With cries for freedom ringing in today's headlines, and the U.S. proposing to bring liberty to countries across the globe, how may we come to understand what freedom means to different societies? Might one group's freedom lead to another's oppression? How do women, in particular, balance their struggles for national independence, civil rights, and individual fulfillment? In this course, we will focus primarily on fiction written by women living in Africa, South Asia, Latin America, and the Caribbean to consider how ideas about gender, empire, and sovereignty impact women's lives and differ between cultures and histories. Texts may include fiction by Nadine Gordimer, Doris Lessing, Isabel Allende, Jessica Hagedorn, Marguerite Duras, Arundhati Roy, Jean Rhys, Tsitsi Dangarembga, and Shani Mootoo, as well as selected critical essays and several films like The Lover and The House of the Spirits.