Women's Studies Courses Fall 1997
WSTP 140-01,02,03 Introduction to Women's Studies
This course provides a theoretical framework for examining questions of sexual difference in history, culture, and contemporary society. Students will learn central concepts and research methods in Women's Studies and use them to examine such topics as family, religion, work, sexuality, and social change.
WSTP 200-01 Feminist Theory
This course will examine a variety of feminist theories--from eighteenth century writers such as Wollenstonecraft and Mill through the radical feminist discourse of Ti-Grace Atkinson and Shulamith Firestone to contemporary writers and activists. The class will focus on central and recurring debates within feminist theory and practice: debates between essentialism and social constructionism; between liberal reformism and radical transformation; between the politics of sameness and the politics of difference. We will also examine how feminist theories have attempted to reckon with the challenges of poststructuralism and the critiques offered by women of color. The intersections of race/ethnicity and class with the category of gender will also offer a central analytic strand throughout the course.
Professor Suzanna Walters
Cross List: SocI-290-01
WSTP 203-01 Cultural Representations of Women
Designed both as part of the Core in Women's Studies and as an interdisciplinary topic in English, this course explores images of women in art, literature, history, philosophy, films, and advertising. Focusing on theories of representation, the class will analyze cultural paradigms and subversions of them, examine connections between power and aesthetics, look at popular culture as prescription as well as description, and understand the conflict between woman as art form and women as producers of art and culture.
Cross List: Engl-278-01
WSTP 211-01 Seminar: Internship, Women and Politics (Practicum)
This course focuses on the differences race, ethnicity, and class make in women's relationships to power and social change. Questions are raised about how women can be empowered and participate more effectively in political processes. Each semester twenty students select internships in advocacy groups, non-profit organizations, and federal or D.C. government agencies which advance women's interests. Students are required to do nine hours of volunteer work each week of the semester. Studies include required readings, journal writing, construction of an ethnography, the compilation of an annotated bibliography, and one experiential research paper.
Cross List: SocI-211-01
WSTP 207-01 Gender and Science
Gender is a powerful category of human existence, defining individual as well as social identity. Gender's definition, which is linked to socially determined sex roles, figures strongly in society's conception of its own stability. Yet gender's definition is not monolithic. Notions of femininity and masculinity differ across cultures; they have also differed through time. Spanning several centuries and cultures, this course examines how "objective" knowledge--science and medicine--shapes and is shaped by social notions of gender. Issues include: the engendering of scientific knowledge and work; scientific and medical definitions of sex, gender, and the woman's body; the role of women in science, and feminist perspectives on science and women scientists.
WSTP 210-01 Women's Representations of War in the 20th Century
Among the topics to be considered will be women's theoretical and critical reflections on war and peace; how race, sexual orientation, and social class intersect with the ways in which war is both experienced and represented by women; women's experiences as witnesses and participants in 20th century warfare (as combatants and revolutionaries; as nurses and war-workers; as internees, refuges, and escapees; as recorders and reporters of conflict, etc.); and women's prophetic or fantastic visions of war. We will be watching excerpts from a number of commercial and non-commercial films and videos in class; we will also study works of art by female painters and photographers. This course will be conducted through small and large group discussions, not lectures. There will be several short, informal "response" papers, and the writing and revising of a major, formal essay will also be an important part of the course.
WSTP 251-01 Women and the Law
This course will introduce students to the law of sex discrimination and women's rights, with particular emphasis on issues of employment discrimination (including sexual harassment), violence against women, marriage and divorce law, and reproductive and abortion rights. It will consider the assumptions and biases that have shaped the law in these areas, tracing the historical development of constitutional and statutory protection for women's rights, and exploring feminist and liberal critiques of the current state of the law. Finally, while the course's primary focus will be on American law, it will also introduce students to other countries' approaches to rape law and abortion rights, comparing and contrasting the assumptions about women that underlie different legal systems.
WSTP 253-01 Women's International Human Rights
Women's human rights issues have been conspicuously absent from post-World War II efforts to promote and protect human rights. This course looks to the critical work of activists and scholars from around the world to assess the human rights framework in terms of its successes and failures in advancing women's rights. We will examine country-specific cases of human rights abuses and activism in order to develop an understanding of the nature of sex-specific human rights abuses, including violence against women in conflict, trafficking of women and institutional discrimination and the different means used to combat them.
WSTP 254-01 Women and Work: Historical, Legal, and Cultural Perspectives on the Employment of American Women
This course covers the topics of gender stereotypes and work, the history of women in the work place, the intersection of race and sex on the job, the work/family conflict, the glass ceiling and the debate on affirmative action, comparable worth, sexual harrassment, and sexual orientation at work. The course presents historical, legal, and cultural perspectives on the employment of American women through an anthology of historical materials, essays on views of women and women's expeiences in the workforce and legal cases.
Professor Laura Fentonmiller
WSTP 301-01 Tutorial: Women's Studies
This tutorial allows the student to design and arrange his/her own independent study course in Women's Studies.
Time and Professor to be announced.
WSTP 320-01 Seminar: Women in International Development
This course is a cross-cultural survey of the status of women in developing countries. As such it is an exploration of the historical and contemporary events that have shaped international development, with analyses of development theories which identify salient issues in women's lives. The cross-cultural focus examines women of color in the western world, and elsewhere in the "Third World" through some of these issues: agriculture, health, nutrition, urban living, education and communications, family planning, women's organizations, technology, legal statutes, energy, migration and employment, religion, and public administration. The assumptions of this course are that (1) it is possible to characterize the role of women in the development process; (2) women as a corporate entity endure unique problems; and (3) they require special measures to address their developmental needs.
AMTH 281-01: Seminar: 20th Century Women Artists Professor Heller
CHIN 332-01: Images of Women in Chinese Films Professor Zhang
ENGL 121-01: Literature of Medieval Women Professor Wickham-Crowley
ENGL 141-01: 18th Century Women Writers Professor Temple
FREN 461-01: French Women Writers: Renaissance/Classical/Romantic Professor Morris
GOVT 346-01: Power & Powerlessness Professor Craswell Juniors & Seniors only
HEST 190-01: Women's Health Issues Professor Fishbein
HIST 320-01: Gender & the Family in China Professor Benedict
NURS 549-01: Cancer Prevention & Control Profesor Burnett
SOCI 145-01: Family and Society Professor Jones
THEO 047-01: Womanist Theology Professor Hayes
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