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WGSS 290

Topics in Women's Studies

An interdisciplinary exploration of a particular theme, area or period, with respect to issues of women and gender.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
1 course

Spring Semester information

Deborah Geis

290B: Tps:African-American Women Poets

From Phillis Wheatley to Maya Angelou to contemporary spoken word artists like Patricia Smith and Mahogany Browne, African American women poets have crossed boundaries, broken silences and taboos, and created a rich cultural heritage of powerful writings. In this class, we will look at works by these poets through historical, political, and artistic lenses. We'll do a lot of close reading and a lot of reading aloud. Students should come prepared to participate actively in our discussions.


Fall Semester information

Nicole Lobdell

290A: Tps:Women in Gothic Literature

In 1976, Ellen Moers used the phrase "Female Gothic" to describe "the work that women writers have done in the literary mode that, since the eighteenth century, we have called the Gothic. But what I mean -- or anyone else means -- by 'the Gothic' is not so easily stated except that it has to do with fear." In this course, we will trace that fear from the 18th century to the present day and from the haunted castle to the college campus through writers such as Jane Austen, Charlotte Bronte, Shirley Jackson, Helen Oyeyemi, Carmen Maria Machado, and Sarah Waters. This course will have several goals: to read closely but widely Gothic literature by women writers, to analyze the tropes and motifs of that tradition, and to define for today what "women's Gothic" and "Gothic feminism" means. Students should leave the course with an understanding of women's roles in the Gothic tradition and how that tradition reflects cultural tensions and social anxieties.


Christina Holmes

290B: Tps:Gender & Climate Justice