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HUM/RLCL 3204: Multicultural Communication

From “political correctness” to “dog-whistling,” from “virtue signaling” to “micro-aggressions,” can there be any doubt that communication itself has become the new focus of our debates about identity? This course examines the shifting norms of multicultural communication in the United States. We explore the expressive forms that have long been part of various groups’ oral traditions, the ever-present possibility of miscommunication between groups, and the shifting norms governing talk about group-differences. Students should expect to engage scholarly and popular works that bring conflicting perspectives to these topics and thus to have their viewpoints challenged in a spirit of civil and mutual truth-seeking.

Why take it?

Students will have the opportunity to learn about how different people encode their ethics and worldviews within the subtleties of their discourse systems, which will benefit them in any career path that involves interaction with people who express themselves through different communicative systems. These skills will lessen the likelihood for miscommunication across cultural lines and improve empathy and cooperation with peers, business partners, and others.

This course is an elective in each of the following Pathways minors:


There are no prerequisites for this course.

This course fulfills Pathways requirements in Reasoning in the Social Sciences and Intercultural and Global Awareness.