Courses and Enrollment

Fall 2019

Elementary level courses

  • Gen&WS 100: Open House Gender Learning Community Seminar
  • Gen&WS 102: Gender, Women, and Society in Global Perspective – Lecture 002 is honors only
  • Gen&WS 103: Women and their Bodies in Health and Disease
  • Gen&WS 200: Introduction to LGBTQ+ Studies (LGBTQ+ Studies)

Intermediate and advanced courses

  • Gen&WS 205: Women in Russian Literature in Translation
  • Gen&WS 270: German Women Writers in Translation
  • Gen&WS 320 (Lec 001): The Female Body in the World: Gender and Contemporary Body Politics in Global Perspective
  • Gen&WS 320 (Lec 002): Gendered Labor: Pregnancy, Parenting, and Disability
  • Gen&WS 340 (Lec 001): Contemporary Queer Art and Visual Culture (LGBTQ+ Studies)
  • Gen&WS 340 (Lec 002): Queer Theory, Queer Performance (LGBTQ+ Studies)
  • Gen&WS 346: Trans/Gender in Historical Perspective (LGBTQ+ Studies)
  • Gen&WS 350: Women Writers and Social Fictions in 20th-Century Literature
  • Gen&WS 361: Sex and Power in Greece and Rome (LGBTQ+ Studies)
  • Gen&WS 401: Race, Sex, and Texts (How to do things with writing)
  • African Cultural Studies 405: Gender and Sexuality in Afro-futurism
  • Gen&WS 418: Gender, Sexuality, and the Media
  • Gen&WS 420: Women in Cross-Societal Perspective
  • Gen&WS 425: Crime, Gender, and Justice
  • Gen&WS 441: Contemporary Feminist Theories
  • Gen&WS 449: From Past Feminisms to Postfeminism: Feminism for the 21st Century
  • Gen&WS 469: Women and Politics
  • Gen&WS 522: Psychology of Women and Gender
  • Gen&WS 533: Gender, Dignity, and Health in the Context of Migration and Human Trafficking
  • Gen&WS 535: Women’s Global Health and Human Rights


  • Gen&WS 640: Capstone Seminar in Gender and Women’s Studies

This is an accordion element with a series of buttons that open and close related content panels.

Gen&WS 640 Authorization

GWS majors only

Enrolling in Gen&WS 640: Capstone Seminar in Gender and Women’s Studies requires advance authorization. Please complete this authorization form. You will receive an email from Diane Walton ( confirming your authorization and you will then have 1 week to enroll in Gen&WS 640.

This is an accordion element with a series of buttons that open and close related content panels.

Approaches and Issue Areas for the Gender and Women's Studies Major

GWS majors will find more information about the Approaches and Issue Areas associated with fall courses using the GWS fall 2019 class list.

Note about Special Topics courses in Gender and Women's Studies

GWS is offering several special topics courses in fall (e.g. 320, 449, and 533).

You can take special topics courses more than once, even concurrently, for unique GPA and graduation credit provided that you are enrolled in a different topic. Please consult with the undergraduate advisor if you have questions.

Topics Courses in GWS/LGBTQ+ Studies

This is an accordion element with a series of buttons that open and close related content panels.

Gen&WS 320: The Female Body in the World

How do bodies inform lived experience? How are bodies situated in matrices of privilege and oppression? What are the politics of the body? This course explores the social, cultural, and political construction of bodies of women and girls in global perspective. We consider specifically the bodies of women and girls, bodies that identify and are identified as female, as bodies that have historically and traditionally been sites of political contention, of societal meaning making, of cultural symbolism, and active resistance.

In this course we seek to challenge what we think we know about bodies, challenging tacit knowledge and investigating how normative discourses of the female body are formed across cultures, around the world. We will consider the impacts of phenomena such as globalization, neoliberalism, “global” feminism, imperialism, capitalism and other economic systems, and human rights movements, on cultural conceptions of health, ability, beauty, and the “value” of female bodies.

Gen&WS 320: Gendered Labor: Pregnancy, Parenting, and Disability

In this class we will explore how parenthood, particularly motherhood, is (mis)gendered and controlled in US culture, through social structures such as criminalization and incarceration, medicalization and healthcare systems, and social media and “parenting groups” of various types.

Gen&WS 340: Contemporary Queer Art and Visual Culture

As examined through this course, queer art and visual culture are defined not only through their subject matter but also by the methods through which they appropriate and subvert conventional visual practices. Such tactics may include a work’s means of production, its formal properties, and the conditions of its reception. The political imperatives of a queer or queered position, linked to the intersections of race, class, sex and gender will shape thematic investigations of practices related to activism, documentation, abstraction, mining the archive, craft, camp, and drag, among others. Case studies will be drawn from film, performance, comics, video games, and fine art. Projects will engage text- and studio-based research in an interdisciplinary push to integrate theory and practice.
No prior art or design experience required.

