SMITH COLLEGE COURSES - SPRING 2010

Study of Women and Gender 24 Hatfield 585-3390
Afro-American Studies 102 Wright Hall 585-3572
Anthropology 15 Wright Hall 585-3500
Classical Languages and Literature Dewey Hall II 585-3480
East Asian Languages and Literature 105 Pierce Hall 585-3320
English Languages and Literature 101 Wright Hall 585-3302
Government 15 Wright Hall 585-3500
History 13 Wright Hall 585-3702
Interdisciplinary Studies 207B Seelye 585-3420
Psychology Burton Hall 585-3805
Religion and Biblical Literature Dewey 585-3662
Russian Studies Hatfield 585-3402
Sociology 12 Wright Hall 585-3520
Spanish and Portuguese Hatfield Hall 585-3450
Theatre T204 Theatre Bldg 585-3229

SWG 150 - Introduction to the Study of Women and Gender
Martha Ackelsberg, Elisabeth Armstrong, Daniel Rivers
Monday, Wednesday, Friday  11:00-12:10 p.m.


An introduction to the interdisciplinary field of the study of women and gender through a critical examination of feminist histories, issues and practices.  Focus on the U.S. with some attention to the global context.  Primarily for first and second year students. 

SWG 205 - Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender History in the United States, 1945-2003
Daniel Rivers
Monday, Wednesday 1:10-2:30 p.m.

This course offers an overview of LGBT culture and history in the United States from 1945 to 2003. We will use a variety of historical and literary sources, including films and sound clips, to examine changes in lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered lives and experiences during the last half of the twentieth century. The course will encourage the students to think about intersections of race, sexuality, and class, and how these categories have affected sexual minority communities. The course will also explore the legal and cultural impact sexual minority communities have had in the United States.

SWG 252 - Colloquium:  Debates in Feminist Theory: “Solidarity”
Elisabeth Armstrong
Monday, Wednesday, Friday  10:00-10:50 a.m.


This course provides a focused, historical understanding of vital debates in feminist theory.  Contentious and challenging points of view will center on one analytic theme, although that theme will change from year to year.  This course will cover topics such as “the subject,” solidarity, the body, nation/identity, and translation.  Readings, lectures and discussions will ground widely differing perspectives, modes of analysis and arguments in their political, social and historical context.  Permission of the instructor required.  

SWG 260 - The Cultural Work of Memoir
Susan Van Dyne
Monday, Wednesday 2:40-4:00 p.m.


This course will explore how queer subjectivity intersects with gender, ethnicity, race, and class.  How do individuals from groups marked as socially subordinate or non-normative use life-writing to claim a right to write?  The course uses contemporary life-writing narratives, published in the U.S. over roughly the last 30 years, to explore the relationships between queer subjectivities, politicized identities, communities, and social movements.  Students also practice writing memoirs.  Prerequisites: SWG 150, and a college-level literature course. 

SWG 270 - Documenting Lesbian Lives
Kelly Anderson
Monday, Wednesday, Friday  11:00-12:10 p.m.

Grounding our work in the current scholarship in lesbian history, this course will explore lesbian communities, cultures, and activism.   While becoming familiar with the existing narratives about lesbian lives, students will be introduced to the method of oral history as a key documentation strategy in the production of lesbian history.  Our texts will include secondary literature on late 20th century lesbian culture and politics, oral history theory and methodology, and primary sources from the Sophia Smith Collection (SSC). Students will conduct, transcribe, edit, and interpret their own interviews for their final project.  The course objectives are: an understanding of modern lesbian movements and cultures from a historical perspective, basic skills in and knowledge of oral history methods, and the rich experience of being historians by creating new records of lesbian lives. 

SWG 312 - Queer Resistances:  Identities, Communities, and Social Movements
Nancy Whittier
Thursday  1:00-2:50 p.m.


