Skip to content Skip to navigation


WHO WE BE, IDA Spring Course
Course Description
Over the past half-century, the U.S. has seen profound demographic and cultural change. But racial progress still seems distant. We remain a nation divided. Resegregation is the norm. The culture wars flare as hot as ever. This course examines visual culture—particularly images, works, and ideas in the contemporary arts, justice movements, and popular culture from the Watts uprising to #BlackLivesMatter, from multiculturalism through hip-hop to the successes and frustrations of “post-identity” art. How do Americans see race now? Do we see each other any more clearly than before?
Events and Exhibition Discription— 
This special course features visits by 3 MacArthur “geniuses”, the new head of the Brooklyn Museum, and some of the most important artists and thinkers currently working in the culture. Presented in conjunction with a special exhibition “Who We Be” at the Cantor Center for the Arts, “Who We Be”, March 30-June 27, Lynn Krywick Gibbons Galley
Weekly Course/Events Schedule
March 30 Seeing America
Lecture by Jeff Chang and Jerome Reyes
Live recording of class 1:
April 6 Bumrush The Show: The Rise, Fall, and Afterlife of Multiculturalism
Lecture by Jeff Chang and Jerome Reyes
Live recording of class 2:
April 13 Diversity or Equity: Demographics, Art and Culture, and ‘The Race Conversation’
With Carrie Mae Weems, Roberta Uno, Liz Medicine Crow, and Amalia Mesa-Bains
Live recording of class 3:
April 20 The St. Clair Drake Memorial Lecture in African & African American Studies
With Nate Parker (“Birth Of A Nation”)
Live recording of St. Clair Drake Memorial Lecture:
April 27 Brown Broken Down: Latinx Art & Subjectivity Today
Curated by Rubén Martínez with Marcos Ramirez ERRE, Raquel Gutíerrez, Shizu Saldomando, Rafa Esparza
 Live recording of class 5:
May 4 “We’ve Already Won”: Picturing Change and New Justice Movements
With Damon Davis, Julio Salgado, Christian Frock
 Live recording of class 6:
May 11 Rethinking the Contemporary Arts Institution
With Anne Pasternak (Limited Seating)
 Recording not yet posted
May 18 What Does Post-Identity Mean?
With Jonathan Calm, Jakeya Caruthers, Ellen Tani, Jerome Reyes
Live recording of class 8:
May 25 Who Are We Becoming?: Arts Practice Toward A New America
With Rick Lowe, Marc Bamuthi Joseph, Favianna Rodriguez
Live recording of class 9:
June 1 Dreaming America
Lecture by Jeff Chang and Jerome Reyes
 Recording not yet posted
Co-sponsored by Stanford Arts and the “Race In The Post-Obama Era Initiative”, which is generously supported by The President’s Office and the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education (VPUE), Graduate School of Education (GSE), Center for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity (CCSRE), Clayman Institute for Gender Research, Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education (SCOPE), Center for Race, Ethnicity, and Language (CREAL), Department of Anthropology, Department of History, American Studies, Institute on the Politics of Inequality, Race & Ethnicity (InsPIRES), Chicana/o-Latina/o Studies, Department of English, Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies (FGSS), Modern Thought & Literature, Religious Studies, Theatre and Performance Studies, and the Stanford Humanities Center.