Current Courses

Please refresh this page often as changes are made everyday. For any questions and special permission requests, please e-mail the department at wsfr@uwo.ca.

1000 Level Courses

GSWS 1020E INTRODUCTION TO GENDER AND WOMEN'S STUDIES
We will explore, among other topics, the following: challenges to the sex- and gender-binary, including transgender, non-binary, and intersex identities; intersectionality and solidarity across gender, race, class, and ability; constructions of masculinities and femininities; the operation of state power on gender and sexual minorities; colonialism and Indigenous resistances; activism and protest, including through literature and art. 

Come join us as we discuss these topics through conversations about sex testing in the Olympics; K-pop and boy bands; racism on dating apps like Tinder and Grindr; Uber, the gig economy, and mommy blogs; reproductive rights for trans folks; the recently released report from the inquiry on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA People; incels, rape culture, and misandry; self-care and emotional labour. 2 lecture hours plus one hour tutorial, 1.0 course.  Previous course outline

Fall/Winter 1020E/001 Laura Cayen Mondays 1:30 - 3:30pm plus 1 hour tutorial
Fall/Winter 1020E/002 Laura Cayen

Thursdays 4:30 - 6:30pm plus 1 hour tutorial

GSWS 1021F INTRODUCTION TO SEXUALITY STUDIES
This course is an interdisciplinary half-year course that will introduce students to the field of sexuality studies.  It will examine this field through several different approaches: theoretical, literary, visual, cultural and historical.  The aim will be to explore questions of identity and representation as they relate to sexuality: how are sexual identities formed? Are they essential or constructed? Who controls representations of sexuality? Why do we think of certain sexualities as normal and others as deviant? Within this context, we will analyze how certain expressions of sexuality are socially excluded and devalued in the name of a sexual norm. 2 hours plus a one hour tutorial, 0.5 course. Previous course outline

Fall 1021F Chris Roulston  Lectures will be online plus 1 hour in-class tutorial

GSWS 1022G GENDER, JUSTICE, CHANGE
The 21st century is a period of accelerating change focused around issues of gender, justice and activism. This interdisciplinary course will introduce students to the ways in which movements for justice and change are informed by and take up gender issues in struggles for social justice, economic empowerment, education, health, poverty alleviation, human rights, environmental protection, peace-building, good governance and political representation. A variety of case studies and examples will be used to highlight the ways in which women and other marginalized groups organize and agitate for change, resist oppression and theorize the concept of “justice”. 2 hours plus a one hour tutorial, 0.5 course Previous course outline

Winter 1022G Bipasha Baruah Lectures will be online plus 1 hour in-class tutorial

GSWS 1023G GAY LIFE AND CULTURE IN THE 21ST CENTURY: BEYOND ADAM AND STEVE
Modern gay identities are defined by their integration into liberal capitalism and multicultural democracy. A once marginalized group now benefits from unprecedented social mobility. This course will survey the impact of a shifting market and new federal policies on topics like the social politics of gay spaces, gentrification, art and culture and more. Students will gain a historical understanding of gay culture and an interdisciplinary set of texts to analyze an ever multiplying set of identities that fit within gay culture. By the end of this course, students will be introduced to topics in gay and lesbian studies, queer theory and gender studies and have a set of critical tools to approach these topics from music studies, political theory and sociology. 2.5 hours  

Winter 1023G Jeremy Fairall Tuesdays 10:30 - 1:30pm Course outline

GSWS 1024F INTRODUCTION TO EQUITY, DIVERSITY AND HUMAN RIGHTS
This introductory course surveys theory and practice in the fields of equity, diversity, and human rights. The course addresses how equity, diversity, and human rights policies and practices respond to social difference and relations of power; as well, we will examine arguments about multiculturalism as a strategy to promote social inclusion, the rights of ‘minoritized’ groups, and the politics of affirmative action. Towards these goals, we will take up readings about these issues from disciplines such as: anti-racism, feminism and gender studies, sexuality, disability, education, and legal studies. This also includes discussions of relevant case studies that highlight contemporary debates. Therefore, from different vantage points, the course examines some of the following questions: How are equity, diversity and human rights shaped by political and state interests? What are (some of) the limits and possibilities of institutionalized, liberal approaches to equity and diversity?  What are human rights and what does it mean to have such rights? And how are these rights contested and protected?  2 hours plus a one hour tutorial, 0.5 course Previous course outline

