Courses

Fall 2022 Offerings Course Info on SIS Archives

Course Descriptions

Visit the undergraduate programs page for major and minor requirements. For up-to-date information on course offerings, schedules, room locations and registration, please visit the Student Information System (SIS).

Undergraduate Courses

WGSS 0030 Women in Music. (Cross-listed with MUS 35 and CVS 37) Popular music and art music around the world from the perspective of women. The roles of women as creators, performers, sponsors, and consumers. The representation of women in music and how it reflects the culture of the past and present

WGSS 0031 Rise of the Modern Woman. (Cross-listed as AMER 31 and HIST 31) Women’s struggles for equality in American society from the 19th century through World War II. Examination of women’s drive for suffrage and political rights, access to higher education, and entry into medicine, law, and business. Focus on the tension between equality and equity and origins of tension between private and public life. Attention to diversity, including race, class, and ethnicity, in women’s experiences.

WGSS 0034 Shakespeare - S. (Cross-listed with ENG 51) This course carefully examines eight or nine of Shakespeare's plays, both early and late. Although the plays are considered in a variety of historical and theoretical contexts, the primary focus is on a close reading of the texts. The same plays will not be read in both 50 and 51.

WGSS 0035 Shakespeare - F. (Cross-listed with ENG 50) This course carefully examines eight or nine of Shakespeare's plays, both early and late. Although the plays are considered in a variety of historical and theoretical contexts, the primary focus is on a close reading of the texts. The same plays will not be read in both 50 and 51. Recommendations: ENG 1, 2 or Fulfillment of College Writing Requirement.

WGSS 0040 Sex & Gender In Society. (Cross-listed with SOC 30 and CVS 30) Differences and inequalities between women's and men's social positions and personal experiences in the contemporary United States. Intersections of gender, race, and class. Gender relations in the labor force, families, the state, and in sexual and emotional life. Violence and sexual harassment. Men's and women's efforts toward personal and social change in gender relations.

WGSS 0042 Women And Gender In Modern Chinese Culture. (Cross-listed with CHNS 79) Discussion from a gendered perspective of cultural texts—film, TV, fiction, non-fiction—produced since the early 20th century. Questions to explore include: What major women’s and gender issues have confronted modern China? Why have women and gender issues constituted an intrinsic part of modern Chinese history? How do they change and evolve over time and why? How to understand modern Chinese responses to the changes?

WGSS 0050 Hitchcock: Cinema, Gender, Ideology. (Cross-listed with FMS 81, ILVS 57 and ENG 80) Studies in the major films of Hitchcock with specific attention to the relations among popular culture, narrative cinema, and the social constructions of gender, sexuality, and cultural authority. Emphasis on various theories of cinema and spectatorial relations (feminist, psychoanalytic, queer) and close examination of the representational practices that "naturalize" heterosexual romance in relation to the narrative of "suspense." Recommendations: ENG 1, 2 REQUIRED or Fulfillment of College Writing Requirement.

WGSS 0070 Grimms' Fairy Tales. (Cross-listed as GER 70) The Grimm brothers as nineteenth-century collectors and authors. Folk tale and literary fairy tale; relation to the development of German nationalism and capitalism; role in attitude formation toward gender and social class; assimilation and adaptation in twentieth-century social, political, and economic life under the Weimar Republic, National Socialism, and post-World War II Germany. Significant focus on women's issues. (May be taken at 100 level with consent.)

WGSS 0072 Queering Feminisms: Introduction to Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. (SPRING 2013 & BEYOND).  Interdisciplinary survey of major issues in the study of women, gender, and sexuality. Emphasizes intersections with race, class, ethnicity, culture and other categories of identity and difference, including a strong global or transnational perspective.

WGSS 0073 Introduction To Queer Studies. Introduction to the interdisciplinary field of queer studies through an examination of key texts and practices. Course will interrogate notions of normality; binary systems of sex, gender, and sexuality; and cultural representations of personhood, citizenship and family.  It will examine the application of queer theory in fields such as economics, anthropology, literature, cultural studies, and film studies. Of particular concern will be ways gender and sexuality intersect with race, ethnicity, nationality, and class.

WGSS 0080 Queer Narratives. Asks how certain voices become representative of queer experience, and considers role of historical, political, and literary narratives in crafting and navigating identities. Examines texts by and/or about LGBTQ people, and addresses queer lives and experiences. Takes particular interest in progressive narrative histories of queer life and their contestation in contemporary activist and political discourse. Outlines intersections between sexuality, race, class, gender, ability, and other markers of identity.

