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The Institute for Research on Women and Gender offers courses in feminist texts, women's literature, women's and gender studies, gay and lesbian studies, women and art and film, and black women in America. For questions about specific courses, contact the department. Some of these face-to-face courses will be offered in the HyFlex format to ensure that all of our students can make progress toward their degree requirements, if faced with delays due to student visas or vaccination effectiveness wait times.
Courses Expand All. Drawing on women directors from Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East, this course analyzes emerging aesthetics, trends and debates shaping cinemas of the Global South. The course explores the work of key women filmmakers from the Global South as they forge a visual semantics in a celluloid landscape dominated by male directors. Prerequisite Students registering for this course are required to attend the screening and commentary on Tuesdays pm, and lecture and discussion section on Thursdays am. Enrollment limited to 20 students. This year's lab links Prof.
Because cinematic visuality is an increasingly powerful tool for influencing public opinion across international borders, this course will train students in essential skills in visual literacy and reading, and provide fluency in the theoretical vocabularies of Diaspora Studies and feminist film theory and analysis. The Lab will use films by and about women in the quotidian conditions of the African Diaspora to teach students how gender and racial formation are lived in diaspora, and to engage the diasporic visual practices women mobilize to represent themselves.
The course is structured around a Tuesday evening film series featuring African women filmmakers and presentations by filmmakers, curators, and visual artists and seminar discussion on Thursday mornings. Prerequisite Students registering for this course are required to attend the screening on Tuesdays pm, and lecture and discussion section on Thursdays am. Enrollment limited to 25 students.
Focusing on the intellectual work, social activism and cultural expression of African American women, we examine how they understood their lives, resisted oppression and struggled to change society. We will also discuss theoretical frameworks such as "double jeopardy," or "intersectionality" developed for the study of black women. The seminar will encourage students to pay particular attention to the diversity of black women and critical issues facing Black women today. Prerequisite Students must attend first day of class and admission will be decided then.
Identifies issues and concerns, past and present, articulated by contemporary Jewish feminists: perspectives of secularists, observant traditional women, heterosexuals, lesbians, feminists, and activists committed to diverse political ideologies. Sexuality is often taken to be a natural and unchanging element of individual life. In this course, we seek to examine the ways in which sex is both social and political. We will consider how sexuality has been socially constructed, paying careful attention to the ways these ideas relate to other social forces such as gender, race, and class.
Gendered Controversies: Women's Bodies and Global Conflicts WMST BC 4 pts Investigates the ificance of contemporary and historical issues of social, political, and cultural conflicts centered on women's bodies. How do such conflicts constitute women, and what do they tell us about societies, cultures, and politics? Enrollment 18 of Instructor Janet Jakobsen. View Directory Listing. We will consider the political, racial, social and other contexts in which African women write and are written about in the context of their located lives in Africa and in the African Diaspora. Prerequisite Enrollment limited to 14 students.
Focusing on the last Argentine military dictatorship — 83 , the seminar examines the memory of childhood experience in sociocultural, historiographic and cinematographic approaches. Topics include childhood as political subject, public policy aimed at children, children of the disappeared and everyday life. Prerequisite Limited to 20 students.
We will consider how knowledge is produced by particular bodies in particular spaces and times. Interpreting Bodies: Engendering the Black Body WMST BC 4 pts This course examines how the body functions as an analytic model and a process of embodiment by focusing on the black female body in particular. Looking at feminist theorizing of the black body, it explores how the black female body has been marked in particular ways and with profound effects. Focusing particularly but not exclusively upon prostitution, we will pay careful attention to the diverse range of social experiences which form sex work, as well as the way in which prostitution is utilized as a governing metaphor within sexual relations more generally.
Some questions the course will consider: How has sex work changed over time, and what do these changes tell us about both the nature of sex work and about the broader society? In what ways is sex work similar to or different from other forms of service labor or other types of intimate relationship?
How do questions of race, class, sexuality and gender alter the meaning and experience of sex work? What sorts of desires and expectations do clients bring to interactions with sex workers, and in what ways have these shifted over time?
Recent controversies concerning sex trafficking and underage prostitution will also be addressed, as will the effects of various regulatory schemes which have been developed around the world. Prerequisite Enrollment limited to 15 students. This seminar examines media theory and various media platforms including Language, Photography, Film, Television, Radio, Digital Video, and Computing as treated by feminists, critical race and queer theorists, and other scholars and artists working from the margins. Enrollment 22 of Instructor Jonathan Beller.
Materiality and non-discursive forces, what can be called affective politics, impact our sense of belonging and desire for comfort in times of chaos, religious and political instability. The same material experiences can produce materialized emotions such as love or hate depending on specific political and social positioning within the larger polity.