Fall 1024F  Shirin Abdmolaei Lectures will be online plus 1 hour in-class tutorial

2000 Level Courses

GSWS 2160A INTIMATE RELATIONS: SEX, GENDER AND LOVE
Intimate Relations focuses on how expectations of intimacy and relationships rely on particular understandings of love, sex, sexuality and bodies to shape how we experience ourselves as gendered and sexual beings. The course considers how intimacy (sexual, maternal, familial, affectionate) is understood in relation to history, philosophy, health, society and popular culture. No prerequisites 3 hours, 0.5 course.

Fall 2160A Lauren Auger  Tuesdays 4:30 - 7:30pm

GSWS 2161B WOMEN AND POPULAR CULTURE: GARBO TO GAGA
How are women represented in popular culture? Women's images in the media, from newspaper and magazines to television, film and music videos produce particular notions of what it means to be a woman, be feminine, etc. We will examine both the historical and contemporary roles of women in popular culture. 3 hours, 0.5 course. Previous course outline.

Winter 2161B Nikki Edwards Online Course

GSWS 2162B THE BODY
We will examine social and scientific constructions of the body, including concepts of beauty, health, fitness, sexuality, and questions of representation. Among other things, we may examine particular social problems, such as technologies of the body and bodily modification, ideas of health and illness, society’s difficulty with understanding the disabled body as sexual, the cultural obsession with body size, psychiatric and medical responses to people who feel that their bodily sex does not match their gender, changing ideas about beauty and attraction, and artistic conceptions, representations, and alterations of the human body.
No prerequisites, 3 hours, 0.5 course. Course outline

Winter 2162B Sarah Blanchette Tuesdays 4:30 - 7:30pm

GSWS 2163A SEX, HOW TO: SEX EDUCATION, ITS HISTORY AND CONTROVERSIES 
Sex education is a controversial topic; should we even be teaching people how to have sex or how not to have sex? This course traces the history of sex education and its many controversies as well as looking at contemporary sex education practices both locally and in an international context. Previous course outline

Fall 2163A Nikki Edwards Online course

GSWS 2164A GENDER AND FASHION
This course is designed to give students an introduction to the role played by fashion in the construction of gendered identities (in addition to learning about fashion history, fashion in relation to sexuality, and fashion as identity). Topics to be covered include: what clothing can tell us about empire, gender, sexuality, class, race, industry, revolution, nation-building, identity politics and globalization; fashion as art; drag queens and kings; fashion and sustainability; fashion journalism; the metrosexual; the history of the stiletto; veiling; and fashion subcultures such as goth and punk. We will also examine the trends of athleisure, anti-fashion, slow fashion, and normcore.Although the focus of much of the course will be on Western fashion, we will also look at Asian and African designers and influences (Harajuku fashion, Pei and Yamamoto; hip-hop and The Black Panther), as well as indigenous fashion. Previous course outline

Fall 2164A Jacob Evoy Online course Course outline

GSWS 2167B  QUEER(ING) POPULAR CULTURE
How are Queer individuals represented in popular culture? Images of 2SLGBTQ+ individuals in media, including news, film, and television, produce particular ideas of queer identity. This course examines the historical and contemporary presence of queer individuals within popular culture and popular culture produced for and by 2SLGBTQ+ people.

Winter 2167B Amy Keating Mondays 4:30 - 7:30pm

GSWS 2205G MAKING MEN: CRITICAL STUDIES IN MASCULINITY
In emphasizing the social construction of manhood and masculinity as constitutive of the enormous capital that men command, this course aims to advance a critical view whereby such concepts are seen not as impenetrable bastions of historically oppressive power, but as privileged nodes that have been instrumentalized within discursive ideological networks. Through an examination of diverse media sources (literature, film, art, critical journalism, news articles, music, etc.) and their treatment of issues like “guy” culture, male body image, homosociality, aggression, family, success, and male sexuality, this course encourages the centrality of critical reflection in understanding the oftentimes violent negotiation of masculinity across various intersectional sites, and how those dynamics are refracted in men’s relationships with themselves, other men, women, and institutions. Previous course outline.
Winter 2205G Christian Ylagan Mondays 1:30 - 4:30pm