How do we know what it means to identify as lesbian, gay, queer, bisexual, or transgender?  Why do these terms mean different things to different people and in different contexts?  How does claiming or refusing to claim a sexual identity affect community formation or social change?   This seminar will explore constructions of queer collective identities, communities, and social protest. We will pay explicit attention to how queer identities, communities, and movements are racialized, shaped by class, gendered, and contextual. Drawing on historical, theoretical, narrative, and ethnographic sources, we will examine multiple sites of queer resistance including local communities, academic institutions, media, the state, social movement organizations, and the Internet.  We will examine the consequences of various theories of gender, sexuality, and resistance for how we interpret the shapes that queer, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender identity, community, and social movements take.  Prerequisites: SWG 150, one additional course in the major and permission of the instructor. 

AAS 366 - Black Women, Work and Family
Riché Barnes
Tuesday  1:00 – 2:50 p.m.


Black women have always been in a precarious position as it pertains to work and family.  They have been portrayed as hard workers and “lazy” welfare queens.  They have held the position of cold, callous mothers to their own children, and loving mammy’s to white children.  They have been hyper-sexualized erotic jezebels and domineering, unfeminine matriarchs.  And when the work and family sociological literature seeks answers to the ways in which Americans balance the challenges of work and family in the contemporary global economy, African American women and their families are invisible.  This seminar will provide students with an analytic framework to understand the ways gender, race, and class intersect in defining the world of work in our society and affect the available choices African American women have to best support their families.  Utilizing ethnography, fiction, film, and forms of popular culture, we will explore policies that affect both the family and institutions of work, explore the ways that black men and women balance the demands of family, and pay particular attention to the development of gender roles and strategies that affect African American women's work and family decisions.

AAS 366- Ida B. Wells and the Struggle against Racial Violence
Paula Giddings
Monday  7:00 – 9:00 p.m.


Ida B. Wells (1862-1931) was a black investigative journalist who began, in 1892, the nation's first anti-lynching campaign. In her deconstruction of the reasons for, and response to, violence--and particularly lynching--she also uncovered the myriad components of racism in a formative period of race relations that depended on ideas of emerging social sciences, gender identity, and sexuality. The course will follow Wells's campaign, and in the process study the profound intersections of race, class, gender and sexuality which have shaped American culture and history.

ANT 271 - Globalization and Transnationalism in Africa
Caroline Melly
Tuesday, Thursday  9:00-10:20 a.m.

This course considers the shifting place of Africa in a global context from various perspectives. Our goal will be to understand the global connections and exclusions that constitute the African continent in the new millennium. We will explore topics such as historical connections, gender, popular culture, global economy, development, commodities, health and medicine, global institutions, violence and the body, the postcolonial state, religion, science and knowledge, migration and diaspora, the Internet and communications, and modernity.

CLT 229 - The Renaissance Gender Debate
Ann Jones
Tuesday, Thursday  1:10-2:30 p.m.

In “La Querelle des Femmes” medieval and Renaissance writers (1350-1650) took on misogynist ideas from the ancient world and early Christianity: woman as failed man, irrational animal, fallen Eve.  Writers debated women’s sexuality (insatiable or purer than men’s?), marriage (the hell of nagging wives or the highest Christian state?), women’s souls (nonexistent or subtler than men’s?), female education (a waste of time or a social necessity?).  In the context of the social and cultural changes fuelling the polemic, we will analyze the many literary forms it took, from Chaucer’s Wife of Bath to Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew, women scholars’ dialogues, such as Moderata Fonte’s The Worth of Women, and pamphlets from the popular press.  Some attention to the battle of the sexes in the visual arts.  Recommended: a previous course in classics, medieval or Renaissance studies or Women’s Studies. 

CLT 267 - Contemporary African Women’s Drama
Katwiwa Mule
Tuesday, Thursday  9:00-10:20 a.m.

A study of contemporary drama by African women as a site of cultural expression and resistance in postcolonial Africa. We shall study the use of drama to expose and confront the realities of women’s lives, to subvert dominant gender constructs and mock rigid power structures. How are aspects of performance in African oral traditions interwoven with elements of European drama? How are these playwrights’ visions of social change both enabled and restricted by the ideological frameworks of nationalism? Readings, some translated from French, Swahili and other African languages, will include Ama Ata Aidoo’ s The Dilemma of a Ghost, Efua Sutherland’s Edufa, Fatima Dike’s The First South African, Nawal El Saadawi’s Twelve Women in  a Prison Cell, Osonye Tess Onwueme’s Tell It to Women, and Penina Mlama’s Mother Pillar.

