Gender and Society [CRN 27416]

Discipline: Sociology
Instructor: Pitts-Taylor
Credits: 3
Day: B
Start: 1230
End: 1350
Field Work: Day 5 | April 3, 2018 | Ghana
Prerequisites: One (1) introductory sociology course Download Syllabus

The sociological study of gender offers a lens through which to examine social structures and social problems, inequality, difference and diversity, identity and the self, belonging and community, and the possibility of social change. This course addresses gender as a social institution, or a system that is socially shaped and varies across time periods and cultures, and pays special attention to the global diversity of gendered experiences. The course addresses how gendered persons are identified and identify themselves as similar to and different from each other, and examines the relation of gender categories to power and social inequality. We will explore the links between gender and other categories such as sexuality, race, class, nation and citizenship. We will begin by examining theories of gender, and move on to analyze gendered social norms, media representations of gender, gendered body practices and performances of gender, variant genders and social movements for gender equality and diversity. The course readings will highlight scholarship on various aspects of gender in the Global South and examine gender as a transnational as well as local phenomenon.

Learning goals:

  1. Examine gender as a social institution by identifying and understanding key concepts and theoretical frames in the sociology of gender
  2. Examine gender through an intersectional lens, looking at its relation to race, nation, and other categories of difference
  3. Explore the links between gender and social inequality
  4. Analyze variances in experiences of gender across cultures

Field Work

Country: Ghana
Day: 5
Date: April 3, 2018

This field class will visit Global Mamas, an organization that enables Ghanaian women to earn a living through handicraft. Global Mamas is a non-profit, Fair Trade organization that exports products across the globe to support local women’s employment. The organization seeks to link women’s economic empowerment with community development and wellness. This class will visit a production site, meet some of the women who produce goods for Global Mamas, and meet with leaders of this NGO.

Learning Objectives:
1. Examine the link between poverty and gender inequality in Ghana.
2. Explore women’s economic empowerment projects at this NGO, and the links between women’s financial wellbeing, health and community empowerment.
3. Learn about Fair Trade as a development strategy.