Classes

    LGBT Life Stories

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    In this seminar we’ll read a range of classic LGBT life stories (memoirs, journals, diaries, essays, and autobiographies), beginning in the 1800s and ending in the present. We will study them as products of their specific historical moment, paying close attention to changing ideas about race, class, gender, and sexuality. Questions: How do people narrate the story of their identity? What aspects of their life histories do they highlight; what do they censor? How does the “coming...
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    Stories of Gender and Justice

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    With gender inequities and biases pervasive within and across cultures worldwide, and the global pandemics of gender-based violence and structural violence further intensified by the Covid-19 pandemic, how have individuals, groups, communities, and nations globally fought for (and against) gender justice? How have struggles against gender injustice intersected and conflicted with struggles against racial, ethnic, environmental, health, LGBTQIA+ and other forms of injustice? Gender...
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    Queer/Medieval

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    The / in this course title can suggest a slippage or interchangeability; opposition and polarization; or erotic or romantic friction. This course functions as an introduction to queer theory as an intellectual tool with which to read texts far removed from the political, cultural, and social discourses from which queer theory emerged. We will ask: what can queer theory offer readers of medieval literature in its explorations of gender, sexuality, race, power, narrative, trauma, and...
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    How Sweet is it to be Loved By You: Black Love and the Emotional Politics of Respect

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    The word 'love' is almost never used in any portrayal or description of the African American community's daily life in contemporary media and in the social sciences. But love, as a human experience, is central to our understanding of what it means to be a vital member of a culture and society and thus respected, nurtured, etc. This seminar examines the love that difference makes. It is a comprehensive study of the representation of gender, love and sexuality in African American and...
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    HIV in Global Perspective

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022

    As Covid 19 continues to dominate our historical moment, the pandemic has provoked culture wars over personal behavior, political fights over policy and funding, and sharp inequalities of care along national, economic, and racial divides. For the past few years, we have all felt hopeful optimism and then disappointed realism about the latest medical breakthrough, initial concern followed by compassion fatigue, and a widespread sense of helplessness in the face of an unrelenting virus. These dynamics at the intersection of culture, society, medicine, and public health also defined a...

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    Anyone's Germany: Redefining Identity in Contemporary German Fiction

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    What does it mean to be German today? Contemporary German society abounds with Grenzüberschreiter of varying kinds: generations who were raised in a divided Germany but came of age in a reunified, globalized Bundesrepublik; communities of multi-generational German nationals whose identities nevertheless inherit the problematic international labor-politics of both the East and the West; voices demanding greater visibility of Germany’s postcolonial legacy and sparking viral debates...
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    Poetry Workshop: Form and Content

    Semester: 

    Fall

    Offered: 

    2022
    In this workshop, we’ll look closely at the craft-based choices poets make, and track the effects they have upon what we as readers are made to think and feel. How can implementing similar strategies better prepare us to engage the questions making up our own poetic material? We’ll also talk about content. What can poetry reveal about the ways our interior selves are shaped by public realities like race, class, sexuality, injustice and more?
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    Elizabeth Bishop and Others

    Semester: 

    Spring

    Offered: 

    2023
    This course introduces students to the poetry, literary prose, and artful correspondence of one of the major poets of the twentieth century, considering her innovations in all these genres. We will look at her writing in multiple genres alongside the mid-century shift from ‘closed’ to ‘open’ verse forms, and relate stylistic issues to the intellectual and social changes, and political and historical developments of the period. Bishop’s critique of received ideas about nationality,...
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    The Politics of Personal Writing

    Semester: 

    Spring

    Offered: 

    2023
    A long tradition of feminist writing asserts that the personal is political. In this creative writing class, we will critically examine the work of feminist and queer authors such as Dorothy Allison, Roxane Gay, Cathy Park Hong, Audre Lorde, Imani Perry, and Margaret Talusen who use personal experience as a starting point for arguments about class, race, ethnicity, gender, and sexuality. Examining how these authors draw on traditions crafted by earlier authors such as James Baldwin...
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    Latinx, 1492 to 2022

