students studying together with their computers

Core 101: Migration, Displacement, and Cultural Resilience

July 10-August 4, 2023

Open to all incoming Oxy frosh 

FREE—all tuition costs & course materials covered by the Mellon Humanities for Just Communities grant

Course Description

In summer 2023, the HJC summer virtual course will introduce students to the range of ways Humanities disciplines—including Black Studies, History, Media Arts & Culture, Spanish, and Religious Studies—study the migration and displacement of people. Equipped with analytical frames from these fields, students will explore the transformative political activism of people of Asian descent who migrated to the United States from the 19th century to the present; the “Great Migrations” of six million African Americans who left the rural South to move to cities in the North, Midwest, and West in the first half of the 20th century, laying the groundwork for the civil rights movement, the quest for Black power, and ongoing social justice movements; how and why food has shaped the contours and collective identities of migrant communities, as well as the core of migrant rights projects in California; the connections between language, identity, and “home” for speakers of Spanish, Mandarin, and indigenous American languages in Los Angeles; fights for migrant justice and migrant rights in contemporary feminist transnational cinema; and the ways in which displaced peoples today frame their experiences in terms of ancient precedents (such as, odyssey and exodus), providing them with conceptual resources to cope with and navigate their own displacement.  

Enrolling in the summer course is a way for you to get to know other Oxy frosh before arriving on campus and to earn 1-unit toward your Oxy degree for FREE!

Course Structure

The course will be divided into 8 “modules,” 2 per week. Each module will be focused on a different topic and taught by a different faculty member. For each module, students will watch a recorded lecture, complete an assigned reading, write an initial response to the lecture/reading, and engage in a virtual discussion group with the faculty member and classmates. 

Students will need access to the internet in order to stream the lectures and to participate in virtual discussion groups twice a week.

Course Requirements

Students will earn a “Credit” grade for a 1-unit elective if they complete all of the following: 

  • introductory reflection & discussion group
  • complete at least 6 (out of 7) faculty-led modules
  • social media assignment
  • final reflection & discussion group