This class aims to provide an advanced engagement with some of the key themes and methodologies within feminist theory and feminist analyses of applied issues. We will begin with consideration of a fundamental question: who are the subjects of feminist theory? This question will lead us to consider controversies concerning how to define the category "woman." We will also explore the ways in which various feminist theorists understand the sex/gender distinction and how those concepts are related and distinguished. Next, we will turn to theories of gender-based inequality, in particular we will examine various accounts of gendered oppression and investigate the concept of intersectionality as essential element of any theory of oppression. In the second half of the class, we will engage with several applied issues, including: feminist analyses and disagreements over selling sexual services such as in pornography, prostitution and surrogacy, the gendered division of labor and its impacts on women's equality as well as the racial dimensions of the problem and potential solutions, and the role of sexual violence in gender-based inequality (including engagement with the #metoo movement and its critics).
Course Attributes: BU Hum; BU BA; AS HUM; AS SC; EN H