CLT 268 - Latina and Latin American Women Writers
Nancy Sternbach    
Monday, Wednesday, Friday  11:00-12:10 p.m. 

This course examines the last twenty years of Latina writing in this country while tracing the Latin American roots of many of the writers.  Constructions of ethnic identity, gender, Latinidad, “race,” class, sexuality, and political consciousness are analyzed in light of the writers’ coming to feminism.  Texts by Esmeralda Santiago, Gloria Anzaldúa, Sandra Cisneros, Judith Ortiz Cofer, Denise Chávez, Demetria Martínez, and many others are included in readings that range from poetry and fiction to essay and theatre.  Knowledge of Spanish is not required, but will be useful. 

EAL 245 - Writing Japan and Otherness
Kimberly Kono
Monday, Wednesday 1:10-2:30 p.m.


An exploration of representations of “otherness” in Japanese literature and film from the mid-19th century until the present.  How was (and is) Japan’s identity as a modern nation configured through representations of other nations and cultures?  How are categories of race, gender, nationality, class and sexuality used in the construction of difference?  This course will pay special attention to the role of “otherness” in the development of national and individual identities.  In conjunction with these investigations, we will also address the varied ways in which Japan is represented as “other” by writers from China, England, France, Korea and the United States.  How do these images of and by Japan converse with each other?  All readings are in English translation.

ENG 393 South Asian Autobiographical Fictions
Ambreen Hai
Tuesday 1:00-2:50 p.m
.

How have modern South Asians adapted the forms of autobiography to make sense of their lives? What can individual idiosyncratic life stories tell us more broadly about culture or history? How does writing help us to process, or create meanings from, experiences of colonization, national independence, family, race, gender, sexuality, migration, loss, or trauma? What are the implications of creating intimacy, voice or subjectivity in a colonizer’s alien language? This course explores how diverse writers (Indian, Pakistani, Sri Lankan, diasporic) have crafted life writing in English to produce broader meanings for various purposes (nation building, anti-colonial resistance, self-fashioning, diasporic identity formation, telling of suppressed histories, remembrance). Readings include fictional and actual autobiographies by Gandhi, Nehru, G.V.Desani, Nirad Chaudhuri, Attia Hosain, Sara Suleri, Michael Ondaatje, Shyam Selvadurai, Hanif Kureishi, Meena Alexander, and theories of autobiography.

GOV 204 - Urban Politics
Martha Ackelsberg
Monday, Wednesday  9:00-10:20 a.m.

The growth and development of political communities in metropolitan areas in the United States, with specific reference to the experiences of women, black and white.  Focus on the social structuring of space; the ways patterns of urban development reflect prevailing societal views on relations of race, sex, and class; intergovernmental relations; and the efforts of people -- through governmental action or popular movements -- to affect the nature and structure of the communities in which they live. 

GOV 269 - Politics of Gender and Sexuality
Gary Lehring
Monday, Wednesday  9:00-10:20 a.m.

An examination of gender and sexuality as subjects of theoretical investigation, historically constructed in ways that have made possible various forms of regulation and scrutiny today.  We will focus on the way in which traditional views of gender and sexuality still resonate with us in the modern world, helping to shape legislation and public opinion, creating substantial barriers to cultural and political change. 

HST 238 - Gender and the British Empire
Jennifer Hall-Witt
Tuesday, Thursday 1:00-2:20 p.m.

Traditionally, historians have portrayed the British Empire as largely the province of male explorers, merchants, missionaries, soldiers and bureaucrats. This course treats such men as gendered subjects, investigating intersections between the empire and masculinity, while also surveying women’s colonial experiences. Slave societies and cross-cultural encounters through the lens of gender history. The gendered structure of racial ideologies and the imperial features of feminist concerns. From the mid-17th to the early 20th centuries, with a focus on the 19th century.

HST 253 Women and Gender in Contemporary Europe
Darcy Burkle
Tuesday, Thursday  10:30-11:50 a.m.


