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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Jeanette M. Bushnell
GWSS 440
Seattle Campus

Reading Native American Women's Lives

Seminar based on social science writings, autobiographies, biographies, and fiction written by, with, or about indigenous women of the United States and Canada. Offered: jointly with AIS 440.

Class description

This seminar is based on published words written by and about indigenous women of the Americas. One goal of this course is to better understand the lives of these women through extensive and varied writings. This is an appropriate seminar for graduate students and for upper division undergraduate students with some background in Native Studies courses. s.

Student learning goals

To examine historic and contemporary realities of Native American women via written sources

To render visible the complexities of indigenous knowledges from Native women’s perspective

General method of instruction

Read one book or articles/chapters each week and write a short response to the knowledges within the text plus questions it generated about the lives of native women. In class, we will spend the time in discussion based on the responses and questions of the students.

Recommended preparation

Ability to read large amount of text. Ability to critically analyze readings and relate to past knowledges.

Class assignments and grading

Weekly Class Participation 65% (Discussion & Response Papers) Discussion: This is a seminar course where much of the learning occurs in class discussion. All students are expected to have completed the readings assigned for each class meeting and be prepared to discuss them candidly, critically, and in-depth. As you are reading, mark passages that you would like to ask about or comment on in class. Everyone will be expected to share ideas each day. Response Papers: One paper is due every week. Use the prompts below as guidelines. Not all the prompts are pertinent for each reading (500 words, ~2 pages). The purpose of these papers is to help you prepare for discussion,develop your understandings, and develop notes and materials for final project and future study of Native American women.

Final Project [date TBD] – 35% Each student will read one of the poetry books from class. The task is to read the poetry, recall the materials we have covered during the quarter that have connections to the poems, produce a written work and present your ideas to the class.

Thoughtful engagement with the materials. Involvement with class discussions. Quality (quantity) of weekly responses and questions. Quality of final presentation and write-up about a selected book(s) of poetry.


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.
Additional Information
Last Update by Jeanette M. Bushnell
Date: 01/28/2013