Associate Professor of Economics at the National University of Singapore and a Research Fellow at the Institute of Labor Economics (IZA) WAPPP Fellow
Jessica Pan’s research examines gender differences in economic and educational outcomes, with a focus on under-explored determinants such as gender norms, social interactions, taste discrimination, behavioral traits, work flexibility, and social influences.
Please join us to learn about the Women and Public Policy Program and our work of creating and sharing knowledge that helps close gender gaps in economic opportunity, political participation, health, and education. We will discuss our initiatives, fellowship stipends, and other student opportunities.
(New course.) This course explores both the role of gender and sexuality in shaping young peoples' schooling experiences, opportunities, and outcomes, and the role of schooling experiences in shaping young people's notions of gender and sexuality. In many ways, the course is about the "hidden curriculum" of heteronormativity, or the subtle practices in schools that privilege heterosexual, gendered identities and ways of being. As such, students in the course will apply the concept of the hidden curriculum to the study of gender and schooling in order to understand why and how children and youth with different gender identities experience schooling differently and why and how heteronormative schooling detrimentally impacts all students. By the end of the course, students should be able to: (1) identify specific strategies that educators at various levels might use to support students in negotiating gender and sexuality norms; (2) identify tools that schools can use to build positive, nurturing environments, which open up possibilities for complex gender and sexual identity development; and (3) analyze and evaluate a variety of school practices, curricula, policies, and programs that seek to support healthy gender and sexual identity development for U.S. children and adolescents. The course will provide opportunities to consider the ways in which other elements of identity (e.g., race, culture, socio-economic status, age, geography, etc.) intersect with gender and sexuality in the process of identity development. Although schools will be the central setting examined, course materials are also applicable to community-based settings.
Title IX of the Civil Rights Act promises equal access to educational opportunities. This has been one of the most dynamic areas of civil rights activism in the recent past, and promises to remain so. Under the Obama Administration, protecting students from sex assault was a capstone priority. Such efforts may not remain a high priority in the new administration. Thus, we will consider the question of how essential the federal government's role is in enforcing Title IX's equity principles? What other levers are available to further the civil rights of students to a safe and equal educational environment? This course provides the opportunity to develop a robust discourse on critical issues of gender equality in schools, including issues of gender identity. Readings include cases, articles, and decisions by the Office of Civil Rights of the Department of Education.
This course covers the history of sexual education in the U.S. and Global North, the conflation of abstinence and virginity (and the Western history of virginity), the way sex education is used to teach particular gender roles, sex education for those who are categorized as disabled (with an introduction to disability studies), abstinence-only and abstinence-first education and its impact on queer, trans, and intersex teens (with an introduction to queer studies), sex education and consent, sexual assault and teaching about dealing with sexual assault, and, of course, the complex politics of sex education. We will look at research on sexual education in the United States, Canada, the U.K., Australia, and New Zealand, and consider how politics help shape sexual education and education as a whole. And, of course, we will look at the impact of feminism, gay liberation, AIDS, and other social movements on sex education and “social hygiene.” We will also review selected materials from Global South regions and their experiences with sexual education, and consider the intersections between sex education and colonialism. ... Read more about Sex Education: Politics, Policy, and the Production of Knowledge
Motherhood, romantic love, independence, sexuality, citizenship, fantasy, death: these are just some of the themes explored in women's novels, written in French, in the twentieth century. We will read eight novels together, exploring how they have finally become classics, even given what they say about life and what it means for women to write about it.
The femme fatale--the attractive, seductive woman who brings about the downfall of any man she encounters—has fascinated us through the ages, from Biblical figures like Eve, Delilah, and Salome and Ancient Egypt’s Cleopatra to Catwoman, or even Nicki Minaj’s media persona. In most stories, the femme fatale’s dangerous actions empower her, but she ultimately must also submit to the idea that her empowerment renders her a villain. How does this contradiction in the femme fatale’s character reflect tensions in our own evolving understanding of gender? How can the femme fatale character help us untangle the real gender problems that modern women and men face? This course will begin to explore these and other related questions by studying accounts of femme fatales in literature and film. In our first unit, we’ll explore 1920s and 1930s pulp fiction as a source of the modern fatale archetype, with special focus on James M. Cain’s noir novella Double Indemnity. In our second unit, we’ll move to a fictional account of a more powerful femme fatale published in the 1970’s post-feminist movement, and examine Stephen King’s novel Carrie alongside the updated film adaptation, Brian de Palma’s eponymous cult classic. Finally, in our third unit, students will research a modern day femme fatale, either real or fictional, and argue why the modern version is recognizable as a femme fatale, but also represents some evolution of, or twist on, the classic archetype. Here students will be challenged not only to apply broad theories and ideas from the course, but also to reach a greater understanding of what makes some modern women seem so dangerous. ... Read more about Expository Writing 20: The Femme Fatale