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Fall 2017 SWG COURSES

SWG 101 SWG Reads
The course offers a series of faculty dialogues about the ways that the Study of Women and Gender reads the world around us and the times we live in. How do we read gender through, and in conversation with, race, class and sexuality? How do we understand a text differently through the lenses of sociology, cultural studies or historiography? This course introduces students to “intersectionality,” as a core concept and a distinctive methodology to read texts throughout the class. Graded S/U only. Credits: 2
Payal Banerjee and Ginetta E. B. Candelario
W 7:30-9:30pm
Offered Fall 2017

SWG 105 Intro to LGBTQ Histories and Cultures
This course is an introduction to the growing field of queer American history. Over the course of the semester, we will explore the histories of same-sex desire, practice, and identity, as well as gender transgression, from the late 19th century to the present. Using a wide range of sources, including archival documents, films, work by historians, and oral histories, we will investigate how and why people with same-sex desire and non-normative gender expressions formed communities, struggled against bigotry, and organized movements for social and political change. This course will pay close attention to the intersections of race, gender, class, and sexuality and the ways that difference has shaped queer history. We will work in the Special Collections at Smith and Mt. Holyoke and the community-based Sexual Minorities Archive. Together we will contribute a project to the web-based archive OutHistory.org. {H} Open to first-year students. Enrollment limited to 25.
Kelly Anderson
TTh 1:00-2:20 pm
Offered Fall 2017

SWG 200 The Queer 90's
In this course we will immerse ourselves in the 1990s, looking specifically at the emergences and points of contention that made the ‘90s a queer, radical, deeply contested decade. The Queer 90s examines the moment in lesbian and gay studies when the recuperation of the term “queer” emerged. By engaging with the readings and films assigned in this course students will gain an understanding of the AIDS crisis and the rage that mobilized ACT UP. Students will learn what the Culture Wars, Welfare Reform, and the conservative attacks against the National Endowment for the Arts have to do with one another. In order to grasp the charged feeling, the urgency, the upheaval of this era we will read foundational queer theoretical texts and analyze a selection of films from the movement known as New Queer Cinema. Prerequisite: SWG 150. {A} {H} {L} Credits: 4
Jennifer DeClue
MW 1:10-2:30pm
Offered Fall 2017

SWG 204 This Bridge Called My Back: Women of Color Cultural Production
This course examines personal narrative, literature, visual art and performance created by women of color in North America to understand ideas of identity, belonging and difference. We study the formation of women of color feminism from the 1970’s to the present through an interpretation of cultural forms, looking specifically at categories of race, indigeneity, gender, sexuality and class. We analyze how women of color authors and artists articulate frameworks of intersectionality, hybridity, coalition and liberation. Students write both a personal narrative essay and an analytical essay and have the option of completing a creative project. Prerequisite SWG 150 or permission of the instructor. Credits: 4
Laura Fugikawa
TTH 10:30-11:50am
Offered Fall 2017

SWG 222 Gender, Law and Policy
This course explores the impact of gender on law and policy  in the United States historically and today, focusing in the areas of constitutional equality, employment, education, reproduction, the family, violence against women, and immigration. We study constitutional and statutory law as well as public policy. Some of the topics we will cover are sexual orientation and gender identity discrimination, pregnancy/caregiver discrimination, pay equity, sexual harassment, school athletics, marriage, sterilization, contraception and abortion, reproductive technologies, sexual assault, intimate partner violence, and gender-based asylum. We will study feminist efforts to reform the law and examine how inequalities based on gender, race, class and sexuality shape the law. We also discuss and debate contemporary policy and future directions.  {H} {S} Credits: 4 
Carrie N. Baker
MWF 11:00-12:10
Offered Fall 2017

SWG 329 LGBTQ Politics and Post Colonialism
This seminar covers legal, activist, and historical debates on lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer politics in British Commonwealth countries. Focusing on Indian LGBTQ movements’ efforts to overturn federal laws that harm queer and transgender people there, the course will move to cover discourses on these issues in other Commonwealth countries, including Uganda, Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica and Nigeria. The seminar discusses efforts to repeal colonial era anti-sodomy law still in effect in countries in the Global South that were once part of the British Empire. Assignments include weekly response papers, a take home midterm exam, and a final paper.
Svati Shah
T7:30-9:30pm

