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and Politics Sociology 255, Bowdoin College Spring 2011

Professor Wendy Christensen Office: 402 Adams Hall Contact: or 725-3268 Office hours: Mondays and Wednesdays 1-2pm and by appointment. In this course we examine the interaction of gender relations and U.S. politics from a sociological perspective. We will explore the effects of politics on womens and men's economic situations, on gender relationships, and on social conflict. In this class we also investigate the ways that gender organizes participation in collective decision-making, contributes to the formation and mobilization of specific identities and interests, and infuses our understandings of and participation in political processes. We will also examine how politics reflects gender identities and interests, and how the state activities maintain and change gender relations. We will employ comparative cases from other countries, and explore the gendered standing of the U.S. in international relations. Course Readings: The following required books are available for purchase at the Bowdoin Bookstore: Brush, L. D. (2003). Gender and Governance. Walnut Creek: AltaMira Press. de Volo, L. B. (2001). Mothers of Heroes and Martyrs: Gender Identity Politics in Nicaragua, 1979-1999. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. Stein, Arlene. (2001) The Stranger Next Door: The Story of a Small Community's Battle over Sex, Faith, and Civil Rights. Boston: Beacon Press Yuval-Davis, N. (1997). Gender & Nation. London: Sage Publications. Readings must be completed before class on the day that they are due. If a reading is listed under Monday, April 4 then it must be completed before class on April 4. You will need to complete the readings the day before class in order to participate in classroom and online discussions. I reserve the right to add (and to omit) readings during the course of the semester. I will always let you know the week before if I am making any changes to the readings. How to get in touch with me: Email is a great way to reach me with any questions. I promise to respond to your email within 24 hours. You are encouraged to stop by office hours at least once during the semester, or make an appointment to see me at another time. If my office door is open at any other time, you are always welcome to stop by.

Assignments: (1) Online discussion participation: Every week (starting with Week 2) you are expected to post at least 250 words of questions/comments to the discussion board on the course website. Original postings done class meeting and responses to other students postings that substantively add insights into the issues raised count. You may post as often as you would like online. Timely comments and questions based on class discussion, personal anecdotes that do not fit in the framework of class discussion but relate to the readings, ideas you

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thought would be discussed but were not etc. count as a participation in online discussions. The quality and quantity of these posts count as 20% of your final grade. (2) Reading Analysis Papers: For any 3 weeks of your choice, you must hand a short (~1000 word) reading analysis paper. These papers are due in class on the Friday of the weeks readings you choose. These papers should be organized, have an argument and conclusion, topic sentences and be proofread for grammar and spelling. Your paper should (a) compare and contrast one reading with another or (b) use a reading to discuss/analyze some personal experience youve had or (c) apply a reading to analyze a film, photos, ads or a news article relevant to the course. Your paper will be graded based on your critical engagement with the weeks readings. Each paper will be worth 10% of your final grade (for 30% total). You may not rewrite papers, but if you wish to write an additional paper you may, and that grade will be averaged in to your 30%. You must complete one paper by the end of Week 5, a minimum of two papers must be done by the end of Week 10, and all three need to be completed by the end of Week 13. (3) Final project. Your final project is a 10-12 page paper that is a case study of the relationship between gender and politics anywhere in the world. You need to pick a political issue or organization that is relevant for studying gender and politics and focus on analyzing how the concepts of the course apply to your chosen case. It may be American or comparative in focus (i.e. comparing the U.S. with another country). Your paper could be about a social movement, a political organization, or a particular political issue (like war, welfare, or the representation of women in politics). The paper has to be done in stages, each of which carries points toward the final grade. Your paper must make real, appropriate use of at least three of the books or articles of the assigned reading list as well as whatever outside research sources you need (a minimum of three additional academic books or articles). I strongly encourage you to meet with me about your project during the semester. The stages and the final paper count for 30% of your final grade. Project Stages: 1. Monday 3/28: A paragraph description of your paper topic due in class. 2. Monday 4/11: A list of references (course readings and non-course readings you intend to cite) due in class. 3. Monday 4/25: A paragraph summarizing the argument you intend to make due in class. 4. Monday 5/9 and Wednesday 5/11: A short 10 minute presentation of your paper topic and findings in class. 5. Wednesday 5/18: A hard copy of your paper is due in my office or my 3rd floor mailbox. Grading Criteria: A B C D F Final Grades: 20% Attendance and participation 2 Shows mastery of the course material and demonstrates exceptional critical skills and originality. Demonstrates a thorough and above average understanding of the material. Demonstrates a thorough and satisfactory understanding of the material. Demonstrates a marginally satisfactory understanding of the basic material. Does not demonstrate a satisfactory understanding of the basic material.

