Spring Courses

To view GWS courses offered during a specific semester, visit the online University Course Catalogue. Select the semester desired from the drop-down menu, then type "GWS" in the Course Prefix box or select GWS from the drop-down menu. Note that actual course offerings are subject to change, but this guide will provide the most current information available.

SPRING 2019 UNDERGRADUATE COURSES:  
Please download the PDF version of our undergraduate course flier for Spring 2019.
 

GWS 200: SEX & POWER
INSTRUCTOR: MELISSA STEIN
LECTURES: MW 12:00-12:50 DISCUSSION: (001) M 2:00-2:50 (002) W 2:00-2:50 (003) F 12:00-12:50

How does sex impact our sense of power? How is power forged through sexual imagery and sexual relationships? When does your sex set limits on your leisure, education, and earning power? Do you need real analysis instead of soundbites for explaining social inequalities between the sexes? This course addresses these key issues in GWS through a social science perspective that is cross-cultural, transnational, and interdisciplinary in its approach. It will cover such topics as identity and identity politics, sexuality and reproduction, labor and the gender politics of the workplace, health and health activism, feminist thought and action, gendered forms of violence and organized resistance, and the everyday experience of gender. Particular attention will be paid to the intersections of gender with other social categories, such as race, nationality, class, and sexual orientation. This course meets USP and/or UK Core requirement (Intellectual Inquiry, Social Science) and counts toward requirements for undergraduate GWS majors and minors. 
 
GWS 201: GENDER & POPULAR CULTURE
SECTIONS: 001: MWF 11:00-11:50 002: TR 3:30-4:45 003: MWF 10:00-10:50

Introduces students to basic methods of humanistic inquiry in Gender and Women's Studies, examines cultural beliefs and meanings about men and women, and explores the lives, achievements and creative expressions of women in a cross-cultural interactive and interdisciplinary format. This course meets USP and/or UK Core requirement (Intellectual Inquiry, Humanities) and counts toward requirements for undergraduate GWS majors and minors.
 
GWS 300-001: TOPICS IN GWS: GENDER AND DISABILITY
INSTRUCTOR: ANASTASIA TODD
TR 2:00-3:15

This interdisciplinary course is informed by the notion that disability is socially constructed, materially experienced, profoundly political, raced, gendered, and classed. The aim of this course is for students to develop and learn to employ a feminist disability studies lens in order to critically analyze how ableism has structured certain bodyminds as “less than,” “unruly,” “mad,” and/or “disposable.” We will also be looking to bodies that may or may not be normatively defined as “disabled,” but who deviate from the “normative body.” We will consider: how has disability, as a political and analytical category, been deployed by the state to manage and control deviant bodies and police the boundaries of ideal citizenship? How do certain bodies become defined as “good” bodies, happy bodies, desirable bodies? How can we envision a disability future? What bodies have been constructed as deserving to live/die/reproduce/be born? How do heteronormativity and disability intersect? What disabled bodies are valuable to this iteration of capitalism? And, what does gender have to do with all of this? This course counts toward requirements for undergraduate GWS majors and minors.

GWS 301-001 CROSSROADS: BLACK WOMEN LEADERS
INSTRUCTOR: CHRISTINA HAYNES
TR 12:30-1:45

This course will focus on African American women in positions of power and authority. During this course students will study the intersections of race, gender, class, and sexuality class to understand the lived experiences of African American women. Also, we will investigate how leadership is defined and understood in ways that are unique to the experiences of Black women. This course counts toward requirements for GWS majors and minors and fulfills the UK Core requirements for U.S. Citizenship.
 
GWS 302-001: GENDER ACROSS THE WORLD: GLOBAL GAYS IN THE GLOBAL GAZE
INSTRUCTOR:  ELIZABETH WILLIAMS
MWF 1:00-1:50

This course takes an interdisciplinary and transnational approach to the study of GLBTQ lives, histories, and identities. We will consider how same-sex attraction and love have been understood in dramatically different ways across time and place. Likewise, gender has not always been understood in terms of binary between male and female, masculine and feminine; rather, a wide range of gender(ed) identities have been deemed possible and acceptable in various times and places. Students in this course will likely be familiar with the current discourse of GLBTQ rights, a discourse that has, in the past decade, focused particularly on gay marriage. We will explore how this politics emerged in Europe and America, and ask to what extent this framework is applicable or useful in the Global South.
 
