Is music raced? How do musical sound, image, performance, and even performer become racialized? How does music speak to, reflect, reproduce, reinforce, and/or contest race and racism? How do individuals use music to express their ethnic/racial identity? Such questions hint at the undeniable yet ineffable influence of race on the American musical imagination. This seminar will consider the fraught intersection of race, power, and desire in contemporary popular music (hip hop, electronic dance music, rock, pop, punk, R&B/soul, world music, etc.). Utilizing an interdisciplinary amalgam of Popular Music Studies, Post-Colonial Theory, Critical Race Studies, Ethnic Studies, Literary Criticism, Media Studies, Cultural Studies, and (Ethno) Musicology, we will investigate the local creation and global circulation of racially-coded sonic signifiers; questions of authenticity and appropriation; music as a form of cultural resistance and colonial domination; and music as a key component in identity formation. This course is reading-, writing-, and theory-intensive.