Gender and Women's Studies

University of California, Berkeley

About the Program

Bachelor of Arts (BA)

The undergraduate program in Gender and Women's Studies (GWS) is designed to introduce students to the intersectional analysis of gender, women and sexuality, focusing on gender and sexuality as categories of analysis and on the workings of power in social and historical life. The department offers an introduction to feminist theory as well as more advanced courses that seek to expand capacities for critical reflection and analysis and to engage students with varied approaches to feminist research. The curriculum draws students into interdisciplinary and intersectional analysis of specific gender practices through investigating areas such as feminism in a transnational world, the politics of representation, feminist science studies, gender and work, gender and health, and queer visual culture. Students learn to apply methods derived from the social sciences, the humanities, and the interdisciplines to the study of gender. They explore a growing body of feminist and queer theory that revises our understanding of gender, sexuality, society, and culture.

Our students have a unique opportunity to interact with an amazing cadre of GWS faculty. The program allows our students to pursue a broad array of careers and interests after graduation. Gender and Women's Studies students get significant personalized attention. The department is known for its investment in the well-being of its students, and its smaller size produces a supportive community among students, faculty, and staff.

Declaring the Major

To declare the major, students must complete GWS 10 or GWS 20, and have a minimum grade point average (GPA) of 2.0. To complete the major, students must take two of the three gateway courses (GWS 10, GWS 20, LGBT 20AC) . For details on how to declare the major, please see the department's website.

Honors Program

Departmental honors in Gender and Women's Studies is awarded to students who have completed GWS 195 and GWS H195, the GWS Senior Honors Program. To receive honors in Gender and Women's Studies students must complete a senior honors thesis in this class with a minimum grade of A- and have maintained a 3.3 overall GPA and a 3.5 GPA in the major. At the GWS commencement ceremony honor students will be awarded a gold honor cord (provided by the department) and the title of their honors thesis will be read as they receive their scroll. The level of honors achieved—Honors, High Honors, or Highest Honors—is determined after graduation, and will be noted on the student's diploma and final transcript. For further information, please see the department's website.

The department honors thesis pPrize is given to the student who has demonstrated excellence in research and writing of the honors thesis. The instructor of the honors thesis class will recommend the student to the faculty committee.

Minor Program

The Department of Gender and Women's Studies offers a minor in Gender and Women's Studies. For further information regarding minor requirements, please see the Minor Requirements tab on this page. To declare the minor, students must fill out the GWS Intent to Minor form, once they have decided to minor in the program. After fulfilling all course requirements, students must complete a Completion of L & S Minor form and submit it to the GWS undergraduate adviser in 608 Barrows Hall.

Other Minor Offered by the Department of Gender and Women's Studies

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Studies (Minor)

Visit Department Website

Major Requirements

In addition to the University, campus, and college requirements, listed on the College Requirements tab, students must fulfill the below requirements specific to their major program.

General Guidelines

  1. All courses taken to fulfill the major requirements below must be taken for graded credit, other than courses listed which are offered on a Pass/No Pass basis only. Other exceptions to this requirement are noted as applicable.
  2. No more than one upper division course may be used to simultaneously fulfill requirements for a student's major and minor programs, with the exception of minors offered outside of the College of Letters & Science.
  3. A minimum grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 must be maintained in both upper and lower division courses used to fulfill the major requirements.

For information regarding residence requirements and unit requirements, please see the College Requirements tab.

Lower Division Prerequisites

Choose two courses (in order to declare the major you must complete GWS 10 or GWS 20):
GWS 10Introduction to Gender and Women's Studies4
GWS 20Introduction to Feminist Theory4
LGBT 20ACAlternative Sexual Identities and Communities in Contemporary American Society4

Upper Division Requirements 

Core Courses
GWS 101Doing Feminist Research4
GWS 102Transnational Feminism4
GWS 195Gender and Women's Studies Senior Seminar4
Electives
Select five electives:15-20
Three electives must be chosen from GWS/LGBT course offerings.
The other two electives may be fulfilled by courses offered in other departments, on the topics of gender, women, or sexuality.

Minor Requirements

Students who have a strong interest in an area of study outside their major often decide to complete a minor program. These programs have set requirements and are noted officially on the transcript in the memoranda section, but they are not noted on diplomas.

General Guidelines

  1. All courses taken to fulfill the minor requirements below must be taken for graded credit.
  2. A minimum of three of the upper division courses taken to fulfill the minor requirements must be completed at UC Berkeley.
  3. A minimum grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 is required for courses used to fulfill the minor requirements.
  4. Courses used to fulfill the minor requirements may be applied toward the Seven-Course Breadth requirement, for Letters & Science students.
  5. No more than one upper division course may be used to simultaneously fulfill requirements for a student's major and minor programs.
  6. All minor requirements must be completed prior to the last day of finals during the semester in which you plan to graduate. If you cannot finish all courses required for the minor by that time, please see a College of Letters & Science adviser.
  7. All minor requirements must be completed within the unit ceiling. (For further information regarding the unit ceiling, please see the College Requirements tab.)

 Requirements

Lower Division Prerequisite
GWS 10Introduction to Gender and Women's Studies4
or GWS 20 Introduction to Feminist Theory
Upper Division
Core courses, select one from the following:4
Doing Feminist Research
Transnational Feminism
Electives, select four upper division GWS/LGBT courses.15

College Requirements

Undergraduate students in the College of Letters & Science must fulfill the following requirements in addition to those required by their major program.

For detailed lists of courses that fulfill college requirements, please review the College of Letters & Sciences page in this Guide.

