Introduction to Gender Studies
This is an interdisciplinary course that surveys critical issues examined by scholars in the field of women’s and gender studies. In this course, students are introduced to key concepts and theories, which can be used as lenses to think critically about the world around them, their own positionality, and the diversity of lived experiences in different social, historical, cultural, and global moments.
Major focal points to be covered over the course of the semester are: social construction theory and aspects of identity, such as gender, race, class, age, sexuality, ability, and religion; analysis of systems of privilege and discrimination; the historicization of institutions and institutional power; popular culture and representation; intersectionality; heteronormativity; and reproductive justice. While the history of feminism will not be covered in its totality in this course, key moments in that history will be important in framing some of these concepts.
Students will be required to do close readings and screenings of both primary and secondary sources, learn interdisciplinary approaches to research and methods, and demonstrate the application of new knowledge.