Rachel A Cichowski
POL S 565
Examination of current topics on the theory and practice of public law. Content varies according to recent developments in the field and the research interests of the instructor.
Gender, Law and International Politics POL S 565, Winter 2011
This doctoral level course examines the local, transnational and global effects of gender on international law and politics. World leaders are increasingly taking note of the integral connection between the status of women and a host of global issues, from public health to economic development (see the Millennium Development Goals). This reflects the fact that women, as activists, leaders, and victims, are a major variable affecting historical and contemporary development and reform in political and legal systems around the globe. Despite this empirical reality, gender as both cause and effect continues to remain noticeably absent from mainstream research in many fields of political science. In this course, we will seek to problematize this position, highlight promising new trends, and the opportunities this creates for future research. The course will emphasize the relevance and centrality of gender issues to key theoretical debates and empirical puzzles at the heart of international relations, comparative politics and public law fields. The work of feminist scholars will be utilized to provide tools to understand the complex ways gender can both structure and be structured by our political and legal systems. Complementing this work, the course will also draw from a growing body of research which engages gender both theoretically and empirically but does so within the context of mainstream international relations theory, comparative institutional analysis and socio-legal studies.
The course also emphasizes original research. The course readings provide the theoretical frameworks for independent research on real world empirical puzzles in the area of women’s rights as human rights. Students will be expected to conduct research on a topic of their choosing that will culminate in a Research Design that will be turned in at the end of the quarter.
Student learning goals
General method of instruction
Class assignments and grading
Critical writing assignments (short papers) and final Research Design Paper