GSWS 2220E FEMINIST THEORY AND PRACTICE ACROSS THE DISCIPLINES
(Reqiuired 2nd yr. theory course)

An examination of the implications of feminist theories and practices at work in many different disciplines, including arts, media, social sciences, health sciences, science, law. We introduce students to theoretical concepts and ask questions about the ways sex, gender and sexuality are understood and researched from a range of perspectives. Antirequisite(s): Women's Studies 2256E or Women's Studies 2257E Prerequisite(s): WS1020E, or WS1021F/G and WS1022F/G, or permission of the Department.
3 hours, 1.0 course.

Fall/Winter 2220E  Andie Shabbar and Lauren Auger Thursdays 10:30am - 1:30pm

GSWS 2225F INTRO TO GIRLHOOD STUDIES 
This course introduces students to the emerging field of Girlhood studies. We consider what it means to be a girl and how the concepts of girl and girlhood have been constructed across a variety of geographic and historical contexts, as well as how the intersections of race, class, gender, and ability have influenced these concepts. Drawing on a variety of disciplines, including literature, and history, we specifically consider girlhood through a feminist lens and examine how definitions of girl and girlhood shape individual experience, historical narratives, cultural representations, and futures
3 lecture hours, 0.5 course. Prerequisite(s): Women's Studies 1020E or 1.0 from Women's Studies 1021F/G, 1022F/G, 1023F/Gand 1024F/G. Previous course outline

Fall 2225F Miranda Green-Barteet Tuesdays 1:30 am - 4:30pm

GSWS 2240F FOUNDATION OF FEMINIST THOUGHT
This course takes up foundational readings in the history of feminist thought from early feminists’ calls for women's equality and rights to postmodern understandings of gender. The course will consider how feminist thought has emerged, developed and evolved in response to various historical, intellectual, social, political and cultural challenges. Antirequisite: WS2250E. No prerequisites.
3 hours, 0.5 course. Previous course outline

Fall 2240F Alison Lee Wednesdays 10:30 am - 1:30pm

GSWS 2243F TECHNOLOGY AND EMBODIMENT
What is the relationship between technology, power, and the body? How do historical uses and contemporary developments of technology implicate our experiences and expressions of sexuality, gender, race, class and ability? This course will take an intersectional approach to examine a wide range of questions related technology and the body including: What role has sexuality and gender played in the development of technology, and how have technological advancements affected our ideas of identity categories? Is it useful to think of identity categories themselves as a sort of embodied technology? What can technological failures tell us about our relationship to one another? Topics we will examine include reproduction technologies, surveillance, virtual sex, digital romance and dating, biomedical practices, queer embodiment, the link between sexuality, technology and militarization, and technological innovations in queer activist practices. 

Fall 2243F Andie Shabbar Mondays 1:30 - 4:30pm 

GSWS 2244 WOMEN AND HEALTH
This course takes a critical, interdisciplinary approach to understanding women’s health. The course is organized into six modules with each module covering a topic area that is relevant to women and health. The topics covered in this course are:The Medicalization of Women’s Health; Representing Gender and Women’s Health; The Politics of Reproduction; Diversity and Women’s Experiences of Health Care; The Social Determinants of Women’s Health; and Women, Work and Health. Antirequisite: Women’s Studies 2154. No prerequisites. Previous course outline

Fall/Winter 2244 Jessica Polzer   Wednesdays 1:30 - 4:30pm

GSWS 2246B WORK, LITERATURE AND FILM: WOMEN AND THE ENVIRONMENT
Across the globe, contemporary women writers and filmmakers are increasingly engaging with environmental discourses in their artistic work. Intersectional in its manifestations, these artists’ commitment against environmental injustice is usually accompanied by concerns regarding gender, sexual, ethnic, and class inequality. Primary texts include fiction films, documentaries, novels, and short stories.