WGSS 0085 Topics in Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. New or one-time course offerings.

WGSS 0099 Internship. Gain experience, make connections, explore career opportunities working alongside individuals, agencies or organizations (private, non-profit, or government), political advocacy groups, or women's social movements that impact the lives of women.

WGSS 0140 Feminist Theologies. (Cross-listed with REL 104) Survey of feminism's impact on the religious commitments of women and on traditional religious institutions, beliefs, and practices. Feminist scholarship in the study of scriptural texts and other historical sources, the rise of women's rituals and alternative spiritualities, religious feminism in relation to other struggles for human dignity and liberation and how the inclusion of women's perspectives is influencing the craft of theology itself.

WGSS 0141 Women and Gender in East Asian Tradition. (Cross-listed with HIST 139) How women made history and how history made women. An international and comparative study of women and gender in traditional Chinese, Japanese, and Korean societies from the seventh to the nineteenth centuries. Women’s multiple roles in political, economic, legal, social, intellectual, and literary history.

WGSS 0142 Religion, Violence and Sexuality. (Cross-listed with WGSS 142) Analysis of representative theological and ethical positions on current issues related to violence/nonviolence and sexuality in the U.S. Attention will be paid to the treatment of these issues in a variety of religious and secular traditions. Topics include responses to war, terrorism, structural oppressions (such as racism, sexism, classism, heterosexism) and sexual violence, as well as controversies around reproductive rights and same-sex marriage.

WGSS 0147 Sex and Money: Anthropology of Sex Work. (Cross-listed with ANTH 147) Intersections between sex (and other forms of intimacy) and money (and other forms of exchange). Reading of ethnographies about sex workers and those who seek to regulate, profit from, or “help” them. How neoliberalism has shaped ways of earning a living throughout the world in ways that changed gender roles and intimate relationships. Topics include ethical concerns with studying sex workers; their relationships with family members, pimps, and clients; moral panics about “white slavery” and “sex trafficking;” the whore stigma; sex tourism; criminalization and legalization; transactional sex; and the eroticization of perceived racial difference.

WGSS 0148 Medical Anthropology. (Cross-listed with STS 0148 & ANTH 148) Cultural models of illness, health, deviance, and normality. Institutions of medicine and healing in non-Western contexts and in the contemporary U.S. Using a critical medical anthropological approach, special topics (such as AIDS, madness, and gender-related concerns) will be explored.

WGSS 0150 Feminism, Literature, Theory. (Cross-listed with ENG 177) Readings in feminist approaches to questions of gender, representation, and difference from Wollstonecraft to contemporary theory, including literary, psychoanalytic, social, sexuality, and critical race studies. ENG 1, 2 REQUIRED or Fulfillment of College Writing Requirement. Recommended: ENG 20, 21, 22, or 23.

WGSS 0152 American Women Writers. (Cross-listed with AFR 155, ENG 155 and AMER 155) The complex and rich tradition of women writers of fiction and poetry in America from a multicultural perspective: major figures; important lines of influence; areas of challenge to the traditional canon; and reconstruction and discovery of neglected literary traditions. Recommended that the student already have taken either ENG 20, 21, 22, or 23.

WGSS 0160 Gender and Sexuality in Ancient Christianity. (Cross-listed as REL 160) Examination of gender and sexuality in the ancient Mediterranean, with special attention to how issues of gender and sexuality are treated in the New Testament, in early Church Fathers, Hebrew Bible, martyrdom accounts, and hagiography (saints’ lives). Consideration of pre-Christian sexual ethics and the structure of the family in Mediterranean patriarchal cultures (in this case Greeks, Romans, and Judeans) and discussion of the sexual ethics found in the writings of figures like Pythagoras, Plato, and the Stoics. Discussion of how early Christians (second through the fifth centuries CE) simultaneously reinscribe traditional gender roles and notions of sexuality, and also subvert these roles and ideas. Consideration of the conflict over the right of women to hold positions of authority and alternative avenues of power such as renouncing sexuality & marriage, and voluntary martyrdom. The rise of sexual renunciation as a central feature of ascetic Christianity and attention to the ways that women and men strive to shed the trappings of “this mortal coil” by denying sexuality full-stop.

