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Feminist and Gender Studies- FG 110/FG 206: Introduction to Feminist and Gender Studies/Women and the Body

Block 1 - FG110: Introduction to Feminist & Gender Studies, Heidi R. Lewis

Block 2 - FG206: Women & the Body, Tonja Olive


This course fulfills the Critical Perspectives: Social Inequality requirement. 

FG110: Introduction to Feminist & Gender Studies is designed to introduce students to Feminist & Gender Studies (FGS), the academic study of gender and sexuality from a feminist, interdisciplinary, and intersectional perspective.  The premise of FGS is that historically, as well as in contemporary societies, gender, like race and class, has been a fundamental source of societal stratification.  It also recognizes that other forms of inequality have been or are based on age, race, ethnicity, religion, or sexual orientation.  Around the world, customs and laws perpetuate gender bias, discrimination, and inequality, while violence against women and children, in both domestic and public spaces, remains a major human rights problem.  Hence, this course will also entail an interdisciplinary and intersectional critique and historical examination of the origins of patriarchy in U.S. culture and abroad.  This course is required for FGS majors and minors.

The purpose of FG206: Women & the Body is to explore the philosophical and rhetorical dimensions of women’s bodily experiences.  In doing so, we will examine issues of women’s identity, subjectivity and embodiment.  Part of the way we will explore these issues is through an investigation of body image, race, reproduction, and sexuality.  Much of the reading in this course focuses on theoretical discussions of these issues.  However, we will also rely on film, music, and narrative to understand the relationship(s) between women’s bodies, their identities, and their definition in society.  

A set of linked, one-block courses that must be taken together, with one instructor in each block; separate grades will be assigned for each block.


  • This course serves as a gateway to the Feminist and Gender Studies major and minor.
  • Both blocks fulfill prerequisites for the FGS major and  minor. Block 1: FG110, provides 1 unit required for the FGS major and minor. Block 2: FG206 provides 1 unit applicable [optional] for the FGS major and minor.
  • In FG110: Introduction to Feminist & Gender Studies, students are required to attend afternoon sessions (approximately 1-2 hours) with the FYE mentor starting at 1:30 pm twice each week.  These sessions will focus mostly on reading, conducting research, and writing in the Colket Center for Academic Excellence and Tutt Library.  Additionally, each Monday (excepting the first Monday of the block), students are required to attend individual conferences with the instructor for 15-30 minutes between 11 am – 3 pm.  Regarding creative projects, students will produce short, thesis-driven videos that explore feminist and gender studies in small groups.
  • In FG206: Women & the Body there will be possible afternoon film viewings and discussion.
  • Occasional field trips—TBD.