Winter 2246B Victoria Jara  Mondays 2:30 - 5:30pm 

GSWS 2265G YOUTH ACTIVISM
In this course, we will highlight the connections among gender, youth activism, and nontraditional political participation. Understanding the state of youth activism, and the factors that encourage youth participation is particularly important because, as we will discuss throughout the semester, youth have played a crucial role in many of the most effective social movements going back to the 1960s, and the youth of today will shape what politics looks like for the next generation. The course is divided into three sections. First, we will examine the foundational features of youth activism and political participation writ large. Second, we will investigate current youth activism in action by looking at local, national, and global movements such as Black Lives Matter, March for Our Lives, and Fridays for Future. And, finally, by using the groundwork established in the first two-thirds of the course, we will explore how youth are changing the content and shape of political engagement today. Prerequisite(s): GSWS 1020E, or 1.0 course from GSWS 1021F/G, GSWS 1022F/G, GSWS 1023F/G, GSWS 1024F/G.

Winter 2265G Jeremy Johnston  Wednesdays 10:30 - 1:30pm

GSWS 2273E SEXUAL SUBJECTS
This interdisciplinary course focuses on sexuality as a subject of study and considers how sexuality defines individual and social subjectivity. The course will explore sexual subjects within a theoretical context and might include sexology, psychoanalysis, queer theory, feminism, the history of sexual identity, and its representation in cultural production.
No prerequisites. 3 hours, 1.0 course Previous course outline

Fall/Winter 2273E Laura Cayen Tuesdays 10:30 - 1:30pm

GSWS 2274G INTRO TO TRANSGENDER STUDIES
This course will focus on trans identities, history, theory and politics from the perspectives of feminist, queer, and emerging trans theory. Topics may include transphobia and oppression of trans people, sex and gender change, transvestism, gender passing, transgender children and their families, and intersectionalities with sexuality, race, class, ability, etc. Antirequisite(s): Women's Studies 4460F/G if taught in Winter 2013; Women's Studies 3343F/G if taught in Fall 2015. Prerequisite(s): Women's Studies 1020E or 1.0 from Women's Studies 1021F/G, 1022F/G, 1023F/Gand 1024F/G. Previous course outline

Winter 2274G Sadie Hochman Tuesdays 1:30 - 4:30pm

GSWS 2283G DESIRING WOMEN
This course looks at how female sexuality and subjectivity is experienced, understood, represented and theorized across a range of disciplines; these may include art, literature, media, psychology, anthropology, sociology, biology and medicine. It explores how female sexual desires, practices and identities are shaped in relation to individual, cultural and social meanings of female sexuality. No prerequisites. New course outline.

Winter 2283G Lauren Auger   Wednesdays 4:30 - 7:30pm

3000 Level Courses

GSWS 3133G LESBIAN LIVES AND CULTURES
This course will explore what it means to identify as a lesbian today. With the move away from identity politics and the ascendance of queer as a challenge to identity categories, it will consider the place of lesbianism in contemporary North American culture and more globally. Attention will be paid to a variety of aspects of lesbian lives and to contemporary forms of lesbian experiences in relation to their historical antecedents. Themes will include intersectionality, activism, sex, literature, art and politics. 3 lecture hours, 0.5 course. 
Prerequisite(s): Women's Studies 2273E or Women's Studies 2220E or permission of the department.

Winter 3133G Chris Roulston   Thursdays 1:30 - 4:30pm

GSWS 3173G INTRODUCTION TO QUEER THEORY
What is queer theory, where did it come from, how is it changing? Examining key foundational texts in queer theory, the contexts for its emergence, and debates over its contemporary usefulness and direction, students in this course will trace the development of queer theory from Foucault to the present day.
3 hours, 0.5 course. Prerequisite(s): Women's Studies 2273E or Women's Studies 2220E or permission of the department. Previous course outline.

