Major/Minor in Gender and Sexuality Studies

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Director of Gender and Sexuality Studies

Professor Harper

A component of the Department of Social and Cultural Analysis, the Program in Gender and Sexuality Studies fosters broad interdisciplinary investigation of gender and sexuality as key aspects of human experience past and present, paying particular attention to how they shape social roles and identities in various cultural contexts. Its curriculum makes gender and sexuality central rather than peripheral terms of analysis, while also considering their significance both vis-à-vis each other and in relation to race, ethnicity, locality, nation, and geographic circulation. Most fundamentally, the program encourages students to question gender and sexual norms, wherever they are in effect, and thus to complicate what in many other settings—both academic and non-academic—is often presented as “natural.” In this way, Gender and Sexuality Studies contests the privileging of some categories (e.g., male or heterosexual) over others, and thereby challenges the social and political implications of such hierarchies.