ARTX 195: Art, Power and Society
In this course we will think about our relationship to and responsibilities towards political and social engagement as artists, thinkers, activists, and participants in society, within context of the U.S. here and abroad. Questions we will consider include: What is art? What is power, and how does it work? What are the intersections between art and power, what effects do they have on society, and how can art that challenges power and power relationships disrupt social norms and conventions, systems of power, or power matrices? Students in this course will learn how they can impact society through art, and that “art” might not be what they think it is. This course counts as an elective towards American Studies.
ARTX 290: Art and Gender : Primitivism-Surreal
This course explores the intersection of visual culture and gender through the lens of critical theory. We will examine how gender has been constructed both in and through the visual arts historically as well as in the present through various interrelated topics such as the myth of the artist; the gaze, the voyeur, and desire; the gendered body in visual art; and the gendered body’s intersection with race, class, and sexual orientation.
ARTX 345: Performance Art
This course examines the history of performance art in the 20th and 21st centuries, with an emphasis on the political and aesthetic interventions of the body in visual art and visual culture, as well as the relationship between performance art, subjectivity, and identity, including queerness, gender, and race. Topics will range from action painting to video performance, dance to sex, and violence to social intervention. This course counts for Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies.
AFST/HIST 272: Gender Relations in Africa
This course explores categories of masculinity and femininity that relate to and inform one another. It analyzes how these identity categories interact with other axes of social and political power, such as ethnic affiliation, economic status, and age in various places and times in Africa.
CLAS/HIST 230: Women in Classical Antiquity
A literary, historical, and cultural survey of social structures and private life in ancient Greece and Rome. Issues covered include constructions of sexuality, cross-cultural standards of the beautiful, varieties of courtship and marriage, and contentions between pornography and erotica. Students will examine sources from medical, philosophic, lyric, tragic, comic, and rhetorical writers as well as representative works from vase painting, the plastic arts, graffiti, etc. (This is a designated Greek and Roman literature or culture course in Classics.)
ENGL 323: Chicana/o Literature
A selective study of Chicana/o literary and cultural texts. Possible emphases could include colonialism and conquest, indigenismo, geopolitical conflict or “the Borderlands,” identity formations and identifications, and/or sociocultural resistances. This course fulfills the Applied Theory requirement for the Literary Criticism and Theory craft sequence. For the Historical and Cultural Breadth requirement, this course counts as a 20th- or 21st-Century course, or it fulfills the minoritarian, diasporic, or transnational requirement.Prerequisite: Take one of the following: ENGL-109, CES-200, CES-240, CES-260, or WGS-101; or instructor permission.
ENGL 324: Early Modern Women’s Literature: Shakespeare’s Sisters
A study of the women writers that Virginia Woolf termed “Shakespeare’s Sisters” when she lamented the lack of early women writers. We’ll study these, primarily British, women writers of the period, emphasizing the social, political, economic, and cultural conditions of women’s authorship before the nineteenth century.
Prerequisite: Sophomore standing or a Reading the World course.
ENGL 325: 19th Century Women’s Literature: The Epic Age
A study of British and U.S. women writers of the period, emphasizing social, political, economic, and cultural conditions for women’s authorship as well as recurring concerns and themes of women authors and the emergence of African American women’s writing.
Prerequisite: Sophomore standing or a Reading the World course.
ENGL 326: Women’s Literature 1900-present: Modern Voices
A study of women’s writing in English in the 20th and 21st centuries, emphasizing cultural diversity, thematic commonalities, and questions of voice and gender.
Prerequisite: Sophomore standing or a Reading the World course.
HIST 220: American Women’s History to 1870
An in-depth survey of the lives of women in America from the beginning of the colonial era to 1870. Topics include: the differences of class, religion, and race in women’s lives, religion, work, friendships, family life, community, health and sexuality, the women’s rights movement, and the impact of the American Revolution and Civil War.