Winter 3173G WG Pearson Wednesdays 10:30am - 1:30pm

GSWS 3305F CULTURE JAM: GENDER, SEXUALITY AND CULTURAL RESISTANCE -CANCELLED!
While popular culture operates to naturalize and distribute dominant discourses about gender and sexuality, it is also a fertile space through which resistance can be enacted. This course examines; common sense; representations of gender and sexuality within Western popular culture and the ways these representations have been confronted and contested. Prerequisites: Women's Studies 2253E or 2273E or 2220E or permission of the Department. 3 hours, 0.5 course. Previous course outline

Fall 3305F TBA Thursdays 1:30 - 4:30  

GSWS 3321G ADVANCED TOPICS IN FEMINIST THEORY AND PRACTICE IN THE ARTS AND HUMANITIES (Required 3rd yr. theory course)
This course applies a wide range of feminist theories and critical practices, including postmodern and queer theories, literary criticism, psychoanalysis, and postcolonial studies, to a diverse array of artistic practices, including literature, film, and the performing and visual arts. 3 hours, 0.5 course. Prerequisite(s): Women's Studies 2220E, or permission of the Department. Previous course outline

Winter 3321G Andie Shabbar Wednesdays 1:30 - 4:30 pm

GSWS 3322F ADVANCED TOPICS IN FEMINIST THEORY AND PRACTICE IN SOCIAL SCIENCES
(Required 3rd yr. theory course)

This course is an advanced examination of the application of feminist theories and practices to topics in the social sciences. Focus will include epistemological and methodological questions raised in feminist engagement across the various social science disciplines. Topics addressed may include a range of social-economic, cultural, political, and policy issues. 3 hours, 0.5 course Prerequisite(s): GSWS 2220E, or permission of the Department. Previous course outline.

Fall 3322F Lauren Auger Wednesdays 1:30 - 4:30 pm

GSWS 3324G CONTEMPORARY TOPICS IN CRITICAL RACE STUDIES
Focussing on the changing meanings of race and racism in the twenty-first century, this course discusses and analyzes conceptual frameworks for understanding the multi-faceted and intersectional dimensions of race and racism, and examines how these inform social justice movements and other initiatives that seek to challenge institutional racism and racial violence. Prerequisite(s): GSWS 2220E or GSWS 2273E, or permission of the Department. Previous course outline.

Winter 3324G Jason Sandhar  Mondays 2:30 - 5:30pm

GSWS 3330F GENDER, RACE AND REBELLION
When it comes to twenty-first century rebellions, adolescents are taking center stage, and specifically adolescent girls. In this course, we will examine contemporary girlhood and how adolescent girls are at the forefront of race- and gender-based rebellions. Understanding the state of youth activism, and the factors that encourage adolescent girls to rebel against harmful social structures is particularly important because, as we will discuss throughout the semester, youth have played a crucial role in many of the most effective social movements going back to the 1960s, and adolescent girls today are on the frontlines of rebelling against issues such as police brutality, government policies, and environmental catastrophe. Specifically, adolescent girls frequently demonstrate a hyper-awareness of how these injustices are informed by gender and race. Prerequisite(s): GSWS 2220E, or permission of the Department.

Fall 3330F Jeremy Johnston Tuesdays 4:30 - 7:30pm Course outline

GSWS 3333F  RESISTING HOMOPHOBIA ACROSS THE GLOBE 
Homophobia - or a hostility towards persons not conforming to heterosexual norms - is old and new, global and local. Despite its longevity, it varies in intensity both geographically and historically & it is not natural, but created. It is also resisted, evaded, subverted. In this class, we explore these aspects of production, maintenance and resistance and we do so by paying attention to both history and contemporary cases. More specifically, we investigate how homophobia was and is implicated in the disciplining of gender, how it was and is a tool of orientalism; how it helped build nations and grow religious orders, how it aided Cold War; and how it now organizes notions of terrorism. Prerequisite(s): GSWS 2220E or GSWS 2273E, or permission of the Department.

Fall 3333F Kate Korycki  Tuesdays 1:30 - 4:30 pm Course outline

GSWS 3362G TOXIC MASCULINITY
“At the heart of the relational conception of masculinity is the conflict between what it means to be a “real” man and what it means to be a “good” man—a conflict that is ultimately enacted within contested contexts such as culture, ideology, institutions, and habitus. This leads to questions such as: are toxicity and masculinity mutually exclusive? Is toxicity an essentially masculine characteristic? Are toxic masculinity and healthy masculinity binary concepts? Toxic masculinity, as this course hypothesizes, thus arises when there is an incongruence or asymmetry between the performative and idealized aspects of men’s experiences of manhood and masculinity.” Prerequisite(s): GSWS 2220E, or permission of the Department.