GWS 350-001 INTRODUCTION TO FEMINIST THEORIZING
INSTRUCTOR: ANASTASIA TODD
TR 9:30-10:45
This interdisciplinary course aims to provide students with an overview of feminist theoretical frameworks, such as feminist disability theory, black feminist theory, intersectionality, transnational feminist theory, and feminist affect theory. We will work to come to understand what these feminist theoretical tools mean as well as utilize these theoretical tools to analyze our contemporary social world. This course also considers how developments in queer theory and trans studies have informed feminist thinking and theorizing. This course is required for GWS majors and minors.
 
GWS 410-001 INTRODUCTION TO QUEER THEORY
INSTRUCTOR: ELLEN RIGGLE
TR 11:00-12:15
According to dictionary definitions of “queer,” the word may be used as a noun, verb, adverb, or adjective. The word may denote something as “odd” or different from normal, something strange, unconventional, or unusual. As an informal verb, queer may spoil or ruin something. “Theory” is a scientific or plausible explanation of something, an analysis that looks at a set of ideas in relation to one another. When the words are combined, queer theory spoils hegemonic stories and assumptions, and demands new explanations for phenomena. Applied to the study of gender and sexuality, queer theory becomes a framework for challenging “normal” and building new narratives that are inclusive and intersectional. In this course, we will read classic works as well as new writers in order to inform our conversation and understanding about what is queer and how it can shake up and (re)shape our world. This course fulfills requirements for the Gender and Women’s Studies undergraduate major and minor, and the Sexuality Studies certificate. 
 
GWS 595-001 ISSUES IN GWS: PRACTICUM: WRITING FROM HEART & MIND
INSTRUCTOR: SUSAN BORDO
R 4:00-6:30
In recent years, many scholars have begun to imagine careers that involve contributions to and participation in conversations that extend beyond the academy. Unfortunately, our training rarely prepares us for or provides opportunities to practice the kind of writing (and public speaking) that can communicate to readers/audiences outside our areas of specialization. Too often, as well, we lose our love of writing in the process of becoming “professionalized.” This course is designed for graduate students and advanced undergraduates who are interested in recovering their passion for writing and developing the skills and confidence that will enable them to reach an audience beyond the academy. With that goal in mind, we will discuss the obstacles, both personal and institutional, that lie in the way of writing from both heart and mind, we will read and practice genres of writing (e.g. Op-Ed pieces, memoir, “hybrid” pieces) that encourage clarity and creativity, and we will work to create a supportive community for criticism and revision. Students will also develop a more substantial writing project (journal article, dissertation proposal, book proposal, magazine article), individually tailored to their goals. This course counts toward requirements for the GWS major, minor, graduate certificate, and other degrees as appropriate. 
 
GWS 599-001 SEMINAR IN GWS: CAPSTONE
INSTRUCTOR: MELISSA STEIN
F 12:00-2:30
This GWS Senior Seminar and Capstone course is a space for you to synthesize what you have learnt about the methods and theories of Gender and Women’s Studies in a few different ways: you will be reflecting on the ways in which one puts together an argument and writes as a GWS scholar, and thinking through and applying some debates in the field. You will do this by writing a senior thesis that will be similar in format to a journal article or an academic long-form essay, editing the theses of other students, formally presenting your research to an audience of GWS faculty and students. Alongside, you will be reading and discussing materials which consider various approaches to research and writing in GWS. This course is required for GWS majors.
 
ADDITIONAL COURSES FOR GWS CREDIT
 
UKC 190: GLOBAL MIGRATION IN THE SPRING
INSTRUCTORS: CRISTINA ALCALDE & PATRICIA EHRKAMP
TR 11:00-12:15
This course examines human migration in the contemporary world as it emerges out of specific historical and geopolitical space-time constellations. Throughout the course we will engage with both voluntary and forced migration within and across national borders. We will critically approach migration as a complex, multi-layered process in which class, gender, race and racialization, sexuality, and age interact in shaping experiences of migration. The geographic focus of the course is global, and it will highlight regional differences as well as differences in the types of, and motivations for migration, as well as the responses to migration in various immigration contexts. For Spring 2019, featured topics include exclusion; transnational lives; intimacy and families; labor migration and trafficking; queer identities and homophobia; exile, refugees, and asylum; migrant activism and citizenship; and return migration. While we will draw on cases from around the globe we will pay particular attention to current events such as the refugee crisis in the Middle East, immigration politics in the United States, and migration connected to Latin America. The purpose of the course is to examine the broader context within which contemporary refugee movements, labor migration, human smuggling, and immigration policies emerge across space and time. The course is co-taught by two professors—an anthropologist and a geographer. The professors’ combined approaches to and perspectives on topics related to migration are meant to enhance our overall understanding of migration processes and experiences and to underscore the varied approaches and topics within the broad theme of migration globally.
 
