping, legacy impacts, affirmative action, wealth disparities, concepts of identity, and the effect of skin shade.


Open to Degree and CDE students; Cross listed with CRES 096 D; Total combined enrollment: 40

Section Description

This course critically examines the causes and consequences of racial disparities as well as economic policies to address those disparities. Central to this topic is the relationship between group identity and power. We therefore adopt a political economy perspective, which underscores the role of power, often transmitted through public policy, in influencing the economic and social welfare of a group or groups. We investigate racial disparities in various socioeconomic indicators such as education, labor markets, housing, and wealth. We then explore the merits and limitations of various approaches to explaining these persistent disparities. Finally, we explore a variety of policy proposals designed to overcome intergroup disparity by race/ethnicity. While much of the course focuses on the U.S. context, I will at times broaden the discussion to countries outside the US for comparative purposes. The course is divided into four parts: (1) an introduction to the biological and social construction of race and the problem of racial disparity, (2) conservative, liberal and alternative paradigms that explain racial disparity, (3) an examination of racial disparity in education, labor markets, health, and mass incarceration, and (4) affirmative action, reparations, and other policies to address racial disparities.

Course Dates



Lafayette Hall L111 (View Campus Map)


to on Tuesday and Thursday

Important Dates

Note: These dates may change before registration begins.

Note: These dates may not be accurate for select courses during the Summer Session.

Last Day to Add
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Last Day to Withdraw with 50% Refund
Last Day to Withdraw with 25% Refund
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