Professors alter curriculum to lecture on Michael Brown

Maggie Lit

Total Shares
This is the CRO SBAR

  • A course at Washington University will teach Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, and the lack of diversity in Ferguson’s local governance.
  • The courses include "Policing," "Introduction to Criminology and Criminal Justice," and "Power, Justice, and the City."
  • Professors in St. Louis are changing their curriculums to integrate the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., and the events that followed.
  • Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Loavesofbread.

    Professors in St. Louis are revising class curriculums to integrate “sensitive issues of race and policing” that have surfaced since the August 9 shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo.

    The 18-year-old was laid to rest Monday, initiating student discussions about issues of racial profiling, use of force, and tensions exacerbated by economic disparities.

    "We’ll also consider whether a more-diverse force might have been able to quell some of the unrest in Ferguson."   

    Criminal Justice and Sociology professors claim their new curriculums put a face on their case studies, whereas professors working in other departments had to grapple with issues of relevance but found a way to “prompt calls for change.”

    Daniel Isom is an African-American professor teaching “Policing” and “Introduction to Criminology and Criminal Justice” at University of Missouri in St. Louis. He was a St. Louis cop from 2008-2012.

    “We’ll examine cities, like Cincinnati, that have collaborative agreements in which citizens have a voice in the hiring process and in the promotion and selection of the chief,” said Isom. “We’ll also consider whether a more-diverse force might have been able to quell some of the unrest in Ferguson.”

    Isom plans to explore the question of whether people would feel more confident in America’s justice system if all citizens could review use-of-force cases.

    “That way, when an incident happens, the response is something the community has agreed is appropriate,” says Isom.

    Clarissa Rile Hayward teaches “Power, Justice, and the City” and “History of Political Thought II: Legitimacy, Equality, and the Social Contract” at Washington University in St. Louis.

    In Hayward’s course, she plans to “examine power and racial injustice, resistance to power in urban America, and power and justice in American suburbs.” She claims that Ferguson will be relevant “in every case.”

    Hayward also plans to examine the lack of diversity in Ferguson’s local governance, and further investigate how it affects the area’s constituents. In addition, the class will discuss Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, and social contract theory.

    “I hope that continuing the conversations about racial injustice that were having around campus in the classroom will highlight the relevance of political theory to political life,” says Hayward.

    Cindy Epperson is a professor teaching “Introduction to Sociology” and “Crime and Society” at St. Louis College at Meramec, and is also Ferguson into her classes.

    “We’ll talk about how the life and death of this young man will lead to social change,” says Epperson. The course curriculum is aimed at “debunking stereotypes and myths.”

    “Most of the looters shown in the media were black, so people who believe this is what black people do [and] are going to say, ‘see I told you so.’”

    Epperson went on to say that she and her colleagues have spent time with the protesters, in a collaborative effort to come up with possible solutions to perpetuated racial attitudes.

    Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @MaggieLitCRO

    Maggie Lit

    Maggie Lit


    Maggie is a reporter with Campus Reform. Before joining the Campus Reform team, Maggie wrote for The Daily Caller and Radio America

    During her time in college, Maggie spent her summers producing content for politically conservative news outlets including The Daily Caller, Radio America, and CBS Denver.

    More By Maggie Lit


    Shirley Baldwin
    @nutjob - 5 hours ago

    Students encouraged to apply for porn-funded s" target="blank_"> via @campusreform

    Say No to the TTIP
    @kencampbell66 - 6 hours ago

    @deceptibling @campusreform @ASU You would have to be a creep to encourage young women to do that. Its totally sickening in my opinion.

    Nathan Allen
    @deceptibling - 6 hours ago

    @kencampbell66 @campusreform Iwould expect that at @ASU 13 years ago Shanes World along with chanting ag FBgames: ASU we make porn!

    Georgia Girl
    @AnotherGeorgian - 6 hours ago

    @kencampbell66 @campusreform I get a little tired of this. Whites have been enslaved, have been castigated. Be PEOPLE. Stop PC.

    Georgia Girl
    @AnotherGeorgian - 6 hours ago

    @kencampbell66 @campusreform That is Satan. He is at an all time high right now making some people think "wrong" is "right".

    Say No to the TTIP
    @kencampbell66 - 6 hours ago

    Students encouraged to apply for porn-funded scholarship via @campusreform That is creepy!

    Say No to the TTIP
    @kencampbell66 - 6 hours ago

    White professor teaches 'problem of whiteness' course at Arizona State via @campusreform

    Lone Biker
    @mp663001 - 6 hours ago

    President Obama pushes tax on college savings plans via @campusreform

    Latest 30 Articles