ANT 401-001: GENDER ROLES IN CROSS CULTURAL PERSPECTIVE
INSTRUCTOR: MONICA UDVARDY
TR 2:00-3:15
The world encompasses a liberating array of cross-cultural variation in how humans interpret sexual difference. ANT 401 explores this diversity and examines how it is socially and culturally constructed. A range of gender roles and identities at all levels of social organizational complexity are surveyed and examined through the lens of how conceptions of gender affect, and are affected by kinship and social organization, the political economy, as well as belief systems and worldview. Additional topics include the history of the study of gender within anthropology and the impact of development on gender systems in the global South. A primary objective is for the student to reflect upon her/his own gendered self. This course can count toward requirements for undergraduate GWS majors and minors, and the Certificate in Sexuality Studies.
 
CHI 320-001: INTRODUCTION TO CONTEMPORARY CHINESE FILM
INSTRUCTOR: LIANG LUO
TR 9:30-10:45
This course introduces students to critically engage with a selection of contemporary Chinese-language films from Mainland China, Taiwan and Hong Kong. We will look at these films together with interviews and scholarly articles, in light of a number of issues such as relationship between the city and the countryside, aesthetic representation of contemporary economic, cultural, and political developments, and issues of class, gender, sexuality, identity, and the environment in the age of globalization. All films are subtitled in English. No knowledge of Chinese languages or history is presumed or required. This course can count toward requirements for undergraduate GWS majors and minors.
 
EPE 525/773: CAMPUS ACTIVISM AND EDUCATIONAL JUSTICE
INSTRUCTOR: KAREN TICE
T 4:00-6:30
This graduate and upper level undergraduate course will consider student movements and dissent across time and space. We will examine a variety of precursor and contemporary student movements that have challenged gendered and racial injustices as well as violence and repression on campus; militarism/imperialism; apartheid; political and religious repression; university investments and budgets; workplace issues; policing; governance and diversity policies; student debt and privatization; LGBTQ rights, etc. We will also consider the struggle to establish resource centers, to expand access, and to develop area and ethnic studies. We will examine student mobilizations such as the 1930’s New Negro Campus Movement, Students for a Democratic Society, and the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee as well as student movements in Mexico, China, and Brazil. We will also probe organizational linkages and legacies for contemporary movements such as Black Lives Matter and analyze various forms of protest including teach-ins, occupations, Die-ins, strikes, and international solidarity work-study brigades. The following questions will guide our discussions: How have students, faculty, and staff helped to remake the university and the state? How have the politics of race, gender, class, sexuality, place/nation, geo-political politics, war, university and state policies, and right-wing conservatism produced or repressed campus protest and discontent? What strategies, ideologies, alliances, and official and state repression/cooptation characterize or accompany student mobilizations? What are the national and transnational connections among student movements? Course readings will include primary historical writings and multidisciplinary readings. This course can count toward requirements for undergraduate GWS majors and minors.
 
HIS 355: WOMEN AND GENDER IN LATIN AMERICA
INSTRUCTOR: F.R. CHASSEN-LOPEZ
TR 2:00-3:15
Although Latin America is known as the land of machismo, ten women have already served as president in different countries. The paintings of Frida Kahlo, the Mexican artist, go for the highest price of any female artist in all of the Americas. The seventeenth-century Mexican nun, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, was the hemisphere’s pioneer in the struggle for women’s rights and the mothers of the Plaza de Mayo were instrumental in the overthrow of the military dictatorship in Argentina in 1983. This class will explore femininity, masculinity, and gender relations south of the border, and deconstruct common stereotypes along the way. We will use a rich variety of readings (testimonials, literary works, and biographies), documentaries, and films in order to understand how people’s lives have changed over time. This course can count toward requirements for undergraduate GWS majors and minors. 
 
