My favorite courses are Introduction to Contemporary Afro-American Society (AAS 151) and Mutual Perceptions of Racial Minorities (AAS 443). The former examines black life over the past 20 years and has a service-learning component, which links course concepts to working at a community agency. The latter course examines relations between people of African, Asian, Latino and Native ancestry, both domestically and internationally, and across time (as far back as 1500 years ago).
Most of my work focuses on factors influencing how close blacks feel toward Asian Americans, Latinos and Native Americans. I have examined how religion, political ideology and economic competition colors these views. Contrary to what researchers typically assert, blacks who consider themselves very religious, pro-black and those who feel that "foreigners" steal their jobs are those MOST likely to feel close to others of color! I've also examined factors that influence black and Hispanic use of emergency rooms (versus alternative health care sites), ethnic variations in how communities create help-networks in caring for their elderly, dimensions of black identity (rebels, elites and mainstream), Afro-Asian identity, and newspaper coverage of relations among groups of color.
Thornton, M. C. 2004. “Race and Multiraciality: Multiracial Challenges to Monoracialism.” In P. Spickard and G. R. Daniels, eds., The Creation and Revision of Racial Thinking: Uncompleted Independence. Notre Dame University Press. Pp. 308-340.
Afro-American Studies 443: Introduction to Contemporary Afro-American Society An introductiory course about the state of black America since the 1980s that takes a sociological approach.
Afro-American Studies 443: Mutual Perceptions of Racial Minorities Through time and space, we examine the quality of interactions between people of African, Asian, Latino and Native heritage both here and internationally.
Afro-American Studies 650: Seminar: Ethnic/Racial Identity Examines black, Asian American and Latino ethnicity.
Coming soon, new courses:
Multiracial People and Families: Examine so-called mixed racial identity, and the nature of families with parents of different racial heritage.
African American and Asian American Families: Compares similarities and difference between these kinds of families, with the emphasis on choices made and received.