Entry Level Writing

All students who will enter the University of California as freshmen must demonstrate their command of the English language by fulfilling the Entry Level Writing requirement. Fulfillment of this requirement is also a prerequisite to enrollment in all reading and composition courses at UC Berkeley. 

American History and American Institutions

The American History and Institutions requirements are based on the principle that a US resident graduated from an American university should have an understanding of the history and governmental institutions of the United States.

American Cultures

American Cultures is the one requirement that all undergraduate students at Cal need to take and pass in order to graduate. The requirement offers an exciting intellectual environment centered on the study of race, ethnicity and culture of the United States. AC courses offer students opportunities to be part of research-led, highly accomplished teaching environments, grappling with the complexity of American Culture.

Quantitative Reasoning

The Quantitative Reasoning requirement is designed to ensure that students graduate with basic understanding and competency in math, statistics, or computer science. The requirement may be satisfied by exam or by taking an approved course.

Foreign Language

The Foreign Language requirement may be satisfied by demonstrating proficiency in reading comprehension, writing, and conversation in a foreign language equivalent to the second semester college level, either by passing an exam or by completing approved course work.

Reading and Composition

In order to provide a solid foundation in reading, writing and critical thinking the College requires two semesters of lower division work in composition in sequence. Students must complete a first-level reading and composition course by the end of their second semester and a second-level course by the end of their fourth semester.

Breadth Requirements

The undergraduate breadth requirements provide Berkeley students with a rich and varied educational experience outside of their major program. As the foundation of a liberal arts education, breadth courses give students a view into the intellectual life of the University while introducing them to a multitude of perspectives and approaches to research and scholarship. Engaging students in new disciplines and with peers from other majors, the breadth experience strengthens interdisciplinary connections and context that prepares Berkeley graduates to understand and solve the complex issues of their day.

Unit Requirements

  • 120 total units, including at least 60 L&S units

  • Of the 120 units, 36 must be upper division units

  • Of the 36 upper division units, 6 must be taken in courses offered outside your major department

Residence Requirements

For units to be considered in "residence," you must be registered in courses on the Berkeley campus as a student in the College of Letters & Science. Most students automatically fulfill the residence requirement by attending classes here for four years. In general, there is no need to be concerned about this requirement, unless you go abroad for a semester or year or want to take courses at another institution or through UC Extension during your senior year. In these cases, you should make an appointment to meet an adviser to determine how you can meet the Senior Residence Requirement.

Note: Courses taken through UC Extension do not count toward residence.

Senior Residence Requirement

After you become a senior (with 90 semester units earned toward your BA degree), you must complete at least 24 of the remaining 30 units in residence in at least two semesters. To count as residence, a semester must consist of at least 6 passed units. Intercampus Visitor, EAP, and UC Berkeley-Washington Program (UCDC) units are excluded.

You may use a Berkeley Summer Session to satisfy one semester of the Senior Residence requirement, provided that you successfully complete 6 units of course work in the Summer Session and that you have been enrolled previously in the college.

Modified Senior Residence Requirement

Participants in the UC Education Abroad Program (EAP) or the UC Berkeley Washington Program (UCDC) may meet a Modified Senior Residence requirement by completing 24 (excluding EAP) of their final 60 semester units in residence. At least 12 of these 24 units must be completed after you have completed 90 units.

Upper Division Residence Requirement

You must complete in residence a minimum of 18 units of upper division courses (excluding EAP units), 12 of which must satisfy the requirements for your major.

Student Learning Goals

Learning Goals for the Major

Knowledge About the Field

  1. Intersectionality: Analyze gender as it intersects with other relations of power such as race, ethnicity, sexuality, class, nationality, religion, geography, ability, and age; distinguish universalist understandings of gender, women, and sexuality from multi-dimensional analyses that recognize interconnectivity and mutual constitution of categories.
  2. Gender issues: Recognize the social, political, economic, national, and cultural dimensions of gender as these relate to disparities in power and privilege. Become familiar with a range of past and present major issues pertaining to gender, such as race and citizenship, reproductive and sexual politics, media representation, understandings of masculinities and femininities, racialization of gender and sexuality, women's enfranchisement, gender and violence, identity politics, immigration, sex discrimination, changing families, gender and environment, labor, language, health disparities, gender and science, histories of colonialism, nation-state formations.
  3. Feminisms, Feminist Theories and Feminist Research: Describe and distinguish a broad range of feminist theories and practices in their specific cultural and historical contexts both nationally and internationally; identify the contributions and limits of disciplinary, interdisciplinary and transdiciplinary feminist research and scholarship.
  4. Historicization and contextualization: Articulate differences in sociopolitical contexts that inform opinions, theories, identities, subcultures and politics pertaining to gender and sexuality. Discuss issues of gender and sexuality in the context of their specific histories, knowledge frames, and politics. Work flexibly with a variety of epistemological approaches, recognizing each as culturally specific and inherently limited.

Ways of Communicating

  1. Visual Media and New Technologies: Evaluate, interpret, and generate information from a variety of sources, including print and electronic media, film and video, and internet technologies.
  2. Written and Verbal Communication: Express ideas effectively, both verbally and in written form, tailoring arguments and presentation styles to audience and context.

