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Where Do You Come From?, First-Year Seminar--American History (102-6-1)


Geraldo L Cadava
Harris Hall - Room 210
Originally from Tucson, Arizona, Professor Cadava has lived in Chicago for about 15 years--longer than he has lived anywhere else. He teaches courses on Latino, immigration, and borderlands history. He has written two books: "Standing On Common Ground," about the Arizona-Sonora border, and "The Hispanic Republican," about, well, Hispanic Republicans.

Meeting Info

University Hall 318: Tues, Thurs, 3:30PM - 4:50PM

Overview of class

The past decade has seen an explosion of Ancestry-DNA tests--all over the world, but particularly in the United States. This first-year seminar will explore the reasons for the recent explosion, but will also examine the long history of Ancestry-DNA testing and genealogical research broadly. Now and in the past, the inclination to want to learn more about our personal pasts has been full of cultural and political meaning. Writing assignments will require you to analyze the larger history of Ancestry-DNA testing, as well as your own personal history. Getting an Ancestry-DNA test is certainly not required, but is certainly permissible, if you're interested. We will discuss the other ways you can do genealogical research besides spitting in a tube!

Learning Objectives

Critical reading and thinking skills; writing analytically and clearly; learning how to have thoughtful discussions, grounded in evidence, about important cultural and political issues.

Evaluation Method

Three five-page essays (60 percent of grade, 20 percent each); Participation (40 percent, and participation includes reading, preparation, discussion, and your engagement with editing and revision exercises)

Class Materials (Required)

All the assigned readings will be uploaded on Canvas

Class Notes

History Area(s) of Concentration: Americas

Class Attributes

WCAS First-Year Seminar

Enrollment Requirements

Enrollment Requirements: Reserved for First Year & Sophomore only
Add Consent: Department Consent Required
Drop Consent: Department Consent Required