Law Schedule of Classes

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212 sec. 001 - Critical Theory and Social Science Methods (Fall 2024)

Instructor: Osagie K Obasogie  (view instructor's teaching evaluations - degree students only)
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Units: 3
Grading Designation: Graded
Mode of Instruction: In-Person


Th 2:00 PM - 4:59 PM
Location: Berkeley Way West 1104
From August 29, 2024
To November 21, 2024

Course Start: August 29, 2024
Course End: November 21, 2024
Class Number: 32543

Enrollment info:
Enrolled: 9
Waitlisted: 0
Enroll Limit: 12
As of: 06/24 02:12 PM


Social science research on identity and vulnerable populations is at a critical moment. For example, race is, on one hand, theorized as a social construction -- meaning that the social sciences have largely rejected claims that race reflects natural or biological differences and is instead thought to be a product of social, economic, and political forces. Yet, on the other hand, this theoretical approach is underutilized in social scientists’ empirical research on race, where race is often measured as if it is a ‘real’ or natural entity. This ‘mismatch’ between theory and methods produces substantial tension in social science research and limits scholars’ ability to offer clear insights into the role of race and other traits in understanding social and health outcomes.

This course will examine this tension, its adverse impact on social science research, and explore ways to develop methodological approaches to race and other markers of human difference that blend traditional empirical methods with critical theoretical traditions, e.g. critical race theory, feminist theory, disability theory, queer theory, and others. Emphasis will be placed on understanding the implications for research in the health sciences.

Requirements Satisfaction:

Units from this class count towards the J.D. Race and Law Requirement.

The Race and Law Requirement applies to the class of 2026 and beyond.

Exam Notes: (P) Final paper  
Course Category: Jurisprudence and Social Policy (JSP)
This course is listed in the following sub-categories:
Race and Law

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