Critical Practice

  1. Creativity: Bring together a variety of texts, ideas, theoretical, political, empirical, aesthetic, and rhetorical approaches in order to respond imaginatively to social, political, and intellectual issues.
  2. Collaboration: Work collectively, take initiative, offer and receive constructive criticism, exchange ideas and creatively work together toward a common endeavor.
  3. Engaged Practices: Engage in a variety of feminist approaches, linking theory with practice. Learn how to be an effective advocate informed by transnational, political, sociocultural, and philosophical contexts.
  4. Knowledge production: Understand that social, cultural, and scientific knowledges are rarely pre-given, but produced. Demonstrate ways in which various cultural practices, including cultural traditions, academic practices, and information genres participate in and shape specific productions of knowledge, considering roles played by aesthetic forms, scientific journals, popular fiction, news media, the internet, and practices of citation.
  5. Ethics: Articulate ethical positions of scholarly and activist theories of gender; that is, consider what approaches inform value judgments on specific gendered or feminist practices. Understand other ethical research concerns such as human subjects and plagiarism.
  6. Critical self-awareness: Demonstrate self-reflexivity about one's ideas and social and political positions.

Skills

Critical Thinking

  1. Critical analysis: Identify and evaluate arguments, rhetorical styles, synthesize ideas, and develop well-substantiated, coherent, and concise arguments.
  2. Logical reasoning: Identify and follow a logical sequence or argument through to its end; recognize faulty reasoning or premature closure.
  3. Abstract thinking: Generalize for a specific purpose and/or in a way that clarifies and heightens understanding of major issues at stake; identify the essential or most relevant elements of a concept, event, object, text, etc.
  4. Argumentation: Marshal appropriate and relevant evidence in order to develop a clear claim or stance using specific rhetorical approaches.

Doing Research

  1. Problem solving: Identify important historical and contemporary issues relating to gender and women's studies, evaluate various responses to them, and adapt the knowledge gained through this process to everyday situations.
  2. Research Skills: Produce or locate resources and learn to build a research agenda. Read broadly in order to develop well-focused projects, using primary and secondary sources. Delineate key points in scholarly articles and respond to them. Use different modes of research, including empirical methods, scholarly literature, and theoretical and artistic engagement. Develop advanced library skills tailored to specific research projects, including facility with electronic databases, bibliographic reference materials, archival documents, and image and sound repositories.
  3. Interdisciplinarity: Draw from multiple fields of study or define new fields; grasp means and significance of expanding, crossing, transgressing, or bridging disciplinary boundaries.

Advising

The Department of Gender and Women’s Studies Undergraduate Advising office provides students with support and assistance to help guide them through the academic bureaucracy and ensure that they have a successful undergraduate experience at Berkeley:

  • Counseling regarding their education and GWS courses
  • Declaring the major
  • Assessing their progress in the major
  • Administrative concerns (i.e., course enrollment, add/drops, L&S policy)
  • Graduation
  • Major information, courses, independent studies, Honors Program, GWS student group
  • Graduate programs and career information and referrals

The department strives to and is committed to providing a safe, inclusive environment for students. Students are welcome, feel supported, respected and valued and receive the ultimate advising experience to ensure academic advancement through the program.

The undergraduate adviser (UA), Althea Grannum Cummings, is located in 608 Barrows Hall and her email address is cummings@berkeley.edu. Her regular office hours are Monday through Friday, 9 to noon and 1 to 4 p.m. Do not hesitate to contact her if some assistance is needed.

Academic Opportunities

GWS Honors Program

GWS majors can pursue an honors thesis by successfully completing GWS195 and electing to move forward to GWS H195. To be eligible for the GWS honors program, students must have an overall 3.3 GPA and a 3.5 GPA in the major. Students must have a 3.6 for honors, a 3.8 for high honors, and a 3.9 for highest honors. In addition, the student must receive a minimum of an A- in GWS H195.

Honors Thesis Prize

The department Honors Thesis Prize is given to the student who has demonstrated excellence in research and writing of the honors thesis. The instructor of the honors thesis class will recommend the student to the faculty committee.

Departmental Citation

The Departmental Citation is an award recognizing undergraduate excellence in the UC Berkeley Gender and Women's Studies Department. Each year the department selects one graduating senior to receive this award for his/her outstanding accomplishments in GWS. A faculty committee reviews the materials of students who meet the following criteria:

  1. Officially graduating in spring or summer of the current year, or who have finished their degree in summer or fall of the prior year and haven't previously applied.
  2. Students are awarded the citation on the basis of scholarship with the criteria of an overall 3.5 GPA or higher and a 3.8 major GPA. The GPA includes the prerequisite courses taken for the major. All seniors can qualify to be considered for the Departmental Citation. When determining their selection, the faculty committee takes into consideration the overall GWS record and activities of qualified students, but it also focuses particular attention on the student's GWS research or project.

Excellence in Action Award

The department's Excellence in Action Award is given to the student who has demonstrated academic excellence and a commitment to community service. The faculty and staff will make recommendations to the faculty committee and the committee will review and select the student from the recommended candidates.

Research Funding for Majors

Majors can apply for funding to help support the costs of GWS-related research or of presenting a GWS-related paper at a conference. Individual awards can be up to $250 for domestic travel or $300-$500 for international travel. Funding levels for other costs (e.g., copying, small payments for interview subjects, etc.,) will depend on the budget presented, but will generally range between $50 and $200. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until the year’s funds are exhausted. Each major can receive funding up to two times over the course of their undergraduate career, although priority will be given to applicants who have not yet received funding. Recipients will be asked to write a very brief report summarizing how they used the funding. To apply, download the application from our website and email the completed form to the student services adviser.

Center for Race and Gender Undergraduate Student Grants Program

The Center for Race and Gender (CRG) at the University of California Berkeley, announces the availability of grants of $100 to $1,000 to fund undergraduates for research or creative projects that address issues of race and gender. Topics should be consonant with CRG’s mandate to support critical student research on race, gender, and their intersections in a wide variety of social, cultural, and institutional contexts, especially on the Berkeley campus and its neighboring communities, but also in California, the nation, or the world.

