Sexuality & Gender in History (HIST*3020) | College of Arts

Sexuality & Gender in History (HIST*3020)

Code and section: HIST*3020*01

Term: Winter 2017

Instructor: Christine Ekholst


Course Synopsis:

This course will explore gender and sexuality in pre-modern and modern history. The course is thematic and incorporates a long time span as well as various geographical regions. The focus is primarily on western culture, as represented in Western Europe and North America, but we will also briefly discuss the Soviet bloc. The main learning outcome of the course is for students to explore how gender, sexuality, class, and race are interconnected and given various meanings in different time periods.
The first section of the course will focus on the pre-modern time period and explore topics such as domestic violence; Elizabeth I; female slave owners in Jamaica and male same-sex relations. The second half of the course examines the modern period with a focus on the two World Wars. Topics include mixed-race relationships, homophobic propaganda in Nazi Germany, post-traumatic sexual disorders in veterans and Playboy magazine. We will explore how views of masculinity, femininity, and sexuality changed - and stayed the same - throughout the course of the twentieth century.

This course is analytical and problem-oriented and not focused on the major historical events themselves. Instead we will explore unknown and sometimes controversial aspects of history. The course is meant to be exploratory and focused on developing independent and analytical thinking. Through this course the students will develop a deeper understanding of the role gender has played in history as well as its interconnection with other social categories. Students will also improve their critical thinking through examining and assessing historical arguments. Classes consist of one three-hour lecture. Active class participation will be crucial for the learning experience.

Method of Evaluation and Weights:

15% Participation in in-class activities
20% Book Review
20% Book analysis
25% Midterm Exam
20% Final Exam

Texts and/or Resources Required:

Readings will be posted on Courselink except for the books for the book review (which are available in the library and online) and the book for the book analysis, Helen Z Smith, Not So Quiet (available in the bookstore and online).

*Please note:  This is a preliminary web course description only.  The department reserves the right to change without notice any information in this description.  The final, binding course outline will be distributed in the first class of the semester.