This course offers an introduction to Women’s and Gender Studies, an interdisciplinary academic field that explores critical questions about the meaning of gender in society. The primary goal of this course is to familiarize students with key issues, questions and debates in Women’s and Gender Studies scholarship, both historical and contemporary. Gender scholarship critically analyzes themes of gendered performance
and power in a range of social spheres, such as law, culture, education, work, medicine, social policy and the family.
Throughout the semester, we will “question gender” in multiple ways:
- Why has gender been a primary organizing principle of society?
- How do “gendered scripts” for dress, appearance and behavior emerge among different social
groups and in different societies and historical periods?
- How do we explain the sexual division of labor and the unequal social status of women and girls
and those activities and roles deemed “feminine” in society?
- In what ways does gender intersect with race, ethnicity and sexuality?
- How do gendered structures of power and authority operate?
- What factors contribute to the formation and success of movements for and against gender
equality and fluidity?
Learning content and outcomes
At the completion of the course the student will be able to:
- Understand and engage with central debates in the field of Women’s and Gender Studies.
- Define and apply basic terms and concepts central to this field.
- Apply a variety of methods of analyzing gender in society, drawing upon both primary and secondary
- Apply concepts and theories of Women’s and Gender Studies to life experiences and historical
events and processes.
- Communicate effectively about gender issues in both writing and speech, drawing upon Women’s and Gender Studies scholarship and addressing a public audience
55% – Classwork (review questions, homework, essay, and other related activities)
5% – Merits
40% – Final Exam
- Crawford, M. (2018). Transformations- Women, Gender, and Psychology. New York: McGraw-Hill
- Grewa, I., & Kaplan, C. (2006). An Introduction to Women’s Studies Gender in a Transnational World.
New York: The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
- Lyons, Sofia. “Explaining the Implicit Quota on Women Executives.” New York Magazine, May 2015.
- Smedley, Tim. “The Evidence is Growing—There Really is a Business Case for Diversity.” Financial
Times, May 15, 2014.
- Hunt, Vivian, Dennis Layton, et al. “Why Diversity Matters?” McKinsey & Company, January 2015