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20% 30% 30%

Online discussion contributions 3 Reading analysis papers Final project

Written work: All assignments must be double-spaced, with 1 inch margins, and 12 point font. Acceptable fonts are Times, Times New Roman, Arial, Georgia, or Helvetica. Pages must be numbered. On the first page include your full name, date, and the name of the assignment. It is always a good idea to put your name on each subsequent page someplace in case a page is separated from the others. Double-sided printing is welcomed. Dont bother with a title page as they waste paper.

Late and missed assignments: Work must be handed in, in class, on the day it is due. If you cannot make class that day, you must email me the assignment before the class begins. Late assignments will only be accepted with prior consent (given on a case-by-case basis), and will lose a letter grade for each day they are late. Attendance: Attendance is required. You may miss two classes without penalty, assuming that you turn in the days assignment prior to class. Each absence beyond the second will result in your grade being lowered. If you must miss a class, it is your responsibility to get the notes and assignments from another student. If You Need Help: Do not hesitate to contact me if you need assistance. The key to success is to head off problems before they turn into emergencies. The sooner you get in touch with me about an issue, the sooner we can work to solve it together. Special accommodations: If you require special accommodations to participate in, or to complete the work in this course, please let me know within the first two weeks of class so that we can make the necessary arrangements. Academic honesty: I fully expect you to follow the Bowdoin College Academic Honor Code. Anytime you are required to turn in individual work I expect that what you turn in will be written solely by you and will be unique from that of your classmates. Students who attempt to pass off the work of others as their own or assist others in doing so will receive zero points for the work and will be subjected to disciplinary action as determined by the college. Please ask if you have any questions about what is and is not acceptable. CBB has put together a guide about avoiding academic misconduct at Additionally, the Bowdoin Library has an online guide for citing sources properly at

Week 1: Introductions Monday 1/24: Introductions Wednesday 1/26: Warner, J. (2010) The New Momism New York Times Oct. 29 Steinem, G. (2008) Women are Never Front Runners New York Times Jan. 8