Study Abroad

Gender and Women’s Studies supports students interested in studying aboard, both through the Berkeley Study Abroad Program  or through a non-BSAP program. The department will work with students to ensure they have a productive and expansive experience, whether they are interested in taking courses for the major, in completing general education requirements, or in living/studying in another country and immersing themselves into that culture. For more details about GWS requirements, please visit the department's website.

Undergraduate Research Apprentice Program (URAP)

UC Berkeley is well known for its dynamic research environment. As an undergraduate student there are many ways to participate in research on campus. One such program is URAP, which provides opportunities for students to work with faculty on cutting-edge research. By working closely with faculty, students can cultivate professional relationships, enhance their research skills, and deepen their knowledge and skills in areas of special interest. Applications are online. For a complete listing and description of research projects, visit the URAP website.

Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship/L&S

This program (SURF/L&S) allows UC Berkeley undergraduates in the College of Letters & Science to spend the summer doing concentrated research in preparation for a senior thesis. Application deadline generally is in the spring. See http://surf.berkeley.edu/ for more information.

Haas Scholars Program

The Robert & Colleen Haas Scholars Program funds financial aid eligible, academically talented undergraduates to engage in a sustained research, field-study, or creative project in the summer before and during their senior year at UC Berkeley. Each year, twenty Haas Scholars are selected from all disciplines and departments across the University on the basis of the merit and originality of their project proposals. For more information, call 510-643-5374, consult the website, or visit the program office in 5 Durant Hall.

Ronald McNair Scholars Program

The McNair Scholars Program prepares selected UC Berkeley undergraduates for graduate study at the doctoral level. Twenty to thirty McNair Scholars are selected each year to participate in both academic and summer activities. The McNair Scholars Program aims to increase the number of students in underrepresented doctoral programs. For further information, please see the program's website.

Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship Program at Berkeley

The Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship (MMUF) program at UC Berkeley targets students with exceptional academic promise and potential for careers that will contribute to diversity and equal opportunity in the academy. The program supports fellows by providing guidance, role models and the environment and resources to strive for the highest academic goals. Fellows will realize their greatest potential as graduate students to later become extraordinarily successful faculty members and emerge as role models for future generations. For further information, please see the program's website.

Courses

Select a subject to view courses

Gender and Women's Studies

GWS N1B Reading and Composition 3 Units

Terms offered: Summer 2009 8 Week Session, Summer 2008 8 Week Session, Summer 2007 8 Week Session
Training and instruction in expository writing in conjunction with reading literature. The readings and assignments will focus on themes and issues in women's studies.

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GWS R1B Reading and Composition 4 Units

Terms offered: Summer 2017 Second 6 Week Session, Summer 2016 First 6 Week Session, Summer 2015 First 6 Week Session
Training and instruction in expository writing in conjunction with reading literature. The readings and assignments will focus on themes and issues in gender and women's studies. This course satisfies the second half of the Reading and Composition requirement.

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GWS 10 Introduction to Gender and Women's Studies 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Summer 2017 First 6 Week Session, Spring 2017
Introduction to questions and concepts in gender and women's studies. Critical study of the formation of gender and its intersections with other relations of power, such as sexuality, racialization, class, religion, and age. Questions will be addressed within the context of a transnational world. Emphasis of the course will change depending on the instructor.

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GWS 14 Gender, Sexuality, and Race in Global Political Issues 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2017, Spring 2016, Fall 2015
The production of gender, sexuality, and processes of racialization in contemporary global political issues. Topics and geographical foci may vary. Examples: the post-9-11 situation in the U.S. and U.S. wars in Afghanistan and Iraq; Hindu-Muslim conflict in India; the wars in the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda; the Israel/Palestine situation; global right-wing movements; state and social movement terrorisms and transnational "security"
measures.
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GWS 20 Introduction to Feminist Theory 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2016, Spring 2015, Fall 2013
Why study theory? How, and from where, does the desire to theorize gender emerge? What does theory do? What forms does theory take? What is the relationship between theory and social movements? This course will introduce students to one of the most exciting and dynamic areas of contemporary inquiry.

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GWS 24 Freshman Seminars 1 Unit

Terms offered: Fall 2016, Spring 2016, Fall 2015
The Freshman and Sophomore Seminars program has been designed to provide new students with the opportunity to explore an intellectual topic with a faculty member in a small-seminar setting. Freshman seminars are offered in all campus departments, and topics vary from department to department and semester to semester. Enrollment limited to fifteen freshmen.

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GWS 40 Special Topics 3 Units

Terms offered: Summer 2017 First 6 Week Session, Fall 2016, Summer 2016 Second 6 Week Session
The findings of feminist scholarship as they apply to a particular problem, field, or existing discipline. Designed primarily for lower division students and non-majors. Topics vary from semester to semester. Students should consult the Women's Studies announcement of courses for specific semester topics.

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GWS 50AC Gender in American Culture 3 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Fall 2016, Summer 2016 First 6 Week Session
A multi-disciplinary course designed to provide students with an opportunity to work with faculty investigating the topic gender in American culture.

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GWS 97 Internship 2 - 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Summer 2017 8 Week Session, Spring 2017
Internship Program: Field work in an organization concerned with women's issues plus individual conferences with faculty. Students must present a written scope of work to the supervising faculty members before enrolling. Credit earned depends on the amount of written work completed by students that interprets the experience through diaries, historical reports, and creative work done for the organization. Faculty supervisor and
student must agree on assignments.
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GWS 98 Directed Group Study for Undergraduates 1 - 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Spring 2017, Fall 2016
Seminars for the group study of selected topics not covered by regularly scheduled courses. Topics will vary from year to year.

