Sexualities, Genders and Social Change (SXGN)
This course introduces students to the vocabulary, methods, and theories behind the study of human sexualities and genders. Working with case studies, this course explores how biological, psychological, sociological, cultural, historical, and political determinants as well as experiences connected to "race," class, and (dis)ability shape understandings of genders and sexualities. Topics covered will include representations of sexualities and genders in the media and popular culture, family and work relationships, histories and philosophies of sexualities and genders, sexualities/genders and the law, political movements, self-expression, and mechanisms for enacting social justice.
This course introduces students to the complex intersections between sexuality, gender, race, and indigeneity. Proceeding through a variety of disciplinary approaches, this course explores the complex concepts of race and indigeneity in both Canadian and international contexts and their connections to sexual and gender justice. Topics covered will include intersectionality, the Cohambee River Collective, Two Spirit Identity, Feminist-Indigenous modalities of leadership, Black activism and the queer and trans rights movements of the 70s and 80s, afrofuturism, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, the RiseUp! and the BlackLivesMatter movements, among others.
This course will introduce students to foundational research methodologies (quantitative, qualitative, and mixed) applicable to studies in sexualities and genders. Content will be drawn from disciplinary perspectives in the social sciences, humanities, and fine arts, as well as from interdisciplinary perspectives in the fields of feminist, queer, critical race, disability, and (post) colonial studies. Students will draw on research methods to tackle real-life issues of social, cultural, and political inequity.
This course will provide students with foundational knowledge in contemporary theories relating to sexualities and genders. Content covered will include theories drawn from such areas as queer, queer-of-colour, trans, feminist Marxist/socialist, postmodern and poststructural, critical disability studies & crip theory, feminist standpoint theories, post-feminism, feminist affect theory. Students will explore these topics as they relate to contemporary issues in both local and global contexts.
Activism has been the main driver of social justice movements, which are collective forms of political action that often work outside of established, institutional structures. This course looks at historical and contemporary acts of resistance and the political organizing behind them, with a focus on activist strategies, social justice initiatives, and their underlying theoretical frameworks. Using sexuality and gender as our point of departure, we will investigate the difference between grassroots and mainstream activism, the role of allyship, and the importance of representation and participation in social justice movements.
In this course, students will conduct research and attend weekly seminars on a selected topic related to sexualities, genders, and social change while simultaneously completing a placement with either a community partner (on- or off-campus) or an ongoing faculty research project. The subject matter of the course will thematically connect the interdisciplinary projects being undertaken by those enrolled. Students wishing to take this course must have their project approved by the SXGN Experiential Learning coordinator prior to the end of the previous semester's course selection period.
This course employs the theories and methodologies learned throughout the degree in SXGN while engaging students in practical outreach and advocacy activities that will prepare them for work with stakeholders in multiple settings (community, non-profit, NGOs). Students will work throughout the semester with a campus, community advocacy, or not for profit group to design and execute a major community outreach project with the goal of staging a public event at the end of the semester (such as a fundraiser or symposium). The final week of class will be reserved for reflection on lessons learned, what worked, and opportunities for growth.