Major in Women and Gender Studies
The Women and Gender Studies major was created to ensure that students will hone their craft in three areas:
- Research. WST majors are immersed in research training and are expected to graduate with strong research skills.
- Policy. WST majors are encouraged to think critically about women’s experiences, inclusion or exclusion, and to prepare for work in the policy arena.
- Empowerment. WST majors are empowered through leadership studies and immersive course work to become leaders in their communities, both globally and locally.
Required core courses include WST 101 Intro to Women and Gender Studies, WST 01 Voice and Advocacy, International Relations and Gender, and WST 102 Readings in WST. Beyond the required core courses for the major, students are invited to select a scholarship “path” to complete elective units in the major. Five elective paths have been designed to create a truly interdisciplinary experience drawing on coursework from multiple disciplines and departments.
“Paths”, and possible classes designated within those paths, are listed below:
Path 1: Politics, Policy and Historical Perspectives+-
- POL 102: Women and the Law
- HCP 155: Women and HealthCare in California
- POL 156: Women and Politics
- HIS 186: Gender in American Life and Thought
- HIS 192A,B,C: Women of Color in the US
- WST 193: Selected Topics in Women and Gender Studies
Path 2: International Politics and Policy+-
- WST 109: Global History of Women's Movements
- GLP 114: Social Policy and Democratization
- WST 133: Gender and Latin American Politics
- WST 134: Women in African Politics and Society
- WST 135: Gender and Militarism
- GLP 147: Women and Development
- WST 187: Gender in Global Context
Path 3: The Body, Mind, and Spirit+-
- SJSD 1: Introduction to Social Justice and Sexual Diversity
- PSY 110: Gender Issues in Psychology
- RST 123: Spiritual Journeys of Women
- BIO 155: Cancer and Society
- PHI 178: Philosophy of Women
Path 4: Culture and Society+-
- CUL 117: Women's Literature in Translation
- ENG 123: Women's Voices in Literature
- BUS 140: Women's Issues in Business and Economics
- SOC 163: Women's and Children's Human Rights
- SOC 179: Commodifying Bodies: Human Trafficking Across the Globe
Path 5: Music and the Arts+-
- MUS 117: Women in Music
- FLM 124: Gender and Media
- ART 174: Women in Contemporary Art
This highly interdisciplinary major offers many interesting classes that fall at the intersection of multiple disciplines and topics. While new classes are offered routinely, some examples are:
International Relations and Gender+-
Designed as an introductory course to the field of International Relations (IR), WST 130 has three principal goals: (1) to provide an overview of the major theories, concepts, and debates in IR; (2) recognize feminist approaches to IR that broaden our understanding of security, violence, and the pursuit of peace, and (3)3 explore issues that followed the Cold War such as globalization, new technology, and the rise of non-state actors. At the end of this course, students will understand how gender shapes IR, how conceptualizations such as masculinity and femininity affect foreign policy, nationalism, war, and peace, and what feminist perspectives contribute to the study of IR.
Introduction to Women and Gender Studies+-
Designed as an introduction to the Women's and Gender Studies major, this course seeks answers to critical questions about the meanings of sex and gender in society. The goal of this course is to familiarize students with major themes, questions and debates in WST, both historical and contemporary. Gender studies scholarship critically analyzes themes of gendered performance and power in a variety of social contexts, such as education, law, culture, the workplace, and home. Drawing on the research of multiple disciplines from history and economics to sociology and political science, the class will examine cultural assumptions about sex, gender, and sexuality.
Gender and Militarism+-
Militarism in various forms dominates states all over the world, and its basic value of "power over the other" influences a population which begins to accept the suitability of violence as a method of resolving conflicts. The goal for this course is to think through war in all of its complexities. Militarism and war have a relationship with, and impact on, the practice of gender. Looking at what gender has to do with war, how masculinity and femininity work in times of war to create soldiers, and how gender is used, along with race, to create enemies, will reveal the relationship between gender and militarism.
Gender and Political Communication from a Global Perspective+-
This course explores the role of gender in political communication, and the role of political communication in reinforcing or challenging prevailing stereotypes and attitudes about gender issues. Political communication pertains to all of the many communicative interactions among political actors, the media, and citizens. The course will focus on the roots of Western attitudes about gender, on how gender attitudes shape how voters vote and thus how candidates run, and how gender influences policy debates globally.