Offered Fall 2017

 

SWG 324 Queering Displacement: Race, Sexuality and Space
Queering Displacement is an upper-level interdisciplinary seminar that draws from contemporary theories of race, gender and sexuality to examine the relationship between specific communities and state-sanctioned displacements in the 20th and 21st centuries. What is the relationship between spaces such as reservations, inner cities, prisons and housing projects and the state’s intent to manage non-normative bodies? How are removal and displacement deployed as strategies to eradicate queer bodies? In this course, we explore how raced and sexualized bodies are constructed as a threat and what kinds of state power and cultural power mobilized to contain the threats. Prerequisites: SWG 150. Credits: 4
Laura Fugikawa
T 1:00-2:50pm
Offered Fall 2017

Spring Courses 2018

 

SWG 100: Issues in Queer Studies
This course introduces students to issues raised by and in the emerging interdisciplinary field of queer studies. Through a series of lectures by Smith faculty members and invited guests, students learn about subject areas, methodological issues and resources in queer studies. May not be repeated for credit. Graded S/U only. {H}{L}{S} Credits: 2
Darcy Buerkle
M 7:30 PM-9:00 PM
Spring 2018

SWG 150 Introduction to the Study of Women and Gender 
An introduction to the interdisciplinary field of the study of women and gender through a critical examination of feminist histories, issues and practices. Focus on the U.S. with some attention to the global context. Primarily for first- and second-year students, the course includes lecture and discussion, and students are assigned to sections. {H} {S} Credits: 4
Carrie Baker, Jennifer DeClue, Jennifer Hall-Dewitt, Laura Fugikawa
MWF 11:00-12:10
Spring 2018

SWG 270 Colloquium: Oral History and Lesbian Subjects 
Grounding our work in the current scholarship in lesbian history, this course explores lesbian, queer and bisexual communities, cultures and activism. While becoming familiar with the existing narratives about lesbian/queer lives, students are introduced to the method of oral history as a key documentation strategy in the production of lesbian history. What are the gaps in the literature and how can oral history assist in filling in the spaces? What does a historical narrative that privileges categories of gender and sexuality look like? And how do we need to adapt our research methods, including oral history, in order to talk about lesbian/queer lives? Our texts include secondary literature on 20th-century lesbian cultures and communities, oral history theory and methodology, and primary sources from the Sophia Smith Collection (SSC). Students conduct, transcribe, edit and interpret their own interviews for their final project. The oral histories from this course are archived with the Documenting Lesbian Lives collection in the SSC. Enrollment limited to 20. {H} {L} Credits: 4 
Kelly Anderson
T Th 9:00 AM-10:20 AM
Spring 2018

SWG 271: Colloquium: Reproductive Justice
This course is an interdisciplinary exploration of reproductive health, rights and justicerin the United States, examining history, activism, law, policy, and public discourses related to reproduction. A central framework for analysis is how gender, race, ethnicity, class, sexuality, disability and nationality intersect to shape people’s experiences of reproductive oppression and their resistance strategies. Topics include eugenics and the birth control movement; the reproductive rights and justice movements; U.S. population control policies; criminalization of pregnant people; fetal personhood and birth parents’ citizenship; the medicalization of reproduction; reproductive technologies; the influence of disability, incarceration and poverty on pregnancy and parenting; the anti-abortion movement; and reproductive coercion and violence.  Prerequisite SWG 150 or permission of the instructor.  {S} Credits: 4 
Carrie Baker
M W F 1:10 PM-2:30 PM
Spring 2018

SWG 314: Seminar: Documenting Queer Lives
This course examines visual and literary documentations of queer life by reading memoirs and screening short and feature length documentaries films. We consider the power and value of documenting queer lives while examining the politics of visibility as impacted by race, class and gender. We will attend to the expansiveness of the term “queer” and consider the performativity of gender and the fluidity of sexuality in our analysis of each text. Students will produce a short film, write a short biography or propose another mode of documenting experiences of queer life as members of, or in solidarity with, the LGBT community. Prerequisites: SWG 150 and one additional SWG course. Enrollment limit of 12. Credits: 4 {A}{L}
Jennifer DeClue
T 1:00 PM-4:00 PM
Spring 2018