Course Descriptions

These are course descriptions for some of the courses that are regularly taught in WGS. For the current list of courses offered, see the course schedule.

101. Window on Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. (1h)
An opportunity to experience and reflect analytically in writing on the diverse cultural and intellectual life of Wake Forest, with an emphasis on Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies’ events and topics. Pass/Fail Only.

111. Writing and Women’s Issues. (3h)
This writing-intensive seminar explores special topics that include women, such as: women and creativity; women, work, and family; womanist literature; reproductive rights; violence against women; women and the arts; the emergence of feminist thought. Emphasis is on expository writing, critical thinking, and exchange of ideas in a discussion and workshop setting; frequent essays based on readings. Satisfies the basic composition but not the minor requirement

221. Introduction to Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. (3h)
Interdisciplinary course, taught by Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies faculty representing at least two fields, that integrates materials from the humanities and the sciences. Topics include critical methods and practical solutions, history and theory of women’s and gender studies, women in culture and society, and cross-cultural issues of gender, ethnicity, social class, disability, and sexual orientation. (CD)

240. Feminist Philosophy. (3h)
Examines feminist approaches to philosophical theorizing. Topics may include feminist critiques of the scope and methods of mainstream philosophy, feminist approaches to ethics, epistemology and philosophy of language, and feminist conceptions of the self, sexuality, and moral agency. Also listed as PHI 379. P—One PHI course or POI.

251. Race and Ethnic Diversity in America. (3h)
Different race and ethnic experiences are examined through an institutional approach that examines religion, work, gender, schooling, marriage patterns, and culture from a cross-cultural perspective. Grand theoretical schemes like the “melting pot” are critiqued for their relevance in an age of new cultural expectations among the many American ethnic groups. Also listed as AES 251. (CD)

310. Gender, Power, and Violence. (3h)
Research-centered study of various issues related to violence, power, and gender in American society. Emphasizes sociological analysis of competing theoretical explanations of violence with respect to race, class, gender, religion, and sexual orientation. Also listed as SOC 375. (CD)

319. Women Playwrights. (3h)
Examination of selected plays and/ or performance texts by women. Focus varies, for example, looking at works by contemporary American women or early women dramatists such as Hrosvitha, Sor Juana, and Aphra Behn. Also listed as THE 373 (CD).

320. Feminist Theory and Practice. (3h)
Examines the major themes and terminology in feminist thought, with focus on its diverse and multicultural expressions through time. Themes to be explored include schools of feminism, interlocking systems of oppression and the connection between theory and practice.

321. Research Seminar in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. (3h)
A capstone, research-centered study of questions raised by women’s and gender studies on an interdisciplinary topics, such as women’s health issues, international women’s issues, lesbian and gay culture and theory, women and the arts, etc. May be repeated for credit if topic differs.

322. Feminist, Womanist, and Mujerista Theologies: Constructive Perspectives on Christian Thought. (3h)
Examines major topics in Christian theology from African American (womanist), Latina/Hispanic (mujerista), and queer perspectives

329. Feminist Anthropology. (3h)
Examines cultural constructions of gender from a cross-cultural perspective and the relationship between feminism and anthropology through time. Emphasizes how varied forms of feminisms are constituted within diverse social, cultural, and economic systems. Students consider how feminist anthropologists have negotiated positions at the intersection of cultural and human rights. Also listed as ANT 329.

331. Men’s Studies and Religion. (3h)
Examination of the ways in which masculine sex-role expectations and male experiences have both shaped religious ideas, symbols, rituals, institutions, and forms of spirituality and have been shaped by them. Attention is given to the ways in which race, class, and sexual orientation affect those dynamics. Same as REL 340. 333. Gender and Religion. (3h) Examines the historical and contemporary interaction between religion and sex roles, sexism, and sexuality. Also listed as REL 366.

350. Biocultural Perspectives on Women and Aging. (3h)
Examines biological, socio-psychological, and cultural issues affecting older women.

358. Mothers and Daughters. (3h)
Examines literature, psychology, and feminist theories on motherhood and the mother-daughter relationship.

377. Special Topics. (1.5h,2.5h,3h)
Includes such women’s and gender studies topics as gender issues in the twenty-first century, Jewish-American women writers, African-American women writers, women and aging, critical approaches to women’s issues, and the emergence of feminist thought. May be repeated for credit if topic differs.

380. Sexuality, Law, and Power. (3h)
Explores a wide variety of issues related to sexual identity and orientation by looking at the ways in which the law can constrict social development as well as act as a catalyst for change. Examines how religion and popular morality shape the law and are shaped by it.

396. Independent Study. (1-3h)
Independent projects in women’s and gender studies which either continue study begun in regular courses or develop new areas of interest. A maximum of 3 hours may apply to the minor. By prearrangement.

397. Internships in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. (1.5h-3h)
Practicum opportunities for work and for research in conjunction with a local women’s or justice organization, such as Family Services, NOW, N.C. Center for Laws Affecting Women, AIDS Care Service, etc. A maximum of 3 hours may apply to the minor. Pass/fail only.

100. R.A.D.: Rape Aggression Defense. (1h)
Develops and enhances the options of self-defense, including basic physical self-defense tactics and risk reduction and avoidance, so they may become viable considerations for any woman who is attacked. Required readings include social science research on violence against women. Pass/fail only.