Gen&WS 340: Queer Theory, Queer Performance

“Queer” is a word that does different things for different people. For some, it names an identity or a community—sexy or subversive, a kind of shelter or a somewhere over the rainbow. For others, it’s none of those things—anti-identity, or outdated, or too complicit with systems of oppression. We can hear such people asking, arms folded, “Is ‘queer’ over?” With an eye toward these disagreements, this course invites students to explore what queerness is and does through an engagement with both the field of queer theory and the repertoire of queer performance. Throughout the semester, students will grapple with concepts including but not limited to the closet, the binary, intersectionality, performativity, temporality, attachment, desire, stigma, and worldmaking. We will strive, while moving through various moments in queer history (the early AIDS crisis, marriage equality, etc.), to articulate gender and sexuality to race, (dis)ability, nation, class, and other categories of otherness. Ultimately, always, and at a minimum, this course will ask the following questions: How is queerness performed? How is it theorized? How or what does queer theory perform? How or what does queer performance theorize?

Gen&WS 350: Women Writers and Social Fictions in 20th Century Literature

This course is on twentieth-century literature that portrays women who write and women who are creative. This course also includes visual art by women to compliment and complicate themes in literature about women’s creativity. We will look at how authors use female characters to address women’s artistic status in society. We will also examine different forms of creativity and different access to the creative realm among women in literature.

Throughout the semester, this course engages the following questions:

  • How does the portrayal of writerly and creative female characters vary based on their author’s identity politics?
  • How do female characters’ gender, race, sexuality, and locationality shape their creativity?
  • What historical, institutional, and systemic obstacles have shaped what women write and which women write?
  • How does visual art of and by women expand or re-see literary theories of creativity?

Readings consist of fiction written by women, nonfiction articles by women directly addressing artistry, and fiction by men on this topic. Visual art includes films, theater performance, art installations, and textiles.

African Cultural Studies 405: Gender and Sexuality in Afro-futurism

Afrofuturism is a new and rapidly developing interdisciplinary genre. It is a cultural aesthetic, philosophy of science, and philosophy of history that addresses the developing intersection of African cultural expressivities and performances with technology. One key question will guide this course: How does the Afrofuturist genre (re)imagine gender norms and sexual identities on the continent and in the diaspora?Students will be encouraged to think critically about how Afrofuturism should be put into practice.

The coursework includes readings and written critical responses. The course’s one major paper will require interdisciplinary research on gender and sexuality in Afrofuturism.

Because Afrofuturism is a developing interdisciplinary genre, course materials will draw from diverse disciplines and sources including films, music, podcasts, documentaries, street art, dance, photography, Instagram, and clothing practices as well as scholarly texts. Readings include Afrofuturism 2.0: The Rise of Astro-Blackness (2015) edited by Reynaldo Anderson and Charles E. Jones, Children of Blood and Bone (2018) by Tomi Adeyemi, How Long ‘til Black Future Month? (2018) by N. K. Jemisin, and World of Wakanda (2016) by Roxane Gay and Yona Harvey, the first black women to author a series for Marvel Comics.

Gen&WS 449: From Past Feminisms to Postfeminism: Feminism for the 21st Century

Where have we come from and where are we going? This class is designed to take us on a journey and tell stories of knowledge building over time. Exploring feminist theories from a broad array of disciplines and perspectives, we will begin in the significance of the Second Wave, consciousness raising, political pamphlets, personal manifestos, and the emerging feminist ideology of the “personal is political.” As we continue on through the course, we will read renowned work in the scholarly arenas of Black feminist thought, psychoanalytic feminism, queer theory, theory from disability studies, fat studies, ecofeminism, and transnational and global feminisms. A central aim of this course is to identify and address crucial areas of contestation that punctuate the dynamic relationships among texts from past and present —the arrivals, departures, and returns —in feminist theory. Together, we will listen to voices that align, and voices that dissent. We will engage with the work of writers and thinkers from the past, and bring these ideas to our current cultural configurations and conceptualizations of feminism(s) and feminist movement(s).

Gen&WS 533: Gender, Dignity, and Health in the Context and Migration and Human Trafficking

This course will take an interdisciplinary approach to understand gender and health in the context of domestic and international labor and sex trafficking. Human trafficking is a complex social and public health problem, heavily influenced by migration, with multiple contributing factors largely rooted in intersecting inequities in gender, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, power, class, opportunity, education, culture, politics, and race among other factors.

In this course we will use a public health lens to understand the physical and psychological health consequences, as well as the emotional and spiritual trauma experienced by victims of human trafficking. In addition, we will also learn how to develop ideas to solve this human rights and public health challenge. Although public health will be the discipline that informs our learning of human trafficking, the aim of this course is to provide students with a holistic understanding of the challenges to health and well-being associated with labor and sex trafficking drawing from interdisciplinary sources and presenting a variety of perspectives.

We will analyze human trafficking as part of a spectrum of interrelated violence and systemic inequities that are influenced by multiple social determinants of health. In this course, we will use an approach that is grounded in a victim-centered, culturally relevant, evidence-based, gender-sensitive, trauma-informed perspective that includes the essential components of prevention and identification of trafficking and treatment of trafficking-related health conditions.

Waiting Lists

If a course is closed, you can add yourself to the course’s waiting list through your Student Center. This is the only way to access a seat in a course that is full. It is in your best interest to add yourself to the waiting list as soon as possible. Remember to pay close attention to a course’s prerequisites before adding yourself to the waiting list.

If you are offered a seat in a course, Diane Walton ( will contact you with permission to enroll. Once you receive permission to enroll, you MUST enroll within 48 hours or you will lose your seat in the course.