Women, Gender, Sexuality Studies
Fall 2013 Courses

Critical Social Thought 118 Shattuck Hall 538-3466

CST 253/AFCNA 208 – Critical Race Theory
L. Wilson
Tuesday, Thursday  2:50-3:55 p.m.

This course examines the discursive relationship between race and law in contemporary U.S. society. Readings examine the ways in which racial bodies are constituted in the cultural and political economy of American society. The main objective is to explore the rules and social practices that govern the relationship of race to gender, nationality, sexuality, and class in U.S. courts and other cultural institutions. Thinkers covered include W.E.B. DuBois, Kimberle Crenshaw, Derrick Bell, and Richard Delgado, among others.

English 111 Shattuck Hall 538-2146

ENGL 374/FLMST 320 – Hitchcock and After
E. Young
Wednesday  1:15-4:05, Screening Monday 7:00-10:00 p.m.

This course will examine the films of Alfred Hitchcock and the afterlife of Hitchcock in contemporary U.S. culture. We will interpret Hitchcock films in a variety of theoretical frames, including feminist and queer theories, and in historical contexts including the Cold War. We will also devote substantial attention to the legacy of Hitchcock in remakes, imitations, and parodies. Hitchcock films may include Spellbound, Strangers on a Train, Rear Window, Vertigo, North by Northwest, Psycho, The Man Who Knew Too Much, Mamie, and The Birds; additional works by Brooks, Craven, De Palma, and Sherman.

French 115 Ciruti 538-2074

FRENCH 370 – Love for Sale:  The Figure of the Prostitute in French Literature
and Culture
C. Rivers
Wednesday  1:15-4:05 p.m.

This course will explore the figure of the prostitute, and the theme of prostitution, primarily in French novels of the nineteenth century. We will examine the ways in which the figure of the prostitute serves as a reflection of broader social and literary questions: female sexuality as represented by male authors, the link(s) between sex and money, the question of realism in narrative fiction, et al. In addition to literary texts, we will study secondary sources that place French prostitution in its historical and cultural context. Some films and an opera or two will be included as well.

Gender Studies 109 Shattuck 538-2257

GNDST 206/HIST 276 – U.S. Women’s History since 1890
Mary Renda
Tuesday, Thursday  8:35-9:50 a.m.

This course introduces students to the major themes of U.S. women's history from the 1880s to the present. We will look both at the experiences of a diverse group of women in the U.S. as well as the ideological meaning of gender as it evolved and changed over the twentieth century. We will chart the various meanings of womanhood (for example, motherhood, work, the domestic sphere, and sexuality) along racial, ethnic, and class lines and in different regions, and will trace the impact multiple identities have had on women's social and cultural activism.

GNDST 210 – Women and Gender in Islam
V. Gardner
Tuesday, Thursdah  1:15-2:30 p.m.

This course will examine a range of ways in which Islam has constructed women-and women have constructed Islam. We will study concepts of gender as they are reflected in classical Islamic texts, as well as different aspects of the social, economic, political, and ritual lives of women in various Islamic societies.

GNDST 221F/POLIT 233 – Invitation to Feminist Theory
E. Markovits
Tuesday, Thursday  10:00-11:15 a.m.

This course explores the overlapping dualities of the feminine and the masculine, the private and the public, the home and the world. We examine different forms of power over the body; the ways gender and sexual identities reinforce or challenge the established order; and the cultural determinants of "women's emancipation." We emphasize the politics of feminism, dealing with themes that include culture, democracy, and the particularly political role of theory and on theoretical attempts to grasp the complex ties and tensions between sex, gender, and power.

GNDST 250-01 – Land, Transnational Markets, and Democracy in
Women’s Lives and Activism
Tuesday, Thursday  1:15-2:30 p.m.
Chaia Heller

This course will address the predicaments of women who must negotiate local contexts shaped by transnational markets, changing patterns of agriculture and agro-forestry, and struggles over indigenous land rights. How have arguments about democracy shaped the struggles women take up locally, nationally, and transnationally in opposition to corporate power, national policies, and supranational agencies such as the World Trade Organization?