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GWS 99 Supervised Independent Study and Research 1 - 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Summer 2017 First 6 Week Session, Spring 2017
Individual research by lower division students only.

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GWS 100AC Women in American Culture 3 Units

Terms offered: Summer 2017 Second 6 Week Session, Spring 2017, Spring 2016
This course is designed to provide students with an opportunity to work with faculty investigating the topic women in American culture.

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GWS 101 Doing Feminist Research 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2017, Spring 2016, Spring 2015
In this course, students will learn to do feminist research using techniques from the arts, humanities, social sciences, and sciences. The teaching of interdisciplinary research skills will focus on practices of gender in a particular domain such as labor, love, science, aesthetics, film, religion, politics, or kinship. Topics will vary depending on the instructor.

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GWS 102 Transnational Feminism 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Fall 2016, Fall 2015
An overview of transnational feminist theories and practices, which address the workings of power that shape our world, and women's practices of resistance within and beyond the U.S. The course engages with genealogies of transnational feminist theories, including analyses of women, gender, sexuality, "race," racism, ethnicity, class, nation; postcoloniality; international relations; post-"development"; globalization; area studies;
and cultural studies.
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GWS 103 Identities Across Difference 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Fall 2015, Fall 2014
The course studies identity as a product of articulation and investigation of self and other, rather than an inherited marking. Emphasis, for example, may be placed on the complexities of the lived experiences of women of color in the United States and in diverse parts of the world.

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GWS 104 Feminist Theory 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2017, Spring 2016, Spring 2015
Feminist theory examines the basic categories that structure social life and that condition dominant modes of thought. Feminist theory engages with many currents of thought such as liberalism, Marxism, psychoanalysis, postcolonial theory, and transnational feminist theory. In this course, students will gain a working knowledge of the range and uses of feminist theory.

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GWS 111 Special Topics 1 - 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Summer 2017 First 6 Week Session, Summer 2017 Second 6 Week Session
This course is designed to provide students with an opportunity to work closely with Gender and Women's Studies faculty, investigating a topic of mutual interest in great depth. Emphasis in on student discussion and collaboration. Topics will vary from semester to semester. Number of units will vary depending on specific course, format, and requirements.

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GWS 115 Engaged Scholarship in Women and Gender 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2015, Spring 2011, Spring 2010
This class provides students the opportunity to do supervised community service with an organization that relates to women and gender. Students will be placed in an organization and complete an internship throughout the course of the semester. Students will also spend time reflecting on their internship experiences, connecting their service with concepts learned in gender and women's studies classes, and meeting as a group to evaluate and assess
issues such as volunteer/unpaid labor, activism and the academy, and the political economy of gender and women's services.
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GWS 116AC Queer Theories: Activist Practices 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2011
This class will examine various forms of activist practices and create possibilities for students to participate in community projects that allow them to explore their own definitions of activism, community engagement, and social transformation. As a class, we will consider different types of interventions -- art, law, advocacy, and direct action -- and examine the limits and possibilities of these different forms of social engagement.

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GWS 120 The History of American Women 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2014, Spring 2011, Fall 2009
This course will survey the history of women in the United States from approximately 1890 to the present, a century of dramatic and fundamental change in the meaning of gender difference. We will examine such topics as work, the family, sexuality, and politics and be attentive to variations in the structure and experience of gender based on race, ethnicity, and class.

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GWS 125 Women and Film 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2012, Fall 2010, Fall 2009
This course explores the role of women both in front of and behind the camera. It examines the socially constructed nature of gender representations in film and analizes the position of women as related to the production and reception of films. Emphasis is on feminist aproaches that challenge and expose the underlying working of patriarchy in cinema.

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GWS 126 Film, Feminism, and the Avant-Garde 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2016, Spring 2011, Spring 2010
Focusing on the creative process while engaging in critical debates on politics, ethics, and aesthetics, the course explores the site where feminist film-making practice meets with and challenges the avant-garde tradition. It emphasizes works that question conventional notions of subjectivity, audience, and interpretation in relation to film making, film viewing, and the cinematic apparatus.

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GWS 129 Bodies and Boundaries 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2015, Fall 2014, Fall 2011
Examines gender and embodiment in interdisciplinary transnational perspective. The human body as both a source of pleasure and as a site of coercion, which expresses individuality and reflects social worlds. Looks at bodies as gendered, raced, disabled/able-bodied, young or old, rich or poor, fat or thin, commodity or inalienable. Considers masculinity, women's bodies, sexuality, sports, clothing, bodies constrained, in leisure, at work, in nation-building
, at war, and as feminist theory.
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GWS 130AC Gender, Race, Nation, and Health 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Fall 2016, Fall 2015
Examines the role of gender in health care status, in definitions and experiences of health, and in practices of medicine. Feminist perspectives on health care disparities, the medicalization of society, and transnational processes relating to health. Gender will be considered in dynamic interaction with race, ethnicity, sexuality, immigration status, religion, nation, age, and disability, and in both urban and rural settings.

