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2015-2016

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  • Thumbnail for Contemporary Racial Formation in China:  Interactions Between Africans and Local Chinese in Guangzhou, China
    Contemporary Racial Formation in China: Interactions Between Africans and Local Chinese in Guangzhou, China by Gao, Jiumei

    In the 19th century, China encountered the first group of European colonialists and other foreigners. Nationalism, including views on different races, started to form. In the 20th century, ideas of racial categories and how Chinese people belong to the more superior "Yellow race" continued to develop and triggered national pride and rebellion against colonialists. During the Mao-era, nationalism was temporarily replaced with communism, but soon came back after Mao died in 1976. In the 1980s when China opened its market, people of the world, especially of the developing countries, were driven to China for its massive economic opportunities. As a result, Chinese people started to practice ideas of nationalism in their daily interactions with foreigners. This study took an ethnographic approach in order to examine the practice of nationalism in daily life among Chinese residents in Guangzhou, which has the largest African population throughout the country. The study included an explicit review of the historical development of China’s nationalism, along with a one-month ethnographic field research project that utilized interviews with 22 Chinese and 14 Africans in areas with higher concentration of Africans in Guangzhou. The results show that racism against Africans is commonly expressed among the Chinese participants. I found that their rationale of anti-African racism mostly originates from the structure of China’s nationalism that has been building since the 19th century.

  • Thumbnail for Cultivating the Identity and Values of Northern Vermont
    Cultivating the Identity and Values of Northern Vermont by Brownell, Josephine McAlpin

    Vermont is a state defined both by its sprawling, natural landscapes, and its year-round tourist economy and increasing presence of second homeowners. More and more people are traveling to Vermont with the hopes of forming strong connections to the greater area. The idea of “Sense of Place”, or one’s individual connection to a particular place, is strong in Vermont. This study delves into individuals’ definitions of sense of place in Vermont, in order to look at the conservation of land and the preservation of culture in a place where the natural landscape serves as a core component of identity. Are individuals’ connections with northern Vermont enough to protect the region from human-related land degradation? Is a healthy balance between maintaining the old, while introducing parts of the new, attainable? Through conversations with conservationists, foresters, historical preservationists, and others, I unearth what currently constitutes Vermont’s culture and image. It is clear that as increases in development continue to haunt Vermont and its landscapes, sense of place serves as a powerful force strong enough to protect what matters most in Vermont.

  • Thumbnail for Generational and Situational Poverty: Influences on Nutritional Practices and Behaviors
    Generational and Situational Poverty: Influences on Nutritional Practices and Behaviors by Welsh, Flora del Carmen

    This research seeks to define and examine several key nutritional concepts, and discuss historical and environmental factors influencing nutritional habits and practices amongst people experiencing situational and generational poverty. Both of these concepts will be defined along with a discussion on the effects of bad nutrition on human biology. Finally, a closer look at the concepts of social capital and habitus, based on the work of Pierre Bourdieu (1977), will be examined and applied to nutritional deficiencies experienced by people living under situational and generational poverty.

  • Thumbnail for Neoliberalism in Practice: Examining the Multiplicities of Neoliberalism in Islam’s Moral Economy
    Neoliberalism in Practice: Examining the Multiplicities of Neoliberalism in Islam’s Moral Economy by Klockenbrink, Stephanie

    Islam’s moral economy is frequently posited in academic and popular literature as ‘counter’ or ‘alternative’ to neoliberal ideologies. However, despite having some contradictory values, I argue that neoliberalism is neither monolithic in form nor universal in effect and can be integrated with Islam’s moral economy taking different discourses based on geographical and cultural contexts. Through this paper I attribute the successful incorporation of neoliberal ideologies and Islamic values to an evolutionary theory known as the cost-signaling theory. By analyzing and comparing Christopher Taylor’s, “New Islamic Charities in North India: Re-Thinking Islam’s ‘Moral Economy’ to Sarah Thiam’s, “Disappearing Perpetrators: Why Alleged Traffickers of Qur’anic School Students in Senegal and Mali Never Get Charged with Crimes” I demonstrate the ability for neoliberalism to operate within a religious framework that often seems to contradict neoliberalism in practice.

  • Thumbnail for The Impacts of Twilight Tourism on Economic Security and Identity Development in Forks, WA
    The Impacts of Twilight Tourism on Economic Security and Identity Development in Forks, WA by Tilden, Hannah Nicole

    Forks, WA is a town of only 3,000 people which has become a tourist destination for fans of popular film and novel series, Twilight. This thesis explores how the introduction of tourists to Forks has impacted residents of the town both economically and culturally. Fieldwork was performed in January of 2016 on location in Forks.