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Women's and Gender Studies

This course is designed to introduce students to the key issues, questions, and debates in the interdisciplinary field of Women's and Gender Studies. Central to the course will be a focus on the social construction of identity and the myriad ways in which gender, race, class, sexuality, and nationality work to constitute people's experiences. Fall, Spring.

An interdisciplinary examination of the issue of abortion in the United States. Can one be a feminist and oppose legal access to abortion? Students will explore the legal, theological, and social history informing the abortion debate, with an aim to appreciate why resistance to reproductive choice exists and persists. Prerequisites: ITW 101. Spring, alternate years.

When the body is read as text, eating disorders are manifestations of cultural ideas that communicate to the self and the masses. This interdisciplinary course examines eating disorders through the optic of feminism, taking into consideration feminist discourse, theories of consumption and subjectivity formation, psychology, sociology, and literary analyses. Prerequisites: ITW 101. Fall.

An interdisciplinary exploration of spirituality and sexuality, drawing from history, religion, as well as women's and gender studies. Key questions: How are institutions of religion socially constructed? How do they affect women's ways of knowing, women's spirituality, and women's sexuality? What are new ways of representing spirituality as social inquiry? Prerequisites: ITW 101. Spring, alternate years.

We take an interdisciplinary approach to studying representations of gender (as well as class, race, and sexuality) in the mass media and popular culture. Using literature from cultural studies, communication, sociology, and other disciplines, we explore dominant ideologies and how they are perpetuated (or not) in media products. Prerequisites: ITW 101. Fall.

How did women's Holocaust experiences differ from those of men? An interdisciplinary exploration of gender in Central European families, in ghettos, camps, and resistance, this course examines connections between the Holocaust and present day manifestations of anti-Semitism, sexism, homophobia, and nationalism. Readings are drawn from history, women's studies, and Holocaust memoirs. Cross-listed as IIHGS 254. Occasionally.

Interdisciplinary study of a specific issue or topic within the field of Women's and Gender Studies. Students will develop skills in critical reading and critical thinking. May be repeated for credit as topics change. Prerequisites: ITW 101. Offered occasionally.

This interdisciplinary course explores the experiences of women of color using feminist scholarship from literature, sociology, history, and women's studies. Analyzes the history of social movements that have influenced the construction of the category "women of color" and articulates a critique of the category of "whiteness." Prerequisites: 24 credits in ISP, including ITW 101 and IQL 101. Occasionally.