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GWS 131 Gender and Science 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2014, Fall 2011, Spring 2009
Examines historical and contemporary scientific studies of gender, sexuality, class, nation, and race from late 18th century racial and gender classifications through the heyday of eugenics to today's genomics. Explores the embedding of the scientific study of gender and sexuality and race in different political, economic, and social contexts. Considers different theories for the historical underrepresentation of women and minorities in science
, as well as potential solutions. Introduces students to feminist science studies, and discusses technologies of production, reproduction, and destruction that draw on as well as remake gender locally and globally.
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GWS 132AC Gender, Race, and Law 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2015
Focusing on the interconnected ways that race, gender, and sexuality are constructed through the law, this course will examine a wide range of historical texts, legal documents, literature, and critical theory. Throughout our course readings, we will be focusing on how these categories of difference inform legal constructions of nation, citizenship, immigration, masculinity, femininity, childhood, the public sphere, and everyday life. Throughout the course, we will
be making connections between historical events and the contemporary moment through a consideration of interpretation and implications of legal arguments.
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GWS 133AC Women, Men, and Other Animals: Human Animality in American Cultures 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2015, Fall 2013, Spring 2011
Explores various ways that human groups and interests, particularly in the United States, have both attached and divorced themselves from other animals, with particular focus on gender, race, ability, and sexuality as the definitional foils for human engagements with animality.

Women, Men, and Other Animals: Human Animality in American Cultures: Read More [+]

GWS 134 Gender and the Politics of Childhood 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2017, Spring 2016, Fall 2010
Explores gender and age as interrelated dimensions of social structure, meaning, identity, and embodiment. Emphasis on the gendered politics of childhood--for example, in the social regulation of reproduction; child-rearing, motherhood, fatherhood, care, and rights; the changing global political economy of childhoods and varied constructions of "the child"; child laborers, soldiers, street children; consumption by and for children;
growing up in schools, neighborhoods, and families.
Gender and the Politics of Childhood: Read More [+]

GWS 139 Women, Gender, and Work 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2014, Spring 2013, Spring 2011
This course uses gender as a lens to examine the nature, meaning, and organization of work. Students learn varied conceptual approaches with which to probe such issues as gender and race divisions of labor, the economic significance of caring and other forms of unpaid labor, earnings disparities between men and women, race and class differences in women's work, transnational labor immigration, and worker resistance and organizing.

Women, Gender, and Work: Read More [+]

GWS 140 Feminist Cultural Studies 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2016, Fall 2015, Spring 2015
This course introduces students to the interdisciplinary field of feminist cultural studies. Drawing upon contemporary theories of representational politics, the specific focus of the course will vary, but the emphasis will remain on the intersections of gender, race, nation, sexuality, and class in particular cultural and critical practices.

Feminist Cultural Studies: Read More [+]

GWS 141 Interrogating Global Economic "Development" 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2013, Spring 2010, Spring 2009
An introduction to women and gender in "development." Addresses theories of "development" (modernization, demographic transition, dependency, world systems, post-development, postcolonial, and transnational feminist): productions and representations of "underdevelopment"; national and international "development" apparatuses; "development" practices about labor, population, resources, environment
, literacy, technologies, media; and women's resistance and alternatives.
Interrogating Global Economic "Development": Read More [+]

GWS 142 Women in the Muslim and Arab Worlds 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Spring 2016, Fall 2013
Examines differences and similarities in women's lives in the Muslim/Arab worlds, including diasporas in Europe and North America. Analysis of issues of gender in relation to "race," ethnicity, nation, religion, and culture.

Women in the Muslim and Arab Worlds: Read More [+]

GWS 143 Women, Proverty, and Globalization 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2010, Fall 2009
This course examines new patterns of inequality as they relate to the feminization of poverty in a global and transnational context. It will give students the opportunity to enhance their critical knowledge of new forms of globalization and their impact on the least-privileged group of women locally and globally. It also provides an opportunity for students to work with a local or global non-governmental or community organization with a focus on gender and
poverty, and to engage in a systematic analysis of the strategies and practices of these organizations.
Women, Proverty, and Globalization: Read More [+]

GWS 144 Alternate Sexualities in a Transnational World 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2016, Fall 2009, Spring 2008
This course engages with contemporary narrations produced by and about lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transsexual postcolonial subjects through genres such as autobiography, fiction, academic writing, film, journalism, and poetry. Each semester the focus is geopolitically limited to no more than two countries to allow students to consider the conditions out of which the narrations are produced. Sites and subjects may vary from semester to semester.

Alternate Sexualities in a Transnational World: Read More [+]

GWS C146A Cultural Representations of Sexualities: Queer Literary Culture 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Fall 2016, Fall 2015
This course examines modern literary cultures that construct ways of seeing diverse sexualities. Considering Western conventions of representation during the modern period, we will investigate the social forces and institutions that would be necessary to sustain a newly imagined or re-imagined sexual identity across time.

Cultural Representations of Sexualities: Queer Literary Culture: Read More [+]

GWS C146B Cultural Representations of Sexualities: Queer Visual Culture 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2014
This course examines modern visual cultures that construct ways of seeing diverse sexualities. Considering Western conventions of representation during the modern period, we will investigate film, television, and video. How and when do "normative" and "queer" sexualities become visually defined?

Cultural Representations of Sexualities: Queer Visual Culture: Read More [+]

GWS 155 Gender and Transnational Migration 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2011
What economic, social, and cultural forces impel women to migrate and shape their experiences as immigrants? How does gender, together with race/ethnicity and class, affect processes of settlement, community building, and incorporation into labor markets? This course examines gender structures and relations as they are reconfigured and maintained through immigration. It emphasizes the agency of immigrant women as they cope with change and claim their rights as citizens.

