The Women's and Gender Studies Program at Ohio Wesleyan is an interdisciplinary program that examines how historical and current constructions of gender impact society. The program has a three-fold mission. First, we aim to engage students in the intellectual content of the discipline, which examines women’s issues, the role that constructions of gender play in shaping our thinking and social institutions, and the relationship between gender and other aspects of identity, including race, class, age, religion, and sexuality in society. Second, we strive to instill in students the importance of interdisciplinary inquiry. They develop an understanding of women’s and gender issues from an interdisciplinary perspective; that is, one that recognizes the interconnections among the disciplines and that draws on the methodologies and knowledge-bases of more than one discipline so as to analyze problems related to women and gender in their full and multi-faceted characters. Third, we aim to show our students the real-life implications of their academic engagement in the context of globalization. That is, we challenge students to be cognizant of the social and ethical implications of knowledge practices and to see the relationship between theory and practice in both local and global contexts.

Curricular Goals:

The Women’s and Gender Studies Program is dedicated to helping students to develop rigorous analyses of the gendered dimensions of culture, politics, ideas and texts. We aim to teach our students the history, analysis and practice of feminist scholarship and its connection to political service and activism. To that end, we require our students to take an introductory course, a senior level theory seminar, a course dedicated to analyses of representations of gender in the media and to choose between taking a course dedicated to examining current feminist scholarship on sexuality or a course that focuses on women’s movements in a global context. The required courses in the major and minor explore gender and justice issues, provide analytic methods and conceptual tools to conduct rigorous analysis and teach our students how to analyze and practice feminist scholarship as well as examine relations between feminist scholarship and activism. The elective courses do the same in the context of their field of study.

Women’s and Gender Studies course are categorized in two ways: (I) Program Courses are interdisciplinary, taught within the WGS program, and carry a WGS prefix and course number. Some of these courses are also cross-listed with other departments. These courses focus on the study of women and constructions of gender through the frameworks of feminist theories, methodologies and activism. These courses explore how constructions of femininity and masculinity, coupled with additional social locations and identities (race/ethnicity, socio-economic class, sexuality and nationality) shape our social world and our individual subjectivities. (II) Electives are courses taught by faculty whose primary appointment is in another department or program. These classes generally address the study of women and gender within the context of a particular discipline (such as English or History).

Requirements for Women’s and Gender Studies Major:

Major: A minimum of ten units consisting of: WGS 110, WGS 325, either WGS 350 or 351, WGS 499 and any two additional program courses. The additional four units can be chosen from the list of electives or program courses. At least seven out of the 10 courses must be 250 or higher.

WGS 110
WGS 325
WGS 350 or WGS 351
WGS 499
Two Additional Program Courses
Remaining Four Units from Electives:
WGS 250, WGS 266, WGS 310 (variable topics course; can be taken multiple times), WGS 340, WGS 350, WGS 351, WGS 375, WGS 420, WGS 490, WGS 491, WGS 495, EDU 100.2, ENG 224, 266, 268, 278, 348, 350, 352, 354, 360, 362, 415 HIST 375, 385B, HMCL 124, 251, 265, PE 300.4, PG 260, 300.5, 371, 372, 373, PHIL 211, 250, PSYC 300.14, REL 300.1, 300.3, 352 SOAN 348, 349, 351

Requirements for Minor:

Minimum of five units consisting of: WGS 110; either WGS 325, WGS 350 or WGS
351; and three additional units from either program courses or electives.