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Theories Gender/Sexuality

ENGL 096.401
crosslisted as: GSWS 096
instructor(s):
MW 3:30-5
fulfills requirements:
Sector 1: Theory and Poetics of the Standard Major
Sector 2: Difference and Diaspora of the Standard Major
Sector IV: Interdisciplinary Humanities and Social Sciences of the College's General Education Curriculum
Cultural Diversity in the US of the College's General Education Curriculum

What is sexuality? Does it exist in the body or the mind? Is it a collection of actions, desires, and fantasies, or is it rather a disposition, a way of seeing oneself or being seen, an identity? Does what we want depend on who we are? Does what we do define who we are? How have communities organized themselves historically around sexuality, and what are the fractures and solidarities in contemporary LGBT communities? This course will attempt to address such questions by introducing students to several of the classic texts in the history and theory of sexuality. We will trace the politics and meanings of non-normative sexualities and genders across time. Topics will include sexology; responses to HIV/AIDS; sex panics and sex radicalism; transgender histories; the politics of race, class, region, and religion; queer and feminist generations; queer spaces; gay normalization and the commodification of 'queer.' This course also serves as an introduction to several key concepts in cultural studies and social theory.