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Feminist Theory

ENGL 096.401
crosslisted as: GSOC 096
instructor(s):
MW 3:30-5
Benn 231
fulfills requirements:
Sector 1: Theory and Poetics of the Standard Major
Sector 2: Difference and Diaspora of the Standard Major

This seminar will introduce students to a range of twentieth- and twenty-first-century feminist theory. Over the course of the semester, we will discuss the intellectual traditions that inform feminist thought (Plato, Marx and Engels, Derrida, Freud, Lacan, and Foucault), the theoretical and political investments of early academic feminism (Beauvoir, Brownmiller, MacKinnon, Rubin, Irigaray, Kristeva, Gilbert and Gubar, among others), and more recent debates about gender, race, power, sexuality, and "women's studies" as a field of inquiry (Sedgwick, Butler, Wiegman, Berlant, Warner, Chow, Brown, Spivak, Scott, Freccero, for instance). We will also analyze the relationship between feminist theory and women's political and social issues through the lens of some contemporary films. Students will write a 12+ page research paper in a series of stages.