Winter 3362G Christian Ylagan Tuesdays 1:30-4:30pm Course outline

 

4000 Level Courses

GSWS 4458F STIGMA: PEOPLE, PLACES AND POPULATIONS
This course takes an intersectional and interdisciplinary approach to stigma theorization driven by a feminist perspective in order to critique the classed, raced, and gendered harms that structural stigma enacts. Through a wide range of examples using academic and non-academic literature, films, and popular media texts, we will examine stigma beyond established understandings of individualised shame. Rather, students will explore how stigma power operates as a technique of biopower applied at an individual, spatial and societal level to discipline bodies, and regulate populations and places in ways that reproduce existing hierarchies of difference and marginalize, manage, and/or affirm our place within society. Prerequisite(s): GSWS 2220E, or permission of the Department.

Fall 4458F Stephanie Brocklehurst  Thursdays 10:30 - 1:30pm

GSWS 4459G A BUSINESS OF PLEASURE AND PAIN: AN EXPLORATION OF SEX WORK IN CANADA 
Sex workers have long been at the forefront of feminism. Yet, many communities and scholars who proclaim a commitment to feminism continue to exclude sex workers and invalidate their lived experiences. In this course, students will explore how sex work is not inherently oppressive and instead look at how dominant social structures, values and laws marginalize sex workers and enable and perpetuate the injustices that sex workers face. Students will develop nuanced understandings of sex work leading to a recognition of and appreciation for the role that sex work has in feminism and social justice through both the struggles faced and accomplishments made by various sex working communities. Prerequisite(s): GSWS 2220E, or permission of the Department.

Winter 4459G Georgina Gifford Tuesdays 1:30 - 4:30pm

GSWS 4461F POST-FEMINISM, ADVERTISING AND INFLUENCERS
What is the relationship between feminism and advertising?  In what ways have women been involved in the advertising industry?  How has the advertising industry historically viewed and valued women as consumers?  How have activists used media reform to advance feminist aims? How has advertising responded to decades of feminist critique?  In this course, students will explore and discuss the representation of women in advertising, women’s employment in the advertising industry, the political economy of gender in audience studies, post-feminist advertising themes of empowerment, choice, diversity, and inclusion, and the relationship between activism and the a-political nature of post-feminism. Prerequisite(s): GSWS 2220E, or permission of the Department.

Fall 4461F Laura Cayen Wednesdays 1:30 - 4:30pm

GSWS 4463F QUEER SCIENCE FICTION
This course will look at queer depictions of sexuality in science fiction, a genre that has been arguably somewhat queer from its inception in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. Although we will touch on historical concerns, the primary focus of the course will be on work published after Ursula K Le Guin's monumentally influential novel,The Left Hand of Darkness (1967). The course will cover topics such as critiques of heteronormativity in sciencefiction, futures that imagine alternative epistemologies of sexuality, futures without binary sex/gender systems, the question of what roles sexuality plays in robotics and Artificial Intelligence, sexuality and post-humanism, sexuality in cyberpunk and its offshoots, and responses to the AIDS crisis. Prerequisite(s): GSWS 2220E or GSWS 2253E or GSWS 2273E, or permission of the Department.

Fall 4463F WG Pearson Wednesdays 10:30am - 1:30pm

GSWS 4464G GENDER AND THE ENVIRONMENT
This course will focus on the intersections between gender, sexuality, development and environmental justice. Feminist and queer theory will be used to interrogate binary categories such as natural/unnatural, nature/culture, normal/abnormal as they relate to our understandings of “the environment.” The course will explore how racism, colonialism, imperialism and other forms of oppression have shaped and continue to shape environmental discourses. We will examine key contemporary environmental issues such as climate change; food security; the “green” economy and low-carbon development; access to water, sanitation and energy; pollution; and wildlife conservation from feminist perspectives. Course materials will include academic and non-academic literature, activist texts as well as case studies, fiction and films. Prerequisite(s): Women's Studies 2220E, or permission of the Department.

Winter 4464G Bipasha Baruah Mondays 10:30am - 1:30pm