    Semester: 

    Spring

    Offered: 

    2023
    The 530 years since Columbus’s arrival in Hispaniola have paid witness to the fall and rise of empires, the perseverance of colonial structures of power, and the construction and (re)creation of racial, sexual, and gendered identities. In the midst of such change and continuity, this course sets out to ask: what place does Latinx occupy in this long history? What does Latinidad look like when we trace it back 530 years, when we take 1492 to be its starting point instead of the 20th...
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    Live Theory (and Practice): A Graduate Proseminar in WGS Studies

    Semester: 

    Spring

    Offered: 

    2023
    This WGS Graduate Proseminar will emphasize in-depth, lively conversations with WGS faculty about the interdisciplinary innovations of WGS Studies today, with singular attention to current debates in feminist and queer theories and practices. Each week, one member of the WGS faculty will guide the seminar in wide-ranging conversation about their own intellectual formation, about their own field of expertise, and about where and how their own writing fits...
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    Feminism and Anthropology

    Semester: 

    Spring

    Offered: 

    2023
    This course considers the relationship between feminism (as activist realm, as theoretical field, in its institutionalized form as gender studies) and anthropology. We will begin with early ethnographic writing by women and about women, and analyze some of the interventions feminists hope to make in anthropology. We will then examine the relationship between feminism and anthropology through two topics: kinship and politics. Our course will consider how feminist anthropologists...
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    Women's Voices in Asian and Asian American Literature

    Semester: 

    Spring

    Offered: 

    2023
    This course introduces students to the writings of both canonical and lesser-known Asian and Asian American women writers. The course especially examines the works by Chinese/ Chinese American, Japanese/ Japanese American, Korean/ Korean American women writers. Moving from the pre-modern to contemporary era, the course will explore a range of women’s voices and experiences as reflected through poetry, fiction, diaries, and epistles. Authors will include Murasaki Shikibu, Li...
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    Legacies of a Powerful Woman: The Life and Afterlife of Empress Theodora

    Semester: 

    Spring

    Offered: 

    2023
    One of the most controversial women of ancient and medieval history is Theodora, wife of Justinian I and empress of the Roman Empire in the 6th century CE. She has been variously portrayed as a hypersexual prostitute and power-hungry, vindictive manipulator, or as a saint, protectress of the needy, champion of women’s rights and revolutionary. Who was this woman really and why did she provoke such conflicting responses? In this seminar, we will explore the historical sources on...
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    Staging Critique: French Theater and the Social Body

    Semester: 

    Spring

    Offered: 

    2023
    How has theater in France, from the 17th-century to the present, served as a site of political, social, and philosophical reflection? In this course, we will attempt to answer that question by studying a selection of plays representing the major trends, movements, and writers of French theater from Jean Racine to Marie NDiaye. We will look in particular at how theater privileges the body and the language of emotion to reformulate and respond to questions regarding the relationship...
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    "The Words to Say It": 20th Century Women Writing in French, From Colette to Satrapi

    Semester: 

    Spring

    Offered: 

    2023
    Motherhood, romantic love, independence, sexuality, citizenship, fantasy, death: these are just some of the themes explored in women's novels, written in French, during the twentieth century. Students will read four exemplary novels, exploring how they have finally become classics, even given what they say about life and what it means for women to write about it. At the same time, the advent and development of feminist and/or queer literary criticism over the course of the 20th...
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    Literature, Diaspora, Migration, and Trauma

    Semester: 

    Spring

    Offered: 

    2023

    This course examines a diverse range of creative and critical discourses on trauma and the global African; East, South, Southeast, and West Asian (Chinese, Indian, Iranian, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese); and Middle Eastern (Jewish, Palestinian, Lebanese); as well as Latin American diasporas. We focus on the connections among diasporas, displacement, migration, and trauma, and on the relationships of these phenomena and constructions and understandings of artistic and cultural identities, ethnicity/race...

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