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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Amy P Bhatt
BIS 433
Bothell Campus

Gender, Work, and Family

Examines the interlocking institutions of gender, work, and family. Explores the impact of changing patterns of work on the lives of men and women and the effect of changes in work and occupations on demography and family patterns.

Class description

In this course we will analyze the family as a social and economic institution whose meaning and function has evolved over time and is integrally tied to ideas about sexuality and gender. We will interrogate the following questions: Who and what defines a family? What social-structural forces and institutions shape families? How is the family a gendered institution and how does it work to reinforce gender roles? How does the idea of the family support our economic and political systems? Through the course, we will identify historical and contemporary theories about the family and work related to other spheres of political-economic life like the transition to capitalist economies and critiques of capitalism, colonial struggles, global divisions of labor, immigration patterns and migration policy, feminist critiques and imaginations of the household and contemporary debates over marriage.

Student learning goals

Synthesize, critique and extend current scholarship on family, gender and work through effective written and spoken work.

Learn how to link the politics of knowledge production with critical analysis of different modes of inquiry and related standards of accountability.

Develop skills and knowledge for effective political engagement based on feminist critiques of the interlocking dimensions of sexism, racism, ableism, nationalism, capitalism, globalization, and heterosexism.

Be able to "decodeā€ ideas about femininity and masculinity embedded in popular media representations about gender, work, and the family

General method of instruction

Mix of lectures, large group discussion, small group activities, and films.

Recommended preparation

Familiarity with feminist theories or Women Studies is recommended for this course.

Class assignments and grading

Students will be required to maintain a regular reading journal structured by prompts that correspond to class topics; complete class readings; in-class participation in discussions and in group assignments.

Grades will be determined based on turning in assignments on time, the quality of assignments and participation in class, and attending class sessions/film screenings and making up missed work in a timely fashion.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Amy P Bhatt
Date: 01/12/2011