2012-2013 Academic Catalog 
    Apr 22, 2018  
2012-2013 Academic Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Women's and Gender Studies Major

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Women's and Gender Studies Overview

Clark launched its Women’s Studies program in 1979. In spring 2006, the university approved the Women’s and Gender Studies (WGS) major. The WGS major provides students with a solid foundation in women’s studies and gender analysis, introduces them to a range of disciplinary approaches to women and gender, and helps them to develop an area of specialization within the field. Courses stress the importance of social ideas and relationships such as those shaped by gender, ethnicity, race, and class to betteunderstand individual and collective experiences, past and present. The major requires a minor in another field (and encourages a double major) in order to reinforce connections with existing majors.

WGS courses are offered by faculty throughout the university, but students are required to take three core courses within the Women’s Studies Program: Introduction to Women’s Studies, Feminist Theory, and Senior Capstone seminar. With the exception of these core courses, most offerings are cross-listed with the departments in which they originate.

For more information, please visit the Women’s and Gender Studies Department’s website.

Major Requirements

All Women’s and Gender Studies majors must take ten (10) WGS courses and complete a minor or a second major in another field. The major requirements are distributed as follows:

  • Three Core Courses: Introduction to Women’s Studies, Feminist Theory, and a Senior Capstone seminar, directed study, or internship.

  • Three Introductory or 100-Level Courses from three different departments.
  • Three 200-Level Courses in a chosen theme or area of specialization from at least two different departments. Students will design a specialization in consultation with their adviser and must receive the approval of the Women’s and Gender Studies director.
  • One Methods or Skills course related to the student’s WGS specialization. This course may overlap with the required minor or second major.

The Women’s and Gender Studies director will help students identify an adviser based on WGS specialization, minor field, or second major. Advisers will be drawn from WGS faculty across the university.


Core Courses

Choose 3 of the following:

  • WS 110 - Introduction to Women's Studies
  • WS 200 - Feminist Theory
  • WS 299 - Directed Study or Capstone Seminar
  • Students must complete a capstone course taught or supervised by a Women’s and Gender Studies faculty member and produce a major research paper or essay. In addition, the capstone may be an individual internship or a special project. Students may also satisfy the capstone requirement with an approved Women’s and Gender Studies Seminar or an Internship Seminar, both of which may be cross-listed with another department.


Introductory or 100-level courses from a different department:

Choose 3 of the following from 3 different departments:

Visual and Performing Arts

200-Level Courses: Specialization in two or more departments

The specialization is not within an existing department or discipline, but should cross at least two. Examples could include: Women in Comparative Fiction; Women and Work; Gender and Environment; Gender, War and Militaries; Women and Social Change; Gender, Identity and Sexuality; Gender, Culture and Human Rights; and Feminist Critiques of Globalization. Each student will define a specialization (comprising WGS courses in two or more departments) with their adviser, to be approved by the Women’s and Gender Studies director. These courses can be developed from among the many courses offered within the following departments/programs:

Government and International Relations

  • GOVT 268 - Peace & War
  • GOVT 275 - Gender, Politics, and Development in Africa

International Development and Social Change


  • PHIL 219 - Feminist Theory

Methods and Skills:

One course relevant to student’s WGS specialization may overlap with second major or minor. Alternative methods or skills classes may be approved as exceptions by the Women’s and Gender Studies Director.

Women's and Gender Studies Faculty


María Acosta Cruz, Ph.D.
Michael Addis, Ph.D.
Margarete Arndt, D.B.A.
Kiran Asher, Ph.D.
Belén Atienza, Ph.D.
Denise Humphreys Bebbington, Ph.D. - Director
Parminder Bhachu, Ph.D.
Sarah Buie, M.F.A.
Michael Butler, Ph.D.
Marcia Butzel, Ph.D.
Ya-Chen Chen, Ph.D.
Nicola Curtin, Ph.D.
Carol D’Lugo, Ph.D.
Judith DeCew, Ph.D.
Gino DiIorio, M.F.A.
Jody Emel, Ph.D.
Patricia Ewick, Ph.D.
Rachel Falmagne, Ph.D.
Odile Ferly, Ph.D.
William Fisher, Ph.D.
Ellen Foley, Ph.D.
Beth Gale, Ph.D.
SunHee Kim Gertz, Ph.D.
Abbie Goldberg, Ph.D.
Janette T. Greenwood, Ph.D.
Betsy P. Huang, Ph.D.
Fern Johnson, Ph.D.
Esther Jones, Ph.D.
Lisa Kasmer, Ph.D.
Sharon Krefetz, Ph.D.
Thomas Kuehne, Ph.D.
Nina Kushner, Ph.D.
Deborah Martin, Ph.D.
Deborah Merrill, Ph.D.
Meredith Neuman, Ph.D.
Amy Richter, Ph.D.
Heather L. Roberts, Ph.D.
Dianne Rocheleau, Ph.D.
Laurie Ross, Ph.D.
Robert Ross, Ph.D.
Srinivasan Sitaraman, Ph.D.
Valerie Sperling, Ph.D.
Ora Szekely, Ph.D.
Shelly Tenenbaum, Ph.D.
Robert D. Tobin, Ph.D.
Alice Valentine, M.A.
Virginia Mason Vaughan, Ph.D.
Kristen Williams, Ph.D.
Kristina Wilson, Ph.D.


Cynthia Enloe, Ph.D.
Susan Hanson, Ph.D.
Barbara Thomas-Slayter, Ph.D.


Serena S. Hilsinger, Ph.D.
Dorothy Kaufmann, Ph.D.

Women’s and Gender Studies Courses


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