Gender Studies 210: Problems with Privilege

This course engages the now widespread liberal activist slogan “check your privilege” so prevalent on U.S. college campuses. What does it mean today to “check” privilege? Is “checking privilege” enough? When consuming the news and educating ourselves in class, whose voices get to be heard? Who aren’t we hearing from? What questions haven’t we raised? How do we listen effectively? Intersectionality as theory and method responds to many of these questions. It posits that various structures of discrimination and privilege (such as sexism, racism, and colonialism among others) intersect, influencing our daily lived experience as well as our social institutions and policies.  This course presents foundational concepts that allow us to understand power through debates in the field of Gender Studies, and a genealogy of intersectionality and its discontents.  The course explores theories and methods based on intersectionality beyond a race/gender pairing, engages critiques of intersectionality, and facilitates a more nuanced understanding of challenges and opportunities surrounding social justice and identity through the lens of intersectional analysis. May be elected as Indigeneity, Race, and Ethnicity Studies 210.

Distribution Area
Students entering Fall 2024 or later: Power and Equity (PEQ)
Students entering prior to Fall 2024: Cultural Pluralism (CP DIST)
Students entering prior to Fall 2024: Social Sciences (SO DIST)