Majors & Minors

Race & Ethnicity Studies


Melissa Johnson

Professor and Chair

Melissa Johnson

Professor and Chair

The Race and Ethnicity Studies Program offers a minor designed to examine race and ethnicity as categories of difference and as forms of lived experience, and attends to how these categories intersect and overlap with other forms of difference (such as gender, nation, indigeneity, class, religion, ability, sexuality, etc.).

The minor approaches race and ethnicity as constructs in particular historical contexts from interdisciplinary, comparative, intercultural and transnational perspectives. It also develops a critical awareness of colonial and Eurocentric influences on both the construction of these categories and the scholarly discourse about them. The minor thus provides a critical lens on a variety of historical and contemporary issues and debates generated by specific racial and ethnic formations. At the same time the minor takes note of mobilizations and liberating cultural expressions that have emerged both in response and as alternatives to dominant racial and ethnic structures.


Race & Ethnicity Studies News

Dr. Richard Reddick

Guest Speaker Dr. Richard Reddick Discusses Issues of Equity in Education

Associate Dean of Equity and Community Outreach the University of Texas at Austin’s College of Education gave insight into the role of archival deep dives to uncover the racist contexts that create educational environments.

Sevara Sobhani ’20 visited the Shrine of the Báb, a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in Haifa, Israel, during a spiritual pilgrimage in December 2019.

Faith in Diversity

Sevara Sobhani ’20 cherishes how the Bahá’í Faith and the Southwestern community are devoted to inclusivity and independent thinking.

Washington, D.C.

Southwestern Sumners Scholars Explore Internships in DC

The Hatton W. Sumners Scholars Program creates high-impact experiences for SU’s best and brightest.



Race & Ethnicity Studies Events

Christopher Carter, The Spirit of Soul Food (University of Illinois Press, December 2021)

Environmental Studies Symposium Keynote and Food Tasting, Rev. Christopher Carter, Ph.D., “The Spirit of Soul Food: Race, Faith, and Food Justice”

Soul food has played a critical role in preserving Black history, community, and culinary genius. It is also a response to–and marker of–centuries of food injustice. Given the harm that our food production system inflicts upon Black people, what should soul food look like today?

Christopher Carter’s answer to that question merges a history of Black American foodways with a Christian ethical response to food injustice. Carter reflects on how people of color can eat in a way that reflects their cultural identities while remaining true to the principles of compassion, love, justice, and solidarity with the marginalized.

Accompanying the lecture will be three different soul foods, based on Dr. Carter’s recipes, that attendees will share: red beans and rice, vegan cornbread, and peach crisp.

Christopher Carter is an assistant professor of theology and religious studies at the University of San Diego. He is also a pastor within the United Methodist Church and has served churches in Battle Creek, Michigan, and in Torrance and Compton, California.