ER&M majors study the world in order to change it. Founded in 1998, the program provides undergraduates with the methodological and practical tools for leadership in a diverse and dynamic twenty-first century. Students study global change from the bottom up, learning about the histories, contemporary experiences, and cultural imaginations of those who have faced displacement and dispossession in many countries of the world.
Our majors spend time exploring the structural and discursive means by which such populations have been racialized and stigmatized. They think comparatively about the movement of people – refugees, labor migrants, immigrants, and more – across international borders, how those populations engage with new locales, how they remain connected with previous homelands, and how they resist their own minoritization.
We emphasize familiarity with the intellectual traditions and debates surrounding the concepts of indigeneity, ethnicity, nationality, and race; grounding in both the history of migration and its contemporary manifestations; and knowledge of the cultures, structures, and peoples formed by these migrations. Our students often find themselves reading American Indian literature, analyzing African diasporic musical traditions, conducting ethnographic studies within immigrant communities, and undertaking projects that connect various regions of the world. Many have also made community-based learning in New Haven or elsewhere essential to their courses of study, developing interdisciplinary methods that engage theoretical debates while addressing practical, and often immediate, social problems.
While the Ethnicity, Race, and Migration Program urges undergraduates to engage with the multicultural, multiethnic, and multiracial world, we also manage reading groups that gather faculty and graduate students to discuss topics of common interest; a postdoctoral program that has brought new faculty to campus over the last seven years; and various lecture series and conferences that enrich campus discussion about topics in Ethnic Studies, American Indian Studies, and other fields.