The goal of this course is to provide an introduction to the forms of difference and inequality reflected, constructed, and reproduced through notions of race and ethnicity. It asks: what are the forms of knowledge, practices, institutions, and values that have informed the nature and meaning of race and ethnic relations in both the U.S. context and globally? Using a historical, theoretical, and comparative approach, the course examines both the origins of contemporary race and ethnic categories and the way those categories have been reconfigured and deployed over time and space as part of diverse political, social, and economic projects. Drawing on specific cases, students explore how notions of race and ethnicity intersect with other forms of difference such as class, gender, and national identity. Through engagement with sociological and anthropological analyses of race and ethnic difference, the course thus provides students with a conceptual and theoretical toolbox with which to critically examine contemporary race and ethnic relations and engage in informed debate about their implications.