Women's experience and constructions of gender in the commonly recognized major events of the twentieth century. Introduction to major thinkers of the period through primary sources, documents and novels, as well as to the most significant categories in the growing secondary literature in twentieth-century European history of women and gender. Enrollment limited to 40.

HST 280 Colloquium: Inquiries into United States Social History: Globalization, Im/migration, and the Transnational Imaginary
Jennifer Gugliemo
Tuesday 1:00-3:40 p.m.


Historicizes globalization by investigating the significance of im/migration and transnational social movements to the 20th-century United States. How have people responded to experiences of displacement and labor migration by creating alternative meanings of home and citizenship? What are the histories of such cross-border social movements as labor radicalism, Black Liberation, feminism, and anti-colonialism? How do contemporary diasporic and post-colonial movements in music, art, and literature, emerge out of a long history of transnational activism?

HST 355 Topics in Social History: Debates in the History of Gender and Sexuality
Darcy Buerkle
Tuesday 3:00-4:50 p.m.


This course examines the trajectory of research on the history of sexuality and gender in the modern period, with a primary focus on modern Europe. Topics include historical debates about gender and fascism, the establishment of the welfare state, feminism and war and gendered cultural production. In addition to developing a strong sense of recent historical research on gender, this course will consider how notions about gender in history inform contemporary theory and politics. Sources include original documents, recent historical monographs, autobiography and film.

HST 383 - Research in U.S. Women’s History: The Sophia Smith Collection:
American Women in the 19th and 20th Centuries
Helen Horowitz
Wednesday  1:10-3:00 p.m. (pending CAP approval)


A research and writing workshop in U.S. women's history, working with archival materials from the Sophia Smith Collection (letters, diaries, oral histories, newspaper articles, government documents, etc.) and historical scholarship, to research, analyze and write a paper of your own choice.

IDP 208 - Women's Medical Issues
Leslie Jaffe
Tuesday, Thursday  10:30-11:50
a.m.

A study of topics and issues relating to women's health, including menstrual cycle, contraception, sexually transmitted diseases, pregnancy, abortion, menopause, depression, eating disorders, nutrition and cardiovascular disease. Social, ethical and political issues will be considered including violence, the media's representation of women, and gender bias in health care. An international perspective on women's health will also be considered.

PRS 305 - Cultural Literacy
Kevin Quashie, Susan Van Dyne
Tuesday, Thursday 10:30-11:50
 a.m.

How have race and gender intersected or diverged in the ways we read our shared past? How do visual images like Rosie the Riveter or Betty Crocker, or a song like “Strange Fruit,” or even a “look” like Angela Davis’ afro become cultural icons? We’ll explore the processes through which these artifacts are circulated, acquire new meanings, and serve as catalysts for group action as well as triggers for group memory or misremembering. How have economic and political interests used cultural icons to shape collective identities? The seminar involves archival research, engaging theory, and reading media through a cultural studies lens. Students will investigate an interdisciplinary research question and make a presentation involving several media. Enrollment limited to 15 juniors and seniors. Permission of the instructors required. Seniors and juniors who have studied race and gender are welcome to apply. Others should seek permission of the instructors by email describing the courses that prepare them to do advanced work in the area.

PSY 266 - Psychology of Women and Gender
Lauren Duncan
Tuesday, Thursday  9:00-10:20 a.m.


An exploration of the psychological effects of gender on females and males.  We will examine the development of gender roles and stereotypes, and the impact of differences in power within the family, workplace, and politics on women’s lives and mental health.  This course will emphasize how psychologists have conceptualized and studied women and gender, paying attention to empirical examinations of current controversies (e.g., biological versus cultural bases of gender differences). 

PSY 374 - Psychology of Political Activism
Lauren Duncan
Tuesday  1:00-2:50 p.m.


Political psychology is concerned with the psychological processes underlaying political phenomena.  This seminar focuses on people’s motivations to participate in political activism, especially activism around social issues.  Readings include theoretical and empirical work from psychology, sociology, and political science.  We will consider accounts of some large-scale social movements in the U.S. (e.g., Civil Rights Movement, Women’s Movement, White Supremacy Movements.) 

