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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences : Philosophy

Undergraduate Course: Radical Black Philosophies of Race and Racism (PHIL10216)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course explores the writings of Black Power intellectuals and activists from the mid-20th century in the U.S. and throughout the African diaspora.
Course description This class will explore the philosophical foundations of the Black Power movement and the birth of Black Studies as a discipline in the 1960s. This course is designed to familiarize students with the various philosophical perspectives of the militant civil rights movement and the Black Power movement. It will investigate the various strategies African descended people throughout the Diaspora have offered for dealing with white supremacy, colonialism, and the modern construction of race. Special attention will be paid to how Black Power theorists used philosophy, art, and experience to refute theories of racial inferiority in the U.S. and abroad.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: Mind, Matter and Language (PHIL08014) AND Knowledge and Reality (PHIL08017)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements Students studying on MA Cognitive Science (Humanities) are permitted to take this course without having met the pre-requisites of Mind, Matter and Language (PHIL08014) and Knowledge and Reality (PHIL08014). However, it is advisable that students discuss the suitability of the course with their PT and the course organiser before enrolling.
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  26
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 22, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 174 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Midterm Essay (40%) 1500 words
Final essay (60%) 3000 words
Feedback Guidance will be given in advance of each assignment. This may be in the form of an in-class discussion, a handout, or discussion of a component of the assessed work. Instructor feedback on essay outline and peer feedback provides further formative opportunities ahead of final essay.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Explain influential positions and arguments concerning the development of the Black Power Movement.
  2. Critically assess these positions and arguments, drawing their own reasoned conclusions about their defensibility.
  3. Explain the weakness and strengths of Black militancy's stance against integrationism and capitalism.
  4. Better articulate their own views regarding the colonial history of the racial theories invented by Europe and America and its continuing consequences for humanity in general.
  5. Participate more meaningfully the intellectual history and assumptions of contemporary theories of race and racism.
Reading List
Representative Readings

"White Racism and Black Consciousness," "What is Black Consciousness?" "The Definition of Black Consciousness," and "Black Consciousness and the Quest for a True Humanity," in I Write What I Like by Steve Biko (Johannesburg: Heinemann Publishers, 1978).

Robert F. Williams - Negroes w/Guns (Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1963), and Robert F. Williams, "USA: The Potential of a Minority Revolution," The Los Angeles War Cry (1964):7.

Huey P. Newton, "Revolutionary Suicide: The Way of Liberation," Chapters 1-4, 12, 13-16 in Revolutionary Suicide (New York: Random House, 1973); Huey P. Newton, "The Mind is Flesh," in The Huey P. Newton Reader, David Hillard & Donald Weise (eds.) (New York: Seven Stories Press, 2002); and "Intercommunalism" in In Search for Common Ground (New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 1973).

Kathleen Cleaver, "Women, Power, Revolution," in Liberation, Imagination, and the Black Panther Party (New York: Routledge, 2001), 123-128; and "The Black Scholar interviews Kathleen Cleaver," The Black Scholar 3.4 (1971): 54-59; and Eldridge Cleaver, "Eldridge Cleaver - "On Becoming," "Soul on Ice," and "The Primeval Mitosis," in Soul on Ice (New York: Dell Publishing, 1991).

Kwame Ture and Charles Hamilton, Black Power: The Politics of Liberation (New York: Vintage Books, 1992).

Martin Luther King Jr., "Statement on Black Power to Southern Christian Leadership Conference," October 14, 1966.

Martin Luther King Jr., Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos or Community (Boston: Beacon Press, 2010).

Assata Shakur, Assata: An Autobiography (UK: Zed Books Ltd, 1987).

Linda Lumsden's "Good Mothers with Guns: Framing Black Womanhood in the Black Panther, 1968-1980," Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly 86.4 (2009): 900-922.

Frantz Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth (New York: Grove Press, 2004).

Bobby Seale, Seize the Time (New York: Random House, 1970).

George Jackson, Blood in my Eye (Baltimore: Black Classic Press, 1990).
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Mindsets: Enquiry and lifelong learning; Aspiration and personal development
Skill groups: Personal and intellectual autonomy; Personal effectiveness
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserProf Tommy Curry
Tel: (0131 6)51 3083
Course secretary
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