WGSS 0162 Chinese Politics. (Cross-listed as PS 126) Survey of the domestic politics of the People's Republic of China. The development of Communist Party power through the political campaigns of the 1950s and 1960s. The political, cultural, economic, and social challenges faced by post-Mao reformers. Brief consideration of foreign policy. Recommendations: Sophomore standing or permission of instructor.

WGSS 0162 Gender, Work, and Politics In East Asia. (Cross-listed with PS 128) Gendered experiences of work in the East Asian economic "miracle." The state's role in creating, challenging, or mitigating gender considerations in work, the centrality of women's labor in development, and women's work as an international relations issue. Readings on factory, office, domestic, and sex work.

WGSS 0163 Global Feminisms. (Cross-listed with ANTH 146) Examines feminist theory, scholarship, and activism from a global perspective. Asks how ideas and critiques emerge in different contexts and move across locales, compares concepts and strategies in different times and places, and considers debates about the intersection of feminism with race, class, caste, indigeneity, colonialism, nationalism, and sexual identities.

WGSS 0170 Cultural Diversity In Child And Family Services. (Cross-listed with CSHD 164) Review of theoretical and applied approaches for providing services to young children and families from culturally diverse backgrounds, particularly families who have recently immigrated from non-Western countries. Topics include early intervention, comprehensive assessment, health care, and school integration. Students have the opportunity to visit programs and acquire focused experience with infants, young children, and parents.

WGSS 0171 Women And Fiction. (Cross-listed with ENG 171). An examination of both classic and current English and American fiction by women, with attention to the cultural context of the literary role for women in the nineteenth century and the present day, as it is reflected in their works and in feminist criticism. Recommendations:  ENG 1, 2 or Fulfillment of College Writing Requirement. Recommended that the student already have taken either ENG 20, 21, 22, or 23.

WGSS 0180 Independent Research. No description at this time.

WGSS 0185 Special Topics Seminar in Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. New or one-time seminars on a variety of topics in the fields of Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. Recommendations may apply.

WGSS 0190 Doing Feminist Research. Practices and methods of feminist interdisciplinary research in a cross-cultural framework. How feminist inquiry rethinks disciplinary assumptions and categories; what counts as knowledge; relation between subjects and objects of study; international issues in feminist analysis. To be taken in preparation for senior project. Required of all majors and minors.

WGSS 0191 Mass Incarceration and the Literature of Confinement. (Cross-listed with VMS 145, TCS 145, CVS 46, and AMER 145) The Literature of Confinement will be run as an Inside-Out™ class composed of Tufts (“outside”) students and incarcerated (“inside”) students in equal numbers and taught at the prison in Shirley, MA. Together we will ask: How have writers from different historical periods, regions, cultures, and genders (for example, Frederick Douglass, Henrik Ibsen, James Joyce, Lorraine Hansberry, Suzan-Lori Parks) understood experiences of confinement and freedom? What are some of the effects on human beings of different kinds of confinement – economic, educational, legal, physical, intellectual, emotional, spiritual, and social? How do these texts also help us understand various forms of resistance? A weekly focus on engaged interactive learning across cultural, social, and literal barriers in addition to the regular practice of self-reflection through journal writing and creative writing assignments will enable students to develop a qualitative knowledge about power and possibilities in the face of social injustice and structural inequalities. This course aims to facilitate expanded literacy, widely defined, as well as learning about deep differences while also enabling the creation of bonds between people through shared acts of interpretation and imagination.

WGSS 0193 Senior Project. A one-semester project culminating in a substantial interdisciplinary research paper or other creative project with a written component developed from the elective cluster topic. Students work with two faculty advisers from different departments. Includes a series of meetings throughout the academic year. Required of all majors and minors.

WGSS 0194 Senior Project. A one-semester project culminating in a substantial interdisciplinary research paper or other creative project with a written component developed from the elective cluster topic. Students work with two faculty advisers from different departments. Includes a series of meetings throughout the academic year. Required of all majors and minors.

WGSS 0198 Senior Honors Thesis A. This is a yearlong course. Each semester counts as 4 credits towards a student’s credit load. Students will earn 8 credits at the end of the second semester.

WGSS 0199 Senior Honor Thesis B. This is a yearlong course. Each semester counts as 4 credits towards a student’s credit load. Students will earn 8 credits at the end of the second semester.