Passion is at once a phenomenological state and an extremely fluid currency of social, political and economic transaction. The experience of passion morphs continuously, changing valence while passing from hand to hand, body to body, circumstance to circumstance.
Theoretical Paradigms of Feminist Scholarship: Sex Work and Trafficking WMST G 3 pts This seminar examines contemporary issues of sex work and trafficking into forced prostitution, with emphasis on implications for human rights and health. The class explores the use of ethnographic and social research methods in producing complex and culturally grounded descriptions of diverse combinations of work, sexuality, migration, and exploitation, globally and in the US.
The seminar also considers the relationship between social research and the development of policy and interventions. Historical background, gender theory, and current legal frameworks are also examined. Prerequisite: introductory class in gender or sexuality studies, or introduction to human rights. Prerequisite introductory class in gender or sexuality studies, or introduction to human rights. Instructors permission. This course grapples with gender in its complex intersection with other systems of power and inequality, including: sexuality, race and ethnicity, class and nation.
Topics include: feminisms, feminist and queer theory, commodity culture, violence, science and technology, visual cultures, work, and family. In this course, we seek to examine ways in which sex is both social and political. That is to say, sexuality has different meanings in different contexts, and it has different effects in terms of power relations within the social order. To this end, we will examine how sexuality has been socially constructed, paying careful attention to the ways these ideas relate to other social forces such as gender, race, and class.
We begin with a historical examination as to how sexuality has been defined as a natural component of self by early sexologists and eugenicists, paying careful attention to their contemporary legacies. We continue this historical overview through an examination of early scholars who increasingly argued that sexuality has a social basis, culminating in the theoretical analyses of Foucault.
In the second part of the course, we will consider the state of sexual politics within the contemporary United States, focusing upon key arenas of political struggle including sex education, prostitution, and homosexuality. How have feminist attitudes towards sex changed over time, and how did attitudes vary amongst feminists themselves? And what are the legacies of past feminist sexual politics for the present day? We will also analyze contradictions, tensions and continuities within diverse feminist approaches to sexuality, and assess similarities and differences amongst feminists from different national backgrounds.
Colloquium on Feminist Inquiry WMST V 4 pts A survey of research methods from the social sciences and interpretive models from the humanities, inviting students to examine the tension between the production and interpretation of data. Students receive firsthand experience practicing various research methods and interpretive strategies, while considering larger questions about how we know what we know. Memoir and Embodiment WMST W 4 pts Recent decades have witnessed a flood of life writing about the body, much of it by women and much of it about experiences of illness and disability.
This development represents a ificant change, as autobiography has historically been reserved for the most accomplished and able-bodied among us. We will consider how these new memoirs talk back to doctors and other health care professionals who medicalize the disabled body, as well as social environments that stigmatize and exclude the ill and disabled. Each week we will read one memoir, paired with other writings meant to prompt discuss and critical examination. In addition to more traditional academic writing, students will also have opportunities to experiment with their own life writing.
We will examine changing sexual cultures and their relationship to new gender norms from the late seventeenth century through the mid twentieth century. The emergence and ascendance of concepts of gender, the self, heterosexuality and homosexuality will be examined through political, intellectual, cultural, and social history. From Exclusion to Inclusion? This course seeks to understand the political and social forces shaping the transformation of these sex nonconformists from a pariah group into a viable social movement and eventually into a powerful constituency within the Democratic Party.
Gender and Power in Transnational Perspective WMST W 4 pts Considers formations of gender, sexuality, and power as they circulate transnationally, as well as transnational feminist movements that have emerged to address contemporary gendered inequalities. Topics include political economy, global care chains, sexuality, sex work and trafficking, feminist politics, and human rights. Prerequisite Critical Approaches or the instructor's permission. We explore how feminist analyses may reorient how we think about the past.
We also ask how historical perspectives can bring the contingent and contextual nature of ideas about gender and sexuality into relief. All of these images are associated with urban life and have clear racial, class, gender, and sexual connotations. We will be tracing the differences between the representation of the Jewish-American "New Woman" and the "New Negro Woman," while discussing what these differences might ify with respect to the positionality of Jewish and black women in the US.
Queer Theories and Histories WMST W 4 pts This course examines a genealogy of contemporary debates in queer theory beginning with feminist debates on sexuality and power in the s and moving through critical race theory, the rise of antinormativity, affect theory, and posthumanism. Will fulfill Feminist Theory requirement. It also examines women's quests to realize their full potential in Jewish and non-Jewish communities on both sides of the Atlantic. Prerequisite students must attend first day of class and admission will be decided then.
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