WOMEN'S STUDIES PROGRAM COURSES - Fall 1999
WOST 187
Introduction to Women's Studies (ID)
Arlene Avakian
Monday, Wednesday 10:10 a.m. with Friday discussion

Lecture, discussion. Placing women's experiences at the center of interpretation, course introduces basic concepts and perspectives in Women's Studies. Focusing on women's lives with a particular emphasis on the ways in which gender interacts with race, class, sexual orientation and ethnicity. Central aim is to foster critical reading and thinking about women's lives, the ways in which the interlocking systems of colonialism, racism, sexism, ethnocentrism and heterosexism shape women's lives, and how women have resisted them.

WOST 187H
Introduction to Women's Studies (4 credits)
Alexandrina Deschamps
Tuesday, Thursday 9:30-10:45 a.m.

Orchard Hill Residential Course. Same description as WOST 187. Students will be involved in community service learning projects.

WOST 201
Critical Perspectives in Women's Studies
Lecture 1 - Tuesday, Thursday 1:00-2:15 p.m. Lisa Robinson
Lecture 2 - Tuesday, Thursday 11:15-12:30 p.m.Sima Fahid

Introduction to the fundamental questions and concepts of Women's Studies and to the basic intellectual tools of analysis integrating gender, class, race, and sexual orientation. Also addresses the multifaceted dimensions of women's lived experiences primarily in North America, with some comparative connections to women globally.

WOST 295C
Career and Life Choices for Women (2 cr.)
Karen Lederer
Monday 12:20-2:00 p.m.

Development of a systematic approach to career, educational, and life planning. Emphasis on prioritization of values and subsequent life choices. Elements of self exploration include: distinguishing between choosing a major and a career; identifying and expanding areas of career interest; identifying current skills and skills necessary for career of choice; relating knowledge, interests and skills to career goals; and current issues for women in the workforce. Career planning skills include budgeting, writing resumes and cover letters, interviewing, and use of various resources. Women's Studies students or seniors only. Mandatory Pass/Fail.

WOST 301
Theorizing Women's Issues
Alexandrina Deschamps
Tuesday, Thursday 1:00-2:15 p.m.

The objective of this course is to introduce ways of analyzing and reflecting on current issues and controversies in feminist thought within an international context. Main subject areas are: feminism and nationalism; culture as revolution and reaction; the construction of gender, race and sexuality; perspectives on pornography and racial hatred propaganda/speech/acts; and international sex trafficking and prostitution. Questions addressed are: What constitutes theory in Women's Studies? How does theory reflect, critique, challenge and change dominant sex/race/class power structures? What is theory's relationship to practice? What are the contemporary issues important to feminist/womanist theory? The common thread of this course is to provide students with some tools of analysis for addressing these issues. Oral class presentations, two short papers and one take-home exam. Prerequisite: WOST 201, Critical Perspectives.

WOST 391E/ECON 348
Political Economy of Women
Lisa Saunders
Tuesday,Thursday 9:30-10:45 a.m.

This course uses a wide range of women's issues to teach varied economic principles and theories. Popular women's topics in past semesters include women's increasing labor force participation; gender differences in hiring, promotions, and earnings; the growing poverty rate for female headed households; trade policy effects on women in the US and other countries; and race and class differences in the economic opportunities of women. Empirical assessment of women's work in the market and in the home in the US and other countries. Reconsideration of traditional issues of political economy, comparative economic history, and labor economics.

WOST 391G
Black Women & Activism
Instructor: Lisa Robinson
Tuesday, Thursday 9:30-10:45 a.m.

See the Course Guide addenda published in late summer/early fall for title and description. This course can be counted toward the Women of Color requirement for Women's Studies majors and minors.

WOST 391I
Seminar: Women's Health Issues
Instructor: Kathleen Zane
Tuesday, Thursday 2:30-3:45 p.m.

See the Course Guide addenda published in late summer/early fall for title and description.

WOST 391W
Writing: WOST Majors
Instructor: Jana Evans Braziel
Monday, Wednesday, Friday 10:10-11:00 a.m.

Fulfills University's Junior Year Writing Requirement. Offered fall semester only. Course acquaints students with the genres of writing within Women's Studies and is structured around a set of readings selected to represent a large variety of stylist approaches including scholarly writings in a number of fields, book and film reviews, polemical journalistic writing, letters to the editor, zines, web pages, personal and self- reflexive prose, newsletter prose, and conference reports. The readings will be short, and each will be intended to serve as a model of its kind to be analyzed, emulated, and/or critiqued. The course allows students to hone skills in modes of expository writing and argumentation useful for research and writing in a variety of fields.

WOST 392M
Asian American Women in Popular Culture
Instructor: Kathleen Zane

WOST 394A
Women in Islam
Instructor: Sima Fahid
Wednesday 3:35-6:05 p.m.

This course can be counted toward the Women of Color requirement for Women's Studies majors and minors.

WOST 395H
US Women's Lives in Contexts: Reading and Creating Political Autobiography, Honors (4 cr.)
Arlene Avakian
Monday 1:00-3:30 p.m.

A course in which students will both read women's autobiographies and oral histories as well as do some of their own autobiographical work. The class will explore the ways in which lives are embedded with their social, political and cultural contexts and the ways in which people construct their lives. We will have a particular focus on the ways in which gender, race, class, ethnicity and sexual orientation impact on lives and the ways these social forces interact with each other. Focusing on their own lives in their contexts, students will create autobiographical work which could take a variety of forms; e.g. written, oral, visual, or dramatic. Readings will focus on contemporary US women, public figures, and "ordinary" women.

WOST 591H/JAPAN 560H
Geisha
Doris Bargen
Tuesday 1:00-3:45 p.m.

This seminar explores the unique culture of the geisha and other Japanese women entertainers from the high-ranking courtesans of medieval times to modern bar hostesses. A peculiar paradox surrounds geisha: they embody Japaneseness and yet they are exotic even to the Japanese. Trained in the classical arts of music and dance, they cater to a male elite while maintaining total control over an expensive enterprise run exclusively by women. This course can be counted toward the Women of Color requirement for Women's Studies majors and minors.

WOST 792A
Theory: Critical Race Feminism
Alexandrina Deschamps
Monday 4:00-6:30 p.m.

This class will be multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary in that it will draw on an extensive range of writings of and by women and men. Extending beyond national borders, it will also involve global issues, specific case studies, multiplicative theory of analysis and praxis. Some questions: What historical arguments are made to bolster the various author's claims? What are the theoretical contributions of the authors? What are the practical aspects? What are the descriptive, analytical, and reformative notions? What are the interrelationships between all the concepts? What would be the theoretical components of a critical race feminist jurisprudence of resistance? Critical race feminism will also examine the role that narrative or storytelling technique - an essential part of the critical race theory - play as method for critical race feminists.


Departmental
Component
Women of Color
Graduate Level
Summer 1999
Amherst College
HampshireCollege
Mount Holyoke
Smith College