Introduction to Women's and Gender Studies 101
This course is an introduction to intersectionality and social justice. I’m starting from a beginner perspective assuming that folks are coming into these ideas for the first time. The course begins with some of the typical patterns that people experience when they’re confronting their privilege for the first time, including resistance, fragility, guilt and shame. I encourage folks to always stay focused on their privileged identities, whichever those are. Since it’s an introductory course, there’s a lot of interesting ideas, but we don’t delve deep into any of them. We explore some of the similar patterns that different oppressions face, like victim blaming, competition, internalization, issues around visibility, disclosure, inheritability and familial relationships. We analyze economic systems around work and employment and question the structures and systems that shape our lives. I encourage students to develop their humility, ally and activism skills. We wrap up with hope for how to reimagine a better society.
The course uses a flipped-classroom methodology that centers student conversations during class time.
These are the lesson plans for the term, in order:
- Rethinking stereotypes: unlearning biological stories
- Social locations: finding yourself
- Agent ignorance: you CANNOT get it
- Visible identities: always a target
- Non-visible identities: who are my people?
- Root causes: get past the distractions
- Structural oppression: why it can't be "reversed"
- College affordability: Why do you have it so HARD?!
- Sexuality: Pleasure, communication, consent
- Adds up: when oppression accumulates over generations
- Cut-off: Abandonment and Household Oppressions
- Carework: unpaid, uncounted, invisible NON-work
- Employment: oppression in the workplace
- Competition: divide and conquer makes us all weak
- Equity: you have to FIX IT before we can move on
- Ally work: you CAN do hard things!
- Joining the revolution: where will YOU fit in?
- Stamina: we need you with us for the long haul
- Radical Reimagining: changing the world from the roots