Gender and Transnational Migration: Read More [+]

GWS 195 Gender and Women's Studies Senior Seminar 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Spring 2017, Fall 2016
This seminar is required for all seniors majoring in gender and women's studies. The goal of the course is for students to produce a research paper of 25-30 pages that reflects feminist methods, interpretations, or analysis.

Gender and Women's Studies Senior Seminar: Read More [+]

GWS H195 Gender and Women's Studies Senior Honors Thesis 4 Units

Terms offered: Spring 2017, Spring 2016, Spring 2015
Entails writing a bachelor's honors thesis pertaining to the student's major in gender and women's studies. Each student will work under the guidance of a faculty adviser who will read and grade the thesis.

Gender and Women's Studies Senior Honors Thesis: Read More [+]

GWS C196A UCDC Core Seminar 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Spring 2017, Fall 2016
This course is the UCDC letter-graded core seminar for 4 units that complements the P/NP credited internship course UGIS C196B. Core seminars are designed to enhance the experience of and provide an intellectual framework for the student's internship. UCDC core seminars are taught in sections that cover various tracks such as the Congress, media, bureaucratic organizations and the Executive Branch, international relations, public policy and general
un-themed original research.
UCDC Core Seminar: Read More [+]

GWS C196B UCDC Internship 6.5 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Spring 2017, Fall 2016
This course provides a credited internship for all students enrolled in the UCDC and Cal in the Capital Programs. It must be taken in conjunction with the required academic core course C196A. C196B requires that students work 3-4 days per week as interns in settings selected to provide them with exposure to and experienc in government, public policy, international affairs, media, the arts or other areas or relevance to their major fields of study.

UCDC Internship: Read More [+]

GWS C196W Special Field Research 10.5 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Spring 2017, Fall 2016, Spring 2016, Fall 2015, Spring 2015, Fall 2014
Students work in selected internship programs approved in advance by the faculty coordinator and for which written contracts have been established between the sponsoring organization and the student. Students will be expected to produce two progress reports for their faculty coordinator during the course of the internship, as well as a final paper for the course consisting of at least 35 pages.
Other restrictions apply; see faculty adviser.
Special Field Research: Read More [+]

GWS 197 Internship 2 - 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Summer 2017 10 Week Session, Spring 2017
Internship Program: Field work in an organization concerned with women's issues plus individual conferences with faculty. Students must present a written scope of work to the supervising faculty members before enrolling. Credit earned depends on the amount of written work completed by students that interprets the experience through diaries, historical reports, and creative work done for the organization. Faculty supervisor and
student must agree on assignments.
Internship: Read More [+]

GWS 198 Directed Group Study for Advanced Undergraduates 1 - 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Spring 2017, Fall 2016
Seminars for group study of selected topics not covered by regularly scheduled courses. Topics will vary from year to year.

Directed Group Study for Advanced Undergraduates: Read More [+]

GWS 199 Supervised Independent Study for Advanced Undergraduates 1 - 4 Units

Terms offered: Fall 2017, Summer 2017 Second 6 Week Session, Spring 2017
Reading and conference with the instructor in a field that does not coincide with that of any regular course and is specific enough to enable students to write an essay based upon their studies.

Supervised Independent Study for Advanced Undergraduates: Read More [+]

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Studies

LGBT 20AC Alternative Sexual Identities and Communities in Contemporary American Society 4 Units

Offered through: Gender and Women's Studies
Terms offered: Fall 2017, Fall 2016, Fall 2015
An introduction to varied dimensions of alternative sexual identities in the contemporary United States, with a focus ranging from individuals to communities. This course will use historical, sociological, ethnographic, political-scientific, psychological, psychoanalytical, legal, medical, literary, and filmic materials to chart trends and movements from the turn of the century to the present.

Alternative Sexual Identities and Communities in Contemporary American Society: Read More [+]

LGBT 98 Directed Group Study for Advanced Undergraduates 1 - 4 Units

Offered through: Gender and Women's Studies
Terms offered: Spring 2017, Spring 2016, Spring 2015
Seminars for group study of selected topics not covered by regularly scheduled courses. Topics will vary from year to year.

Directed Group Study for Advanced Undergraduates: Read More [+]

LGBT 100 Special Topics 4 Units

Offered through: Gender and Women's Studies
Terms offered: Fall 2017, Fall 2016, Fall 2015
This course is designed to provide students with an opportunity to work closely with LGBT faculty, investigating a topic of mutual interest in great depth. Emphasis in on student discussion and collaboration. Topics will vary from semester to semester. Number of units will vary depending on specific course, format, and requirements.

Special Topics: Read More [+]

LGBT 145 Interpreting the Queer Past: Methods and Problems in the History of Sexuality 4 Units

Offered through: Gender and Women's Studies
Terms offered: Fall 2016, Spring 2016, Fall 2014
This course examines interpretive issues in studying the history of sexuality and the formation of sexual identities and communities. Considering primary documents, secondary literature, and theoretical essays, we investigate specific historiographical concerns and raise questions about historical methodology and practice.

Interpreting the Queer Past: Methods and Problems in the History of Sexuality: Read More [+]

LGBT 146 Cultural Representations of Sexuality 4 Units

Offered through: Gender and Women's Studies
Terms offered: Spring 2017, Spring 2016, Fall 2013
This course will draw upon a wide range of critical theory, film, music, literature, popular culture, ethnography, theater, and visual art to explore the relationship between cultural forms of representation and individual and collective forms of expression. Central questions for mutual consideration will include: Who/what constitutes the subject of queer cultural production? How are queer theories
relevant (or irrelevant) to queer cultural and political practices?
Cultural Representations of Sexuality: Read More [+]

LGBT C146A Cultural Representations of Sexualities: Queer Literary Culture 4 Units

Offered through: Gender and Women's Studies
Terms offered: Fall 2017, Fall 2016, Fall 2015
This course examines modern literary cultures that construct ways of seeing diverse sexualities. Considering Western conventions of representation during the modern period, we will investigate the social forces and institutions that would be necessary to sustain a newly imagined or re-imagined sexual identity across time.

