What is race? How does racism impact our sense of self and the communities in which we live? The first part of this class examines the emergence of the modern idea of race, in relation to European expansionism, philosophical ideas of the time, and the development of science. Next, we focus on contemporary conceptions of race and their relations to culture, history, ideology, science, and everyday lived experience. We consider contemporary debates on race and racism in the works of thinkers, writers, artists, and social activists, reflecting on the intersections of race, class, and gender.