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Week 2: Gender theory Monday 1/31: Scott, J. W. (2000). Some Reflections on Gender and Politics. In M. M. Ferree, J. Lorber & B. B. Hess (Eds.), Revisioning Gender. New York: Rowman and Littlefield Publishers Wednesday 2/1: Connell, R. W. (2009) Gender Relations in The Matrix Reader by Ferber, Jimenez, Herrera, and Samuals (Eds.) Chapter 2 (pages 21-35) McGraw-Hill Higher Education Week 3: Political theory Monday 2/7: Lukes, S. (2008) Keyword: Power (Chapter 54) In J. Goodwin & J. M. Jasper (Eds.), The Contexts Reader. New York: W.W. Norton. Chapters 1-3: Brush, L. D. (2003). Gender and Governance. Walnut Creek: AltaMira Press. Wednesday 2/9: Chapters 4-6: Brush, L. D. (2003). Gender and Governance. Walnut Creek: AltaMira Press. Weeks 4, 5, 6: Macro: Nation states, citizenship and war Week 4: The Nation State and Citizenship Monday 2/14: Chapters 1-3: Yuval-Davis, N. (1997). Gender & Nation. London: Sage Publications. Wednesday 2/16: Chapters 4-6: Yuval-Davis, N. (1997). Gender & Nation. London: Sage Publications. Week 5: The Welfare State Monday 2/21: Borchorst, A. (2000) Feminist Thinking about the Welfare State In M. M. Ferree, J. Lorber & B. B. Hess (Eds.), Revisioning Gender. Thousand Oaks, Calif.: Sage Publications. Fraser, Nancy, and Linda Gordon. 1994. "A Genealogy of Dependency: Tracing a Keyword of the U.S. Welfare State." Signs, 19 (2): 309-336. Wednesday 2/23: Haney, Lynne, & March, M. 2003. Married fathers and caring daddies: Welfare reform and the discursive politics of paternity. Social Problems, 50, 461-481. Mayer, Victoria 2008. Crafting a new conservative consensus on welfare reform: Redefining citizenship, social provision, and the public/private divide. Social Politics,15 (2): 154-181 Week 6: 2/28 War Monday 2/28: Christensen, W. M., & Ferree, M. M. (2008). Cowboy of the World? Gender Discourse and the Iraq War Debate. Qualitative Sociology, 31 (Special Issue on Political Violence), 287-306. Nagel, J. (1998). Masculinity and nationalism: gender and sexuality in the making of nations. Ethnic and Racial Studies, 21(2). Monday 7pm: Pray the Devil Back to Hell (2008) Christensen, Soc 255 4

Wednesday 3/2: Bergner, D. (2010). An Uncompromising Woman New York Times Oct. 22. t.html?ref=thefemalefactor Carvajal, D. (2010) A Female Approach to Peacekeeping New York Times March 5. ffpeace.html?ref=thefemalefactor Weeks 7, 8, 9 and 10: Meso: Identity politics and social movements Week 7: Social Movements Introduction Monday 3/7: Theorizing Gender in Social Movements (Chapter 3) in Kuumba, M. B. (2001). Gender and Social Movements. Walnut Creek, CA: AltaMira Press. Krauss, C. (1998). Challenging Power: Toxic Waste Protests and the Politicization of White, Working Class Women. In N. A. Naples (Ed.), Community Activism and Feminist Politics (pp. 129-150). NYC: Routledge. Wednesday 3/9: No class Spring Break: 3/11-3/27 Week 8: Identity politics Monday 3/28: Bernstein, M. (2005). Identity Politics. Annual Review of Sociology, 31, 47-74. Introduction and Chapters 1-4: de Volo, L. B. (2001). Mothers of Heroes and Martyrs: Gender Identity Politics in Nicaragua, 1979-1999. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. Due: A paragraph description of your final project topic. Wednesday 3/30: Chapters 5-7 and Conclusion: de Volo, L. B. (2001). Mothers of Heroes and Martyrs: Gender Identity Politics in Nicaragua, 1979-1999. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. Week 9 Feminism Monday 4/4: Gluck, S. B. (1998). Whose Feminism, Whose History. In N. A. Naples (Ed.), In Community Activism and Feminist Politics: Organizing Across Race, Class, and Gender (pp. 31-56). New York: Routledge. Rupp, Leila and Verta Taylor 1999. Forging feminist identity in an international movement: A collective identity approach to twentieth-century feminism Signs, 24 (2): 363-386. Wednesday 4/6: Traister, R. (2001) Sarah Palin's Grab for Feminism Salon Broadsheet, June 1. Young, C. (2008) Why Feminists Hate Sarah Palin The Wall Street Journal, Sept. 15. Harding, K. (2010) 5 Ways of Looking at Sarah Palins Feminism Jezebel. May 26.

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Rosen, H. (2010) Is the Tea Party a Feminist Movement? Slate, May 12. Daum, M. (2010) Sarah Palin, Feminist Los Angeles Times, May 20. 20