Continuing and Professional Education

This listing is meant as a guide to courses offered that have content on gender and/or sexuality through Continuing Education. For a full listing of courses offered, please refer to the website. Courses are online unless otherwise stated.

Summer 2012
Session 1 – 5/14/12 – 6/4
Session 2 – 6/5/12 – 7/10/12
Session 3 – 7/11/12 – 8/14/12

(100-level courses count toward the WGSS minor but NOT the WGSS major

ANTHRO 205 – Inequality and Oppression (Session 3)
Julie Skogsbergh

The roots of racism and sexism and the issues they raise. The cultural, biological, and social contexts of race and gender and examination of biological variation, genetic determinism, human adaptation, and the bases of human behavior.

COMM 288 – Gender, Sex and Representation (5/28 – 7/6)
Sut Jhally

This course will examine the relationship between commercialized systems of representation and the way that gender and sexuality are thought of and organized in the culture. In particular, we will look at how commercial imagery impacts upon gender identity and the process of gender socialization. Central to this discussion will be the related issues of sexuality and sexual representation (and the key role played by advertising).

ENGLISH 132 – Gender, Sexuality, Literature and Culture (Sessions 1,2,3)
Ashley Nadeau, Christopher Hennessy, Marissa Carerre

Literature treating the relationship between man and woman. Topics may include: the nature of love, the image of the hero and heroine, and definitions, past and present, of the masculine and feminine. Please check our website for updated textbooks information. Please check SPIRE for textbook information for your section.

FRENCH 280 – Love & Sex in French Culture (Session 2)
Patrick Mensah

Course taught in English. This course offers a broad historical overview of the ways in which love and erotic behavior in French culture have been represented and understood in the arts, especially in Literature and, more recently, in film, from the middle ages to the twentieth century.

PUBP&ADM 697LB – LGBT Social Science and Policy Issues (Session III)
Lee Badgett

This course analyzes the use of social science research in public policy debates and court cases related to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people in the U.S. and other countries. In particular, the course will focus on the role of social science research on debates about employment discrimination against LGBT people, LGBT parenting, the legal recognition of same-sex couples, and the process of social and policy change.

SOC 222 – The Family (Session 2)
Oyman Basaran

First part: historical transformations in family life (relationships between husbands and wives, position and treatment of children, importance of kinship ties); second part: the contemporary family through life course (choice of a mate, relations in marriage, parenthood, breakup of the family unit).

SOCIOL 395K – Domestic Violence (Session 2)
Laura Hickman
Prior to the 1970s, domestic violence in America was widely viewed as a private matter in which public intervention was inappropriate except under the most extreme circumstances. Over the past several decades, however, domestic violence has been increasingly perceived and responded to by the public as a criminal matter. Take a detailed look at patterns and trends in domestic violence in contemporary America, explore theoretical perspectives about its causes, and examine the domestic violence reform movement, paying special attention to research that tries to assess the actual effectiveness of criminal justice reforms in reducing domestic violence. Elective course in the Criminal Justice/Sociology track and in the Criminal Justice Studies Online Certificate Program but open to all.
WOMENSST 187 – Gender, Sexuality and Culture (Session 2)
Katherine Jones

Placing women's experiences at the center of interpretation, this class introduces basic concepts and key areas of gender both historically and contemporaneously.  It is an inter-disciplinary, trans-disciplinary, and cross cultural study of gender as well as an overview of theoretical perspectives of its intersection with other social constructs of difference (race/ethnicity, class, sexuality, and age).  We will move beyond the theme of "gender difference" and examine the ongoing debate about the politics of gender inequality and inequity in our societies and cultures.  Students will engage in critical reading and thinking about these interlocking systems which have shaped and influenced the historical, cultural, social, political, and economical contexts of our lives.  Specific attention will be given to resistance of those gendered inequalities, and the various ways that social movements have created new systems of change by engaging in national and global transformational politics.

WOMENSST 293C – Women, Gender, Sexuality in the Middle East (Session 2)
Gizem Zencirci

This course provides an overview of the issues facing women, and sexual minorities in the Middle East. The purpose is to familiarize students with gender categories and social constructions of sexuality that people in this region face. By completing this course, students will know about politics of veiling, honor killing, non-normative sexualities, women’s movements, and secular and Islamic feminism through case studies from Turkey, Iran, Morocco, Kurdistan, Egypt and Europe.  Fulfills the Women of Color requirement outside the U.S. for WGSS majors and minors.

WOMENSST 397DD – Pornography, Gender and the Law (Session 3)
Tonia St. Germain

This course analyzes one type of mass communication that tells stories about what sex is, can, and should be--pornography. For the purposes of this course, pornography is defined as material sold in stores, presented as movies or videos, and offered by telephone or over the Internet for the purpose of producing sexual arousal for mostly male customers. The course considers the legal struggle for control presented in the obscenity debates: What happens when two deeply held American values, freedom of expression and freedom from discrimination, clash? People have the right to free speech as well as the right to equal treatment and protection under the law. But when one person's pornographic free speech harms another person on the basis of race, ethnicity, religion, gender, or sexual orientation, does it become hate speech and subject to regulation? Are such harms the price we pay for a commitment to free speech in America? Who is paying and who is profiting? The course considers the answers by exploring the production and consumption of pornography in a legal, social, economic, and political context and challenges us to consider the effect of the use of pornography in society.   This class was formerly offered as LEGAL 397DD and cannot be retaken. 

(WGSS majors and minors must concentrate their work on gender.  100-level courses count toward the WGSS minor but NOT the WGSS major)

ANTHRO 106 – Culture Through Film (Sessions 1 and 3)
Katharine Kirakosian and Sofia Kalo

Exploration of different societies and cultures, and of the field of cultural anthropology, through the medium of film. Ethnographic and documentary films; focus on gender roles, ethnicity, race, class, religion, politics and social change.


COMM 336 – Consumer Culture (Session 2)
Emily West

Formerly listed as COMM 397L. If you have already taken COMM 397L you cannot take this course. The mass media are frequently criticized for their role in creating or perpetuating materialism and a consumer culture. This course will consider different theoretical and disciplinary approaches to understanding our consumer culture and the mass media's place in it. Topics will include the influence of advertisers on a media environment that promotes consumption; the experience of shopping; the exercise of taste through consumption; the relationship between consumerism, citizenship, and patriotism; consumer rights; and the meaning of consumption for economically disadvantaged groups. COMM 222 has been re-numbered 122. If you do not have a pre-requisite but would like to enroll, email the instructor ( for permission.

COMPLIT 141 – Good and Evil:  East and West (Sessions 1,2,3)
Emir Benli, Barry Spence, Patricia Matthews

The imaginative representation of good and evil in Western and Eastern classics, folktales, childrens stories and 20th-century literature. Cross-cultural comparison of ethical approaches to moral problems such as the suffering of the innocent, the existence of evil, the development of a moral consciousness and social responsibility, and the role of faith in a broken world. Contemporary issues of nuclear war, holocaust, AIDS, abortion, marginal persons, anawim and unwanted children. Please order the correct textbooks based on your section.

EDUC 210 – Social Diversity in Education  (Session 1)
Andrea Domingue

Focus on issues of social identity, social and cultural diversity, and societal manifestations of oppression. Draws on interdisciplinary perspectives of social identity development, social learning theory, and sociological analyses of power and privilege within broad social contexts.

HISTORY 170 – Indian Peoples of North America (Session 2)
Alice Nash

The diverse histories of indigenous peoples in North America from their origins to the present. Focus on indigenous perspectives, examining social, economic, and political issues experienced by indigenous peoples. Emphasis on diversity, continuity, change, and self-determination.

HISTORY 397T – Bread and Roses:  American Tapestry (Session 2)
Bruce Watson

American labor history features many long, bloody strikes but none as startling or emblematic as the 1912 textile strike in Lawrence, Massachusetts. Sparked by a mere 32-cent a week pay cut, 30,000 workers from 50 nationalities, led by the Industrial Workers of the World, challenged the giant American Woolen Company in a strike that featured a dynamite plot, trumped up murder charges, and a poignant exodus of strikers’ children sent to sympathetic families in New York. Yet still the strike went on. This class will explore the strike’s personalities (Big Bill Haywood, Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, mill tycoon William Wood), its chess-like strategies, and its impact on America in the Progressive Era. Readings will participants’ memoirs, and online newspapers and magazines from 1912.

LEGAL 391S – Islamaphobia, Multiculturism and the Law (Session I)
Christopher Sweetapple

Multiculturalism has become both highly contested and deeply entrenched in contemporary societies in North America, Australia and Western Europe. As a political strategy to manage the social friction between minorities and majorities in increasingly diverse nation-states, multiculturalism has come under attack from both the right and left poles of the political spectrum throughout the world for its ostensible failures. Muslims have occupied a central place in these local, national and international debates. The threat of Islamic terrorism has provoked a measurable rise among European and North American nationals of what scholars and activists have somewhat controversially named "Islamophobia". This course surveys scholarship about this vexed role of Muslim minorities in what is conventionally called "the West", paying special attention to how the domain of law has become the defining terrain in which these debates play out and are contested. Drawing on anthropology, sociology, history and legal studies scholarship, we will explore such topics as: the links between anti-Muslim attitudes and racism, anti-Semitism and xenophobia; legacies of colonialism and the impacts of transnational migration; the history of multicultural policies; contemporary gender and sexual politics; secularism, blasphemy and the limits of free speech; the interpenetration of immigration and criminal justice; profiling and terrorism.

PUBHLTH 160 – My Body/My Health (Session 3)
Christie Barcelos

Principles of health promotion and personal wellness with emphasis on stress management, nutrition, physical fitness, substance abuse prevention, prevalence of sexually transmitted diseases, and human sexuality.

SOC 103 – Social Problems (Session 3)
Mary Scherer

Introduction to sociology. America's major social problems--past and present--are examined. These include crime, mental health, drug addiction, family tensions and inequalities based on race, gender, ethnicity and social class.