Social Justice Studies

Social Justice Studies (SJS)

SJS 300 Introduction to Social Justice Studies

  • Units:3
  • Hours:54 hours LEC
  • Prerequisite:None.
  • Transferable:CSU
  • General Education:AA/AS Area V(b) (effective Summer 2019); AA/AS Area VI (effective Summer 2019)
  • C-ID:C-ID SJS 110 (effective Summer 2019)
  • Catalog Date:June 1, 2019

This interdisciplinary course introduces students to the theoretical and practical foundations of social justice and the social processes that create and resist oppression. It covers the sociology, history, and psychology of oppressions based upon race, ethnicity, class, gender, sexuality, and other group identities in the United States and the corresponding social justice movements for liberation. It investigates how creating and undoing asymmetrical power relations are linked to social structures, institutional processes, and culture. Additionally, it provides a basis for a better understanding of socioeconomic, political, and cultural conditions of key social groups in the United States. Topics include theoretical foundations of social justice and oppression, history and politics of group identity, culture and ideologies, forms of oppression, privilege, and forms of resistance. Field trips may be required.

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  • define the foundational theories within social justice studies.
  • differentiate between oppression and other forms of mistreatment.
  • explain power asymmetry as it is linked to social structure and institutional processes.
  • analyze theories on how identity is created for groups in a society via power, economic, political, and cultural structures.
  • summarize the modern histories and experiences of groups oppressed because of race, ethnicity, class, gender, and sexuality in the United States.
  • compile contributions of oppressed groups to the development of American society.
  • assess the complex intersections and relationships within and across race, ethnicity, socioeconomic class, gender, sexual orientation, and other identities.
  • identify and analyze the role of culture in oppression and in empowerment, including art, film, literature, or music reflecting different groups.
  • understand theories on how and why groups resist.
  • identify struggles for social justice, liberation, and decolonization.
  • apply how privilege and oppression operate in the major institutions of the United States, including education, health care, the economy, and the criminal justice system.

SJS 310 Introduction to LGBTQ Studies

  • Units:3
  • Hours:54 hours LEC
  • Prerequisite:None.
  • Transferable:CSU
  • General Education:AA/AS Area V(b) (effective Summer 2019); AA/AS Area VI (effective Summer 2019)
  • C-ID:C-ID SJS 130 (effective Summer 2019)
  • Catalog Date:June 1, 2019

This course introduces students to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ) studies. It explores how LGBTQ individuals and communities are impacted by various social, cultural, historical, and political factors. Topics include politics of sexuality and sexual identities; forms of oppression including heterosexism, homophobia, and transphobia, as well as resistance to oppression, violence against LGBTQ individuals and communities, and queer activism. This course also includes contemporary issues in families, education, religion, and the law.

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  • analyze the various ways people identify their sexual orientation and/or their gender identity and expression.
  • explore the intersections of homophobia, sexism, heterosexism, transphobia, racism, classism, ageism, ableism and other intersecting identities within the context of LGBTQ political struggles in the United States.
  • assess theories about sexual orientation and gender identity and expression within the context of feminist theory, gender theory, and queer theory.
  • examine the continuous evolution of legal policies and societal views of LGBTQ people on a global level.
  • examine sexual orientation and gender identity within Native American, African American, Chicano/a and Latino/a, Asian American, Pacific Islander, and recent immigrant communities in the United States.
  • identify key individuals and describe their roles and contributions to domestic and international LGBTQ struggles for full human rights.
  • assess the impact of hate crimes on LGBTQ individuals, the LGBTQ community, the community at large, and public policy.
  • research the history of public health policy in the United States as well as internationally to explore the ways that LGBTQ people have consistently suffered under homophobic, biphobic, and transphobic policies.
  • examine the evolution of LGBTQ culture in literature, the media, and the arts.
  • explore the impact of our education system on the ability of LGBTQ individuals and communities to achieve social justice and equity.