HIST 221: American Women’s History since 1870
An in-depth survey of the lives of women in America from 1870 to today. Topics include the impact of race, class, and region in women’s lives, paid and unpaid labor, prostitution, family life, community, birth control, the women’s rights movement, and the impact of US involvement in international wars.
HIST/RELG 267: Women and Judaism
This course explores the religious and social position women have historically occupied in Jewish society. We will discuss religious practice and theological beliefs as well as social and economic developments as a means of addressing questions such as: What role have women played in Jewish tradition? How are they viewed by Jewish law? How has their status changed in different historical contexts, and why might those changes have taken place? What are contemporary ideas about the status of Jewish women, and how have these ideas influenced contemporary Jewish practices and communal relations? What do the historical and religious experiences of Jewish women teach us about the way that Judaism has developed?
HIST 292: Gender and Sexuality in Colonial Latin America
This course examines gender and sexuality as historical and theoretical constructs. It explores how definitions of gender and sexuality evolved in the medieval and early modern periods, and how these definitions reflected Europe’s religious, social, and political concerns. Together with the concepts of gender and sexuality, the course will explore: the various roles of men and women; pre-modern sexualities; religion, gender, and sexuality; gender, sex, and power; and the agency of women in pre-modern Europe. The course is interdisciplinary, drawing from fields such as the history of medicine, women’s and gender studies, anthropology, and the history of sexuality.
PHIL 311: Postmodern Critical Theory
Introduction to contemporary French philosophy, with special emphasis on the themes of language, desire, embodiment, and sexual difference. We examine the early debate between Merleau-Ponty and Lacan on the acquisition of language, formation of desire, and development of body images We then turn to two key post-structuralists: Michel Foucault and Jacques Derrida. We focus upon Foucault’s transition from his “archaeology of knowledge” to his mature “genealogy of desire,” contrasting his account of embodiment and social power to Pierre Bourdieu’s. After reviewing Derrida’s deconstructionist analysis of language, we turn to one of the following figures: Kristeva, Deleuze, Irigary, Butler, or Zizek. Films are shown throughout the course on Wednesday evenings. Media Studies concentrators are encouraged to write final essays linking philosophy and cinematography. Suggested for media studies, psychology, English, French, and political science students. Some background in philosophy recommended
RELG 202: Same Sex, Gender, and Religion
This sophomore seminar explores the intersection of religions, same-sex affection/love/relations, and the category of gender. At the most basic level we examine what different religions have to say about sexuality, in particular, non-heterosexualities. We look at the role that gender plays in these constructions of these sexualities, and we return to our starting point to analyze the role of religions in these constructions of gender and same-sex sexualities, affections, love, and/or relations. This course is a Shared Passages Sophomore Seminar.
RELG 204: Feminist Studies in Religion
This course explores questions that lie at the intersections of the ideas about women, men, and gender in the academic study of religion. We examine the transformation of scholarship about religion based on feminist studies in of religion. We look first at the academic study of religion, and then at the experiences of women and men in different religious traditions, and move to more complex questions about the ways in which the lives of women and men are shaped by gendered categories. We pay particular attention to issues of identity, voice, history, and agency. Prerequisite: Previous coursework in Religion is desirable, but not required.
RELG 210: Sex and the Bible
This course is about sex and interpretation, focusing primarily on how Christians have interpreted the Bible around questions of human sexuality. The questions that we will consider are: What does it mean to say a particular view of sexuality and sexual behavior is “biblical” given the sheer variety of possible interpretations? How have changing notions of human sexuality affected the way that the biblical text is understood and deployed? We will explore these questions by reading key biblical texts from the Hebrew Bible and New Testament and their interpretation by thinkers from antiquity up to the present. Topics to be covered include marriage, gender, desire, same-sex relationships, and sexual renunciation.
Prerequisite: Previous course(s) in the Department of Religion recommended but not required.
Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures
CHIN 260: Women in China
As in many countries subject to imperialism, women’s movements in China were an important part of China’s modernization project. How, then, have Chinese feminist theories and women’s movements been different from those in the West? What is it like to live as a woman in a rapidly changing China through the 20th and 21st centuries? This course takes three approaches to explore these questions. To examine the characteristics and changes of gender roles we look at the representations of women in literature and film. To understand women’s experiences we read women writers’ essays, memoirs and fictions. To think about how women work as historical agents who make historical changes, we look at women activists, feminist thinkers and women’s movements.
JAPN 236: Pre-Modern Japanese Literature
This course deals with literature produced in the Japanese court in the Japanese language between the ninth and fourteenth century and will focus on the of the women’s tradition of the court. Japan is the only nation in the world whose early canonical works of prose literature in the vernacular are consistently and overwhelmingly by women. This course will examine several major texts of that early tradition, the second of which, “Tale of Genji”, is the earliest piece of long prose fiction in the world. We will be analyzing the various texts in relation to such questions as the following: What sorts of social/cultural circumstances supported the flowering of a woman’s literary tradition? What have been the themes of their writings? What role did these texts serve in the lives/consciousness of their predominately female audience?
JAPN 250: Manga/Anime and Gender in Modern Japan
Why are manga/anime so popular? Let’s find out. This course undertakes a critical analysis of manga (comics) and anime (animation). We will examine these media’s historical origins, narrative features, the world’s reception and much more. The samurai warrior, the bishônen (beautiful boy), and the sexy cyborg-gender in Japanese culture has vivid representations. This course explores constructions of masculinity and femininity, paying attention to the figures of the girl as the postwar descendant of the bishônen, the ostensibly undersocialized otaku and yaoi culture and transgender manga where imagination opens the door to alternate and critical realities.
ANSO 220: Special Topics: The Family
This course examines the institution of The Family, primarily from a critical perspective. After situating The Family in cultural and historical structures of race/ethnicity, class, and gender, we explore the institution as a site for the production and reproduction of femininity, masculinity, and (hetero)sexuality. We also examine the implications of the institution and the dynamics of power embedded in it for individuals and groups working against the dominant script.
ANSO 225: Sex and Sexualities
This course provides students with an overview of influential theories about the social aspects of sex and sexuality, as well as some direct engagement with ethnographic representations of sexual worlds and their politics. It examines the diversity of human sexual identities and activities in their historical, philosophical, legal, and social contexts. This course will consider sex and sexualities in an intersectional way, that is, in and through their intersections with issues of race, class, gender, nationality, and globality.
Prerequisite: ANSO-103 or CGHL-120
POLS 310: Women, States, and NGOs
What role do states have, if any, in defining, maintaining, constructing, or remedying sex discrimination? This course provides a comparative, historical framework to consider the challenges and opportunities feminist movements have met and continue to face as they mobilized both within and beyond their countries to demand social justice.
PSYC 270: Feminist Psychology of Women
This course is designed for students who are interested in a seminar dealing specifically with issues related to women’s lives and experiences from a feminist perspective. We will examine the field of psychology for its androcentric biases toward women and correct these biases by reviewing literature that places women at the center of inquiry, both as researchers and objects of study. Specific topics will include: silencing of women in classroom, pathologizing of women, sex bias in diagnosing, feminist developmental theories, sexual harassment in the academy, feminist responses to Freud, myth of beauty in adolescence, women and leadership, women’s sexuality, psychological consequences of incest, rape, and other forms of violence against women. AOS (SS)
Prerequisite: PSYC 101 and one additional psychology course.
PSYC 465: Advanced Psychology of Sexuality
In this course, we will consider the study of sexuality and sexual development from a psychological perspective. From this perspective, I will present ideas, theories, and concepts of gender and sexuality that are informed from the study of human behavior. The course aims to aid your critique of existing scholarship while creating your own framework for conceptualizing issues surrounding notions of sexuality. This course covers a wide variety of topics concerning the psychology of human sexuality. For example, we will consider sexual anatomy, communication about sexuality, queer identities, polyamory, and pornography.
Prerequisite: PSYC-101 and one additional PSYC course. Junior or Senior Standing only.