ES 517: Diversity and Coalition Buildling

2008-02-04 -

Meeting Dates/Times Arranged: Fridays, 8:00 – 11:00 am, January 25, February 8, March 7 & 28, May 2 & 9; Saturdays & Sundays, February 16 & 17 and April 5 & 6, 9:00 am – 4:00 pm


52106 (for web registration)









Spring 2008

Meeting Schedule:



Competency Areas: EAO – Required; CB, EE, Cert, IND & RMC – Elective
Restricted to EAO students December 4 – 14; open to all ES students after December 14.

Historically, social movements have been strongest when they involve large numbers of people who unite across social barriers such as race, class, and gender for a common purpose. Social movements are weakest, however, when the prejudices and power relationships of the larger society remain unchallenged within their own organizations. This situation often leaves environmental movements vulnerable to 147divide and conquer148 strategies by power-holders and reduces the creativity and effectiveness of environmental organizations by marginalizing the voices, insights, and potential contributions of women, people of color, working-class activists, or ethnic and religious minorities. Now, more than ever, building an environmental movement based on solid working relationships, a spirit of trust, shared interest, and solidarity across the social boundaries of race, gender, class, geography, and culture is a prerequisite for lasting, democratic transformation. This class will focus on both theory and practice with a particular emphasis on: 1) understanding the dynamics of social oppression; 2) building effective relationships across difference; and 3) addressing power dynamics as well as the other challenges in creating diverse organizations and effective coalitions.