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The world is gendered - but what is gender? We know gender is fundamental to the way in which we see ourselves and others, and how our communities and institutions are organised, but why? Why do gender norms and stereotypes emerge? What effects do they have on our lives? Drawing on feminist and queer theory, transgender studies, masculinity studies, and a range of disciplines across humanities and social sciences, this subject introduces students to the major concepts in gender studies, including: biological determinism, cultural essentialism, social constructionism, power and inequalities, sexuality, and queering categories of difference. Using a variety of case studies from social media, politics, sport, fashion, film, and music, the course will analyse how sex, gender, age, ethnicity, race, class, politics and social movements intersect to influence our understanding of sex, gender, and culture.
Intended learning outcomes
On completion of the subject students should:
- Demonstrate an introductory knowledge and understanding of contemporary gender theories;
- Have developed a foundational appreciation of the significance of gender in contemporary culture;
- Have laid the foundations of relevant research skills including use of the library, e-research skills, and appropriate referencing and presentation of written work;
- Appreciate national and international debates on specific contemporary issues and complex problems connected with sex and gender in contemporary societies;
- Grasp the importance of an independent approach to knowledge that uses rigorous methods of inquiry and appropriate theories and methodologies that are applied with intellectual honesty and a respect for ethical values;
- Have developed a foundation of relevant knowledge and methodologies, both critical and theoretical, on which to base further studies in Gender Studies.
On completion of this subjects students will :
• be skilled in critical thinking and analysis;
• cultivate written communication skills;
• develop an understanding of cultural and social contexts;
• be skilled at managing time and resources effectively.
Last updated: 6 December 2019