Cultural Representations of Sexualities: Queer Literary Culture: Read More [+]

LGBT C146B Cultural Representations of Sexualities: Queer Visual Culture 4 Units

Offered through: Gender and Women's Studies
Terms offered: Spring 2014
This course examines modern visual cultures that construct ways of seeing diverse sexualities. Considering Western conventions of representation during the modern period, we will investigate film, television, and video. How and when do "normative" and "queer" sexualities become visually defined?

Cultural Representations of Sexualities: Queer Visual Culture: Read More [+]

LGBT C147B Sexuality, Culture, and Colonialism 4 Units

Offered through: Gender and Women's Studies
Terms offered: Spring 2015, Fall 2013, Spring 2013
An introduction to social theory and ethnographic methodology in the cross-cultural study of sexuality, particularly sexual orientation and gender identity. The course will stress the relationships between culture, international and local political economy, and the representation and experience of what we will provisionally call homosexual and transgendered desires or identities.

Sexuality, Culture, and Colonialism: Read More [+]

LGBT C148 Ethnicity, Gender, and Sexuality 4 Units

Offered through: Gender and Women's Studies
Terms offered: Spring 2017, Spring 2016, Spring 2015
Course focuses on the production of sexualities, sexual identification, and gender differentiation across multiple discourses and locations.

Ethnicity, Gender, and Sexuality: Read More [+]

LGBT 198 Directed Group Study for Advanced Undergraduates 1 - 4 Units

Offered through: Gender and Women's Studies
Terms offered: Spring 2017, Spring 2016, Spring 2015
Seminars for group study of selected topics not covered by regularly scheduled courses. Topics will vary from year to year.

Directed Group Study for Advanced Undergraduates: Read More [+]

Faculty and Instructors

Faculty

Paola Bacchetta, Associate Professor. Ethnicity, postcolonial theory, transnational feminist and queer of color theories, theories of the inseparability of gender, theories of the inseparability of sexuality, theories of the inseparability of, theories of the inseparability of class, theories of the inseparability of nation, theories of the inseparability of religion, global political and religious conflict (especially Hindu nationalism and racializations of Muslims and Islam), theories of resistance and transgression, right-wing movements, geographic areas of specialization outside the U.S- India and France.
Research Profile

Mel Y. Chen, Associate Professor. Queer and feminist theory, Disability theory, Critical animal studies, Materiality studies, Cultural politics of race, sexuality, ability, and immigration, Critical linguistics, Paradigms of inter- and transdisciplinarity.

Minoo Moallem, Professor. Transnational and Postcolonial Feminist Studies, cultural studies, Visual and Material Cultures of Religion, Immigration and Diaspora Studies, Middle East Studies, and Iranian Studies.
Research Profile

Laura C. Nelson, Associate Professor. Gender, medicine, and politics, Cultural, political, and experiential aspects of breast cancer in South Korea, How, why, and to what effect constructions of gender, class, and race are mobilized and manipulated in South Korea, Structures of cultural temporality (future, present, or past orientation) and anti-poverty policies (US and South Korea).

Juana Maria Rodriguez, Professor. Sexual politics, LGBTQ communities, Latino issues, women of color feminisms, ethnic studies, queer activism, transgender studies, queer kinship.
Research Profile

Leslie Salzinger, Associate Professor. Political economy, feminist theory, finance, sociology of gender, Gender and Work, gendering of transnational processes.
Research Profile

Charis M. Thompson, Professor. Science & technology studies, environmental ethics, feminist theory, reproductive technology, genetics, stem cell & cloning technology, personalized medicine, biodiversity conservation, transnational studies of reproduction & population, ethnography.
Research Profile

Minh-Ha Trinh, Professor. Gender and sexuality, women's studies, rhetoric, feminist postcolonial theory, film theory and production, music composition, ethnomusicology, contemporary critical theory and the arts.
Research Profile

Lecturers

Ayse Agis, Lecturer.

Jac Asher, Lecturer.

Barbara A. Barnes, Lecturer.

Visiting Faculty

Hila Shamir, Visiting Associate Professor.

Emeritus Faculty

Evelyn Nakano Glenn, Professor Emeritus. Labor, citizenship, undocumented students, caring work, settler colonialism, skin color bias.
Research Profile

Barrie Thorne, Professor Emeritus. Feminist theory, gender theory, ethnography, qualitative methods, sociology, women, sociology of gender, sociology of age relations.
Research Profile

Irene Tinker, Professor Emeritus. International development and women, Electoral quotas in legislatures for women.
Research Profile

Contact Information

Department of Gender and Women's Studies

680 Barrows Hall

Phone: 510-642-2767

Fax: 510-642-0246

Visit Department Website

Department Chair

Charis Thompson, PhD

620 Barrows Hall

charis@berkeley.edu

Vice Chair for Pedagogy

Paola Bacchetta, PhD

626 Barrows Hall

pbacchetta@berkeley.edu

Vice Chair for Research

Mel Chen, PhD

624 Barrows Hall

melychen@berkeley.edu

Student Services Adviser

Althea Grannum-Cummings

608 Barrows Hall

Phone: 510-642-8513

Fax: 510-642-0246

cummings@berkeley.edu

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