JUNIOR SEMINAR: ASIAN AMERICAN POLITICS

Semester: 
Instructor(s): 
Units: 
4
Section: 
4
Number: 
191
CCN: 
21245
Times: 
M 12:00-2:00
Location: 
202 Barrows
Course Description: 

This course will be an intensive, research‐based junior proseminar on the politics of Asians in the
United States. The topic of Asian American politics starts with two apparent paradoxes. First, the
term "Asian American" implies an underlying unity and coherence in the beliefs, behaviors, and
identities of the individuals to whom the term is applied. Yet there is a dizzying diversity of
ethnicities, religions, cultures, languages, and immigration histories embodied by these individuals
under the rubric of "Asian American." Second, one of the bedrock findings in political science is
that political engagement increases with high socioeconomic attainment, and Asian Americans as
a group have achieved vaunted levels of socioeconomic success. Yet by most measures of politics,
Asian Americans appear to be the least participatory racial/ethnic group in the American
electorate.

An exploration of these two paradoxes forms the keystone of this course. We will examine,
through selected readings and directed research, the role of interests, identities, institutions,
ideology, and immigrant context in shaping the political incorporation of Asian Americans. Is there
a "group‐ness" or shared political interests for Asian Americans? Are Asian Americans more like
African Americans today or like white ethnic immigrant‐based groups from the late 19th and early
20th centuries, politically? Does the "under‐participation" of Asians in politics reflect individual
preferences, informational gaps, and immigrant habits? Or do Asian Americans face
institutionalized, structural barriers to access and inclusion? What role do institutions like political
parties and civil society organizations play in the political incorporation of Asian Americans?
 

Prerequisites: 
Students will be able to directly enroll in this junior seminar in Phase 1 as long as they are declared Political Science majors in their junior or senior year (based on year, NOT units) and haven't taken a junior seminar before. 

NOTE:  IF you have taken a junior seminar before, you must wait until Phase 2 to enroll; otherwise, you will be eventually dropped from the seminar.   

Group visibility: 
Public - accessible to all site users