REL 110 - Women Mystics’ Theology of Love
Elizabeth Carr
Monday, Wednesday 9:00-10:20
a.m.

This course studies the mystical writings of Hildegard of Bingen, Hadewijch, Julian of Norwich, and Teresa of Avila, and their relevance to contemporary spirituality.  Focus on their life journeys in terms of love, creativity, healing, and spiritual leadership.  Occasional films and music.

SOC 213 Ethnic Minorities in America
Ginetta Candelario
Monday, Wednesday 1:10-2:30 p.m.


The sociology of a multiracial and ethnically diverse society.  Comparative examinations of several American groups and subcultures. 

SOC 229 - Sex and Gender in American Society
Nancy Whittier
Tuesday, Thursday  9:00-10:20 a.m.


An examination of the ways in which the social system creates, maintains, and reproduces gender dichotomies with specific attention to the significance of gender in interaction, culture, and a number of institutional contexts, including work, politics, families and sexuality. 

SOC 237 - Gender and Globalization: Culture, Power, and Trade
Payal Banerjee
Monday, Wednesday 2:40-4:00 p.m.


This course will engage with the various dimensions of globalization through the lens of gender, race, and class relations. We will study how gender and race intersect in global manufacturing and supply chains as well as in the transnational politics of representation and access in global media, culture, consumption, fashion, food, water, war, and dissenting voices.

SOC 314 Seminar in Latina/o Identity: Latina/o Racial Identities in the United States
Ginetta Candelario
Tuesday  1:00-2:50
 p.m.

This seminar will explore theories of race and ethnicity, and the manner in which those theories have been confronted, challenged and/or assimulated by Latina/os in the United States.  Special attention will be paid to the relationship of Latina/os to the white/black dichotomy.  A particular concern throughout the course will be the theoretical and empirical relationship between Latina/o racial, national, class, gender and sexual identities.  Students will be expected to engage in extensive and intensive critical reading and discussion of course texts. 

SPN 230 - American Poetry of War and Peace
Nancy Sternbach
Monday, Wednesday, Friday  9:00-9:50 a.m.

This course will offer an overview of Central American poetry since the late 19th century and continuing into the present through the lens of war and peace. We will study the role of poetry in revolutionary struggles, especially in Nicaragua, El Salvador and Guatemala.  Students will engage in an exploration of language and education as creative tools for communication.  Prerequisites: SPN 220 or above. 

SPN 372- Women, Environmental Justice and Social Action
Michelle Joffroy
Monday, Wednesday, Friday  9:00-9:50 a.m.

This multi-disciplinary course explores key debates and theoretical approaches involved in understanding environmental concerns, as well as the role of art and cultural production in social movements, in Latin America from a gender and justice perspective. With Latin American women’s and environmental movements as our lens, we will map the politics and poetics of environmental justice in Latin America from the early 20th century to the present. Through films, memoirs, ethnography, music and narrative fiction we will explore how women’s cultural and social activisms have articulated the multiple ways that gender, class and race mediate paradigms of political-environmental justice. 

THE 319 - Shamans, Shapeshifters, and the Magic
Andrea Hairston
Tuesday  3:00-5:00 p.m., Wednesday 7:00-9:30 p.m.

To act, to perform is to speculate with your body. Theatre is a transformative experience that takes performer and audience on an extensive journey in the playground of the imagination beyond the mundane world. Theatre asks us to be other than ourselves. We can for a time inhabit someone else’s skin, be shaped by another gender or ethnicity, become part of a past epoch or an alternative time and space similar to our own time but that has yet to come. As we enter this ‘imagined’ world we investigate the normative principles of our current world. This course will investigate the counterfactual, speculative, subjunctive impulse in overtly speculative drama and film with a particular focus on race and gender. We will examine an international range of plays by such authors as Caryl Churchill, Wole Soyinka, Dael Olandersmith, Derek Walcott, Bertolt Brecht, Lorraine Hanberry, Craig Lucas, and Doug Wright, as well as films such as Quilombo, Pan’s Labyrinth, Children of Men, Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, X-Men, Contact, and Brother From Another Planet.