The Intersectionality of Policy: Race, Ethnicity, Gender, Class and Immigration Status

Professor: TBD
Units: 0.5
Elective Course (Required for students in the Community-Partnered Policy and Action stream)
Concentration: Social and Behavioral Science


Policy decisions can affect people from different backgrounds disparately—negatively or positively as well as deliberately or inadvertently. Those policy decisions often reflect various forms of power and privilege as well as deep-seated assumptions about race, class and gender identity. Those assumptions, moreover, are often embedded in policy design and implementation, and over time, can take on the imprimatur of accepted truth.

This course reviews some key historical examples from the 19th century to the present involving voting rights, labor force participation, access to education, public relief, and publicly funded healthcare and social services, public finance and labor force participation. We also explore the consequences of and contemporary responses to earlier policy decisions on current concerns about income inequality, law enforcement, and disparate opportunity.