WGS 2100 Intro to Gender & Sexuality Studies

Bonnie Hagerman

An introduction to gender and LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer) studies, including the fields of women’s studies, feminist studies, & masculinity studies. Students will examine historical movements, theoretical issues, & contemporary debates, especially as they pertain to issues of inequality & to the intersection of gender, race, class, sexuality, & nationalism. Emphasis will vary according to the interdisciplinary expertise & research focus of the instructor.

Special Note: Required for all WGS majors and minors, Intro courses do not count toward concentrations.

WGS 2125 Race and Power in Gender and Sexuality

Matthew Chin

This course offers a study of race and racialization in relation to gender and sexuality.  We will consider how the concept of race shapes relationships between gendered selfhood and society, how it informs identity and experiences of the erotic, and how racialized gender and sexuality are created, maintained and monitored. Applying an interdisciplinary perspective, we will consider how race and power are reproduced and resisted through gender and sexuality, individually, nationally, and internationally.  Topics may include media, religion, sport, literature, family and politics.

WGS 2600 Human Sexualities

Lisa Speidel

Examines human sexuality from psychological, biological, behavioral, social, and historical perspectives. Topics include sexual research and theoretical perspectives, sexual anatomy and physiology, sexual health, intimacy, communication, patterns of sexual response and pleasure and sexual problems and therapies. Course will also include examination of the development of sexuality and the intersections of other identities, gender identity, sexual orientation, sexuality and the law, sexual assault, and other social issues in sexuality. This course will focus on creating a safe environment for honest and authentic conversations about the issues.  Confidentiality and respect will be emphasized to create a community of trust. Students will learn about these issues of sexuality through discussion, experiential activities, film, readings, research, reflective writing and guest speakers.

Course Category: Sexuality Concentration

WGS 2700 Men and Masculinities

Lisa Speidel

Typically, men are dealt with in a way that casually presents them as representative of humanity.   This course addresses the various ways that men are also “gendered,” and can be the subject of inquiries of gender, sexuality, inequality, and privilege in their own right.

Course Category: Gender Concentration

WGS 3100 Intro to WGS Theory

Isabel Gonzales

Explores major debates, key ideas, and historical developments in women, gender, & sexuality theory. Students will gain familiarity with queer, trans, and feminist theory, including Black, Native, socialist, crip, and other approaches.  Will consider the different methods that gender & sexuality scholars have used to explain the social world, and why such explanations are vital to WGS. Course emphasizes reading, discussion,and critical writing.

WGS 3125 Transnational Feminism

Maryam Zehtabi

This course places women, feminism, and activism in a transnational perspective, and offers students the opportunity to examine how issues considered critical to the field of gender studies are impacting women’s lives globally in contemporary national contexts. We will look closely at how violence, economic marginality, intersections of race and gender, and varied strategies for development are affecting women in specific geographical locations.

WGS 3305 Issues in LGBTQ Studies

Isabel Gonzales

This course is an interdisciplinary analysis of LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer) Studies.  We will study  historical events and political, literary, and artistic figures and works; contemporary social and political issues; the meaning and development of sexual and gender identities; and different disciplinary definitions of meaning and knowledge.

WGS 3500 Research and Methods in WGS

Bonnie Hagerman

 This course develops fundamental skills for critical thinking, researching, writing, and communicating in WGS. Students will learn methods for finding and analyzing sources, approaches to framing arguments, and skills for effective written and oral communication.  Seminars are offered on a variety of topics.  This class fulfills the Second Writing Requirement and Enhanced Writing Requirement.

WGS 3559 New Course in WGS: Intersectionality

Isabel Gonzales

What is intersectionality? Though the term has gained significant mainstream recognition since Kimberlé Williams Crenshaw first published on “intersectionality” in the late 1980s, the complexities and implications of intersectional analysis have not mainstreamed with the term. This course explores the structural, rather than identitarian, linkages that intersectionality seeks to reveal, exposing the linkages between culture, the state, and power.

WGS 3897 Gender Violence and Social Justice

Lisa Speidel

This course begins by investigating how scholars from a wide array of disciplines define gender-based violence (GBV), its prevalence, causes, and consequences. Next, we focus on several areas where gender -based violence is pervasive, such as universities, poor neighborhoods, during war, and in the global economy. The final section of the course examines responses to GBV by health care providers, feminists, and governments.

WGS 3900 Gender & Sexuality in Islamic Culture

Maryam Zehtabi

This course examines the politics of gender and sexuality in various Muslim societies since the 19th century. It covers a range of topics and themes, including historical, theological, political, and anthropological accounts of gender and sexuality discourses; various feminist movements; and sexuality, marriage, family, masculinity and LGBTQ issues.

WGS 4500 WGS Capstone

Bonnie Hagerman

This seminar for majors pursues advanced study of a particular topic in WGS. Students conceptualize, research, and produce a substantial independent project that demonstrates their competency in the interdisciplinary field of WGS. This course will enable majors to revisit foundational ideas, incorporate what they have learned into their independent research projects, and demonstrate their accumulated skills in critical thinking and communication.

WGS 4559 Topic: Global History of Intimacies

Matthew Chin

This course focuses on embodied forms of closeness that take shape across different spaces and times. It will consider theories of history, temporality, intimacy, and globality and explore methods of historical inquiry that may be used to construct accounts of intimate relations in the past. It will then mobilize these theories and methods to analyze historical case studies of intimacy in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries in relationship to African enslavement and Asian indentureship in the Americas as well as US-Philippine and French-Algerian imperialisms. Inspired by postcolonial, feminist, and queer approaches, our critical and interdisciplinary conversations will allow us to consider the complexities, contradictions, and problems that arise from attempts to both describe and analyze formations of intimacy in the past. 

WGS 4800 Advanced Theory Seminar: Queer Theory

Doug Meyer

 Introduces students to some key & controversial theoretical texts that make up the emerging field of queer theory. The approach  will be interdisciplinary, w/ an emphasis on literary, social, & aesthetic criticisms that may shift according the instructor's areas of expertise. Active reading & informed discussion will be emphasized for the often unseen, or submerged, aspects of sexuality embedded in cultural texts, contexts, & litterateurs.     

WGS 4820 Advanced Theory Seminar: Bleck Feminist Theory

Lanice Avery

This course critically examines key ideas, issues, and debates in contemporary Black feminist thought. With a particular focus on Black feminist understandings of intersectionality and womanism, the course examines how Black feminist thinkers interrogate specific concepts including Black womanhood, sexual mythologies and vulnerabilities, class distinctions, colorism, leadership, crime and punishment, and popular culture.

WGS 7500 Approaches to Gender & Sexuality Studies

Tiffany King

This course is a graduate-only advanced introduction to the field of contemporary feminist and queer theories, especially in areas where these two fields have made critical interventions. We will survey contemporary feminist and queer epistemology, subject formation, ethics and politics. The main pedagogical goal of the course is to provide students with a foundation in the methods and content of feminist and queer theory. The seminar approaches these two closely related fields from a multidisciplinary perspective by asking a series of questions. What is a woman? What is gender? Sex? Sexuality? What is theory and who can theorize? What is the relationship between theory and the body, and the institutions and structures that shape our everyday lives, such as the family and the economy? The course will not answer these questions definitively, but instead will encourage students to ask more specific versions of these questions and to develop their own research interests related to women, gender and sexuality.