Spring 2015 GSWS Undergraduate Courses | Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies
University of Pittsburgh

Spring 2015 GSWS Undergraduate Courses

GSWS 0100: Introduction to Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies

Instructor: Julie Beaulieu
Dietrich School Requirements: Social Science, Writing Section 1: Monday/Wednesday 4:30-5:45
Section 2: Thursday 6:00-8:30

Instructor: Chelsea Wentworth
Dietrich School Requirements: Social Science Tuesday 6:00-8:30

What is sex? What is gender? What is sexuality? How are these concepts related to culture? To nature? To help you answer these important questions, this course will introduce you to the exciting field of gender, sexuality, and women’s studies. We will use a range of interdisciplinary concepts, tools, and methods to understand and analyze sex, gender, femininity, masculinity, and sexuality. Through readings, multimedia, and class discussion, we will study how gender and sexuality are socially and culturally constructed. In addition, we will consider how gender intersects with other identity categories such as race, class, ethnicity, nation, age, ability, and sexuality. Because we all have a gender, this course is crucial for any profession and for understanding the world around us. It is also a great opportunity for you to develop your written and oral skills. The course is open to all students regardless of background. As a prerequisite for more advanced courses in the program and as the intro course for current or

future students in the "Certificate in the Study of Women, Gender, and Sexuality," this course will prepare you for more advanced courses in the program. Also, you will learn to apply the critical vocabulary used in gender studies to your major and minor fields of study.


GSWS 0500: Introduction to Feminst Theory

Instructor: Frayda Cohen
Dietrich School Requirements: Philosophy, Writing Monday 12:00-12:25

Instructor: Marie Skoczylas
Dietrich School Requirements: Philosophy Section 1: Tuesday/Thursday 1:00-2:15 Section 2: Tuesday/Thursday 9:30-10:45

This course is an interdisciplinary introduction to the feminist ideas and debates concerning gender, women and men, and their political, social and economic positions over the last two hundred years. While we will focus on the United States, there will be some engagement with global feminist perspectives on gender, race, class, and sexuality. In keeping with the activist nature of feminist theory, this course will approach “theory” as attempts to answer fundamental questions about the power relations that structure our everyday lives and consciousness. Theory in this sense is a tool for thinking systematically about how the world works, and for constructing arguments about how it should work. Consequently, we will pay particular attention to the (de)construction of power in both public and private relations as we critically analyze texts, discuss and present ideas in class, and complete written analyses. Students will have opportunities to apply feminist theories to their work in their home disciplines.


GSWS 0550: Sex & Sexualities

Instructor: Julie Beaulieu
Dietrich School Requirements: Historical Change Monday/Wednesday 3:00-4:15

How and why did sex and sexuality become subjects of study? How are our experiences of sex and

Sexuality shaped by a history of "scientific" explorations of desire? Why has sexuality become so central to our understanding of identity? What was sex like before "sexuality" was invented? This seminar explores these questions by approaching sex and sexuality as socially, historically, and culturally contingent concepts. We will consider sex and sexuality as they relate to other categories of identity, including race, class, ethnicity, nation, and ability. Our theoretical and historical investigations will create the groundwork for understanding and rethinking how sexuality is understood in culture today. Topics treated will include "sodomitical sin," "inversion," the "intermediate sex," sex ed in schools, the Kinsey report, sex work, AIDS, and the history of pornography.


GSWS 1450: Gender and Sustainability

Instructor: Chelsea Wentworth Monday 6:00-8:30

This course will critically analyze sustainability from gendered perspectives. This course will take a three-pronged approach to the study of sustainability and gender, engaging with the economic, social and environmental components that contribute to our understandings of sustainability and sustainable development. Through readings, written assignments and class discussions, students will examine the intersectionality of gender and sustainability with class, race, ability, age, nationality, religion, power, politics, social movements and health from local and global perspectives. Students will critique practical applications of sustainable development and the role of gender in creating a more sustainable future. Taking an interdisciplinary approach, this course will draw on perspectives from anthropology, sociology, environmental studies, gender and development, human geography, public and international affairs, political science, economics, engineering, geology, business, urban studies, and a range of health sciences. Students will have the opportunity to learn about gender and sustainability through case study analyses stemming from a variety of geographic regions. There are no prerequisites for this course, although GSWS 0100: Introduction to Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies, GSWS 0500 Introduction to Feminist Theory or another course on gender is recommended. Counts for Anthropology and Environmental Studies majors.


GSWS 1180: Gender/Food

Instructor: Frayda Cohen
Dietrich School Requirements: International/Foreign/Global (GLO) Wednesday 12:00-2:25

Food is sustenance and absolutely essential to life. But food is never simply about nutrition. Because it is fundamental to the human experience, food is also a medium for the expression of culture and social identity. Moreover, food relays complex social messages about gender, sexuality, and family. Consequently, food is also a means for expressing the social and symbolic use of power and control in which social inequalities are expressed in culinary forms. This course will examine food from the vantage point of gendered systems of production, distribution, and consumption as we consider: How does your food come to your table (or not) and what are the political implications of personal tastes?

By the end of this course, students will be able to: 1) apply anthropological and feminist theories to food and eating in a cross-cultural perspective; 2) understand how gender, race and class influence our access to and perspective on food; and 3) make connections between eating and cultural identities and beliefs. Cross-listed with ANTH 1716.

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