HIS 352-002:  SAINTS AND SINNERS: GENDER AND RELIGION IN THE MEDIEVAL AND EARLY MODERN WEST
INSTRUCTOR: MELISSA KAPITAN
TR 2:00-3:15
Are all women to blame for Eve tricking Adam into biting the apple? If so, can they be redeemed by following Mary, the Mother of God, and living as consecrated virgins? For those women who married,
what types of sexual activity were sinful? And, what about the men who made themselves celibate for the kingdom of God? Were priests and monks masculine? What happens when Martin Luther declares that good works will not earn you a spot in heaven? Can women be redeemed then? This course seeks to answer these questions and others about the intersection of gender and religion in the medieval and early modern West. We begin the course with the legalization of Christianity in the fourth-century Roman Empire, and we end with the rejection of religion and new meanings of motherhood in the French Revolution. Students will also engage with the place of gender in Judaism and Islam; the middle ages and early modern period had many intersecting cultures, and students will explore how
gender fit into this diverse world.
 
 
MCL 390-001: TOPICS IN FOLKLORE AND MYTHOLOGY: THE WHITE SNAKE
INSTRUCTOR: LIANG LUO
TR 12:30-1:45
This course introduces students to critically engage with a selection of Chinese, Japanese, Korean and English-language textual and multimedia re/productions of the White Snake tale in contemporary perspectives. We will look at these texts and audio/visual and digital materials together with scholarly articles and other accounts, in light of a number of issues such as the gendered construction of the snake women across cultures, the use of folklore and mythology in contemporary times, aesthetic representation of contemporary economic, cultural, and political developments, and issues of class, gender, sexuality, identity, and the environment in the age of globalization. All materials are accessible in English. No knowledge of Chinese languages or history is presumed or required. This course can count toward requirements for undergraduate GWS majors and minors.
 
PHI 305-001: HEALTH CARE ETHICS
INSTRUCTOR: JULIA BURSTEN
TR 12:30-1:45
In the Old Testament, the Book of Ecclesiastes tells us that everything that happens, happens in its own time: a time to be born, a time to die. A time to kill, a time to heal. A time to keep silence, a time to speak. This advice, handed down from a traditional source of moral authority, suggests a contextual response to ethical questions, such as ``Is it ever alright to kill someone for medical reasons?'' ``Do healthcare providers ever have an obligation to share a patient's secrets with their family members or authorities?'' and ``Is it ever alright to violate someone's religious beliefs if you believe that in doing so, you are saving their life?'' We turn to a wide variety of sources of moral authority to answer these sorts of questions, from the books of the Judeo-Christian Bible, the Tao, and the Qur'an to the laws of a country, the rules of a hospital, and the values of an individual or family. These `moral compasses' that we use greatly influence the ways that we think about people's rights when it comes to health care and biomedical research. Our aim in this course is to examine the ways that we make decisions about moral and ethical dilemmas in health care, and how these decisions affect health care providers and beneficiaries, as well as their families and the public at large. We will examine cases from a variety of clinical and research settings. By comparing cases of conflict between individual and group rights, provider and patient rights, and intercultural conflicts of values, students will develop basic moral concepts such as what constitutes a right and a moral obligation, analyze the relative importance of values across a variety of cultural and clinical contexts, and formulate a self-reflective picture of their own moral compasses in health care settings. This course can count toward requirements for undergraduate GWS majors and minors.
 
HJS 425-001/MCL 597-001:  WOMEN AND JEWISH LITERATURE
INSTRUCTOR: SHEILA JELEN
TR 11:00-12:15

How are we shaped by what we read? Women in traditional Jewish society were not granted access to the texts at the heart of Jewish culture. In this class we explore the relationship between reading and women’s culture, through the lens of Jewish women in Eastern Europe from the 17th Century through the present.
 
WRD 422: BEYOND ELECTORAL POLITICS: PUBLIC ADVOCACY IN EVERYDAY LIFE
INSTRUCTOR: KARRIEANN SOTO VEGA
TR 2:00-3:15
Starting with a brief exploration of the radical potential of electoral politics and the differentiation between public advocacy rhetorical efforts that occur in the "every day," this course takes an intersectional approach to public advocacy in diverse individual, community, regional, and (trans)national spheres. As a class we will study initiatives such as the Green Dot program, the Take Back Cheapside campaign, Pulso Latino Radio, LGBTQ* Resources, and the work of national non-profits like United We Dream. the Southern Poverty Law Center, and ACLU, among others. Besides the academic study of public advocacy in the every day, students will engage with speakers about their distinct rhetorical approaches to public advocacy, and work towards the composition of supporting materials for an initiative of their choice.

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