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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Julie Shayne
BIS 310
Bothell Campus

Women, Culture, and Development

Facilitates a critical understanding of the social, cultural, political, and economic positions of women in the developing world. Addresses colonialism and post-colonialism, feminist theories of development, and practices of globalization.

Class description

The purpose of this course is to facilitate a critical understanding of the multiple social, cultural, political, and economic positions of women in the “Third World.� We will look at a variety of topics including: colonialism, post-colonialism, feminist theories of development, paid and unpaid labor, women’s bodies as culture, population politics, physical and economic violence, globalization, and feminism. (This class counts as a Tier 2 requirement for the Human Rights minor.)

Student learning goals

You should understand the meaning of gender and the gendered division of labor.

You should be able to think critically about terms like Third World and development.

You should understand the connections between politics, economy, and culture as manifest in and on women’s lives and bodies.

You should understand some of the ways women challenge political, social, cultural, and economic obstacles with which they are confronted.

You should understand the relationships between First and Third World economies and policies, particularly as experienced by women.

You should be a strong and capable writer with solid analytical skills.

General method of instruction

This is a reading and writing heavy course. The course will be a mix of lecture, class discussion, and some small group discussions. We will use a variety of different types of text including: Films, Fiction, Social Science, History, and Testimonies.

Recommended preparation

None required but you should buy the books in advance: Required texts: 1) Dangarembga, Tsitsi. 1988. Nervous Conditions. Seattle: Seal Press. 2) Seager, Joni. 2009. The Penguin Atlas of Women in the World (Fourth Edition). London: Penguin Books. 3) Sen, Gita, and Caren Grown. 1987. Development, Crises, and Alternative Visions: Third World Women's Perspectives. New York: Monthly Review Press.

Recommended: 1) Bhavnani, Kum-Kum, John Foran, and Priya Kurian, eds. 2003. Feminist Futures: Reimagining Women, Culture and Development. London: Zed Books.

2) Ehrenreich, Barbara and Arlie Russell Hochschild, eds. 2002. Global Woman: Nannies, Maids, and Sex Workers in the New Economy. New York: Henry Holt and Company.

3) Tobar, HĂ©ctor. 2011. The Barbarian Nurseries: A Novel. NY: Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

PLEASE NOTE: IF YOU BUY THE BOOK ONLINE PLEASE MAKE SURE YOU BUY THE APPROPRIATE EDITION

Class assignments and grading

This is a reading and writing heavy course. The course will be a mix of lecture, class discussion, and some small group discussions. We will use a variety of different types of text including: Films, Fiction, Social Science, History, and Testimonies.

This is an analytically demanding and writing intensive course. You will be required to do section write-ups, and a take-home midterm and final There may be occasional pop quizzes. Grades will be based on sound analysis, clear writing, informed class participation, and attention to detail.


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 Julie Shayne
Date: 02/24/2014