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American Culture Studies

Topics in WGSS: Sex in the City: Gender Sexuality, and the Urban Landscape

American Culture Studies 3832 - Spring 2020

What is the relationship between sex and the urban life? Cities have long functioned as the epicenter of sexual freedom and expression through the creation of robust networks and communities for subcultures to thrive. They can also be sites of hypersurveillance, administrative violence, and sexual regression through the implementation of various technologies of governance aimed at managing and regulating both sexuality and the cityscape. This course examines the relationship between sexuality, gender and the urban landscape by framing sexuality and gender as active agents in the production, management, and morphology of the urban landscape while simultaneously examining the role that the city has played in shaping understandings of sexuality and gender. Our main focus will be on the ways in which urban social relations and practices, spaces, and institutions are imbedded within and in turn circulate sexual and gendered meaning. The course will introduce students to the interdisciplinary study of urbanity and sexuality through the synthesis of theories, concepts, and insights from history, social science, literature, public policy, and geography. It will give students a critical lens to read and interpret urban landscapes and the variegated sexual and gendered meanings that organize them. Topics covered will include: prostitution/sex work; LGBT identity formation; sexual violence; and public versus private.

Section 01

Topics in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies:
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