GNDST 250-02/POL 255F – The Politics of Abortion in the Americas
Cora Fernandez-Anderson
Tuesday, Thursday  11:30-2:45 p.m.

The Americas have been characterized by the strictness of their laws in the criminalization of abortion. In some countries abortion is criminalized even when the woman's life is at risk. What role have women's movements played in advancing abortion rights? What has mattered most for a movement's success, its internal characteristics or external forces? Has the way the movement framed its demands mattered? How has the political influence of the Catholic and Evangelical churches influenced policies in this area? We will answer these questions by exploring examples from across the region through primary and secondary sources.

GNDST 333A/ENGL 359 – Emily Dickinson in Her Times
Martha Ackmann
Tuesday  1:15-4:05 p.m.

This course will examine the writing of Emily Dickinson, both her poetry and her letters. We will consider the cultural, historical, political, religious, and familial environment in which she lived. Special attention will be paid to Dickinson's place as a woman artist in the nineteenth century. The class will meet at the Dickinson Museum (280 Main Street in Amherst and accessible by Five College bus). Enrollment is limited to ten students.

GNDST 333C/AFCNA 323 - Black Gender: Womanhood and Manhood in the African American Community
Betina Judd
Tuesday, Thursday 10:00-11:15 a.m.

This course engages with issues in popular culture, scholarship, and art that negotiate the complex terrain of Black gender. We question the concepts of manhood and womanhood and their intersection with racial constructs as categories of personhood through the critical gaze of African American Studies and Gender Studies. Black genders is identified as the ways in which gender, for African Americans, is always mediated by race.

GNDST 333F/ASIAN 340 – Love, Gender-Crossing, Women’s Supremacy:  A Reading of the Story of the Stone
Y. Wang
Wednesday 1:15-4:05 p.m.

A seminar on the eighteenth-century Chinese masterpiece The Story of the Stone and selected literary criticism in response to this work. Discussions will focus on love, gender-crossing, and women's supremacy and the paradoxical treatments of these themes in the novel. We will explore multiple aspects of these themes, including the sociopolitical, philosophical, and literary milieus of eighteenth-century China. We will also examine this novel in its relation to Chinese literary tradition in general and the generic conventions of premodern Chinese vernacular fiction in particular.

GNDST 333P/REL 332 – The Shakers
Jane Crosthwaite
Tuesday, Thursday  11:30-12:45 p.m.

This course will examine the historical and cultural creation of the Shaker society.  Shakers were convinced that celibacy was the primary teaching of the Christian message. In the process, they reconfigured traditional understanding of God and Christ to include major female components, and they constructed a series of communities, built worlds, to reflect a new social and political order. Their music, art, and extensive visionary material also carries their understanding of gender relations and sexual activity (or lack thereof) into all areas of life in America. They were patriotic, but did not vote; were pacifists, anti-slavery, and communitarian.

GNDST 333Q/PSYCH 319 – Gender and Domestic Labor
Francine Deutsch
Tuesday  1:15-4:05 p.m.

This course examines social psychology and sociological theories and research addressing why women do more housework and child care than men. It pays special attention to the situation of dual-earner families and considers class and ethnic differences on the nature of this inequality and the barriers to full equality at home.

GNDST 333S/ENGL 323 – Gender and Class in the Victorian Novel
Tuesday, Thursday  8:35-9:50 a.m.

This course will investigate how representations of gender and class serve as a structuring principle in the development of the genre of the Victorian novel in Britain. We will devote significant attention to the construction of Victorian femininity and masculinity in relation to class identity, marriage as a sexual contract, and the gendering of labor. The texts chosen for this course also reveal how gender and class are constructed in relation to other axes of identity in the period, such as race, sexuality, and national character. Novelists will include Dickens, Eliot, Gaskell, C. Bronte, and Hardy.  Supplementary readings in literary criticism and theory.

GNDST 333U/LATAM 387 – Latina/o Immigration
D. Hernandez
Monday, Wednesday  11:00-12:15 p.m.

The course provides an historical and topical overview of Latina/o migration to the United States. We will examine the economic, political, and social antecedents to Latin American migration, and the historical impact of the migration process in the U.S. Considering migration from Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean, we will discuss the social construction of race, the gendered nature of migration, migrant labor struggles, Latin American-U.S. Latino relations, immigration policy, and border life and enforcement. Notions of citizenship, race, class, gender, and sexuality will be central to our understanding of the complexity at work in the migration process.

GNDST 333W/SPAN 330 – Skin of a Woman:  Afro-Latina and Afro-Latin American Women Writers
D. Mosby
Tuesday  1:15-4:05 p.m.

(Taught in Spanish) With the growth of Afro-Latin American literary studies, there has been a growing interest in the recovery and the study of works by women of African descent. This course will examine the intersections of ethnic, cultural, national, class, sexual, and gender identities in representative texts (poems, short stories, essays, testimonios, and film) by Afro-Latina and Afro-Latin American women. We will discuss the construction and meaning of "race," color, and racialized gender roles. Secondary objectives include the development of research and writing skills and rudimentary orientation on various regional ethnic and feminist, cultural, and post/neocolonial theories.

GNDST 333X/SPAN 350 – Slanted Subjects:  Queer Theories and Literature in Latin America
T. Daly
Wednesday  1:15-4:05 p.m.

(In Spanish) This class will interrogate the limits and possibilities of talking about a slanted or queer subject position with the context of Latin American literature. Looking at texts from the Caribbean, Central America and South America, we will explore the construction of a queer subjectivity through literature, film and visual art. We will pay careful attention to the intersections of class, race, gender, and sexuality to speak of queerness not only as a sexual orientation, but also as a decolonial intervention. Readings will draw from philosophy as well as literature.

GNDST 333Y – Witches in the Modern Imagination
E. Rundle
Monday 1:15-4:05 p.m.

From the middle ages to the present day, witches have evoked both fear and fascination. Their fellowships (real or fantastic) challenged the prevailing power structures of church and state patriarchies and upset the ordered precepts of the modern world. This seminar offers an overview of the history of witchcraft in Atlantic cultures, with special attention to the early modern British and American colonial eras. We will examine figures of the witch in European art; religious and legal texts that document the persecution of sorcerers; and dramatic, literary, and cinematic representations of witches that have helped to shape our understanding of gender, nature, theatricality, and power.

GNDST 333Z – Thinking Through the Body:  Messy Feminisms, Queer Transfections, Cross-Species Connections
Christian Gundermann

The brain sends an impulse, the body executes it? Science examines, matter is inert? Men look, women are displayed? People train, dogs and horses obey? The sperm is mobile, the egg lays waiting? Spirit (leaders) infuse(s), nature (the masses) receive(s)? "Thinking through the body," challenges these assumptions that some feminists see as coming from the stranglehold of masculinist Reason. Transfections are different ways of reaching into each other the esthetics, epistemologies, and politics of which we will explore. The sex wars, the AIDS crisis, the neo-baroque, translation theory, eating habits, and zoontologies are just some of the contexts explored primarily through film, literature, and theory.

Theatre Arts Alice Wittington Rooke Theater 538-2118

THEAT 350 – Women in Design
V. James
Thursday  1:15-4:05 p.m.

This course will discuss women who have made a seminal contribution to the way we see and experience the visual world through design and material culture including - the performing arts, film, fashion and couture, the decorative arts, gardens and interiors. Students will familiarize themselves with the work of Coco Chanel and her female contemporaries, Gertrude Jekyll, Zaha Habib, Irene Sharaff, Loie Fuller, Sonya Delaunay, Lyubov Popova, Margaret Macdonald and Eileen Grey as well as many other groundbreaking luminaries. Students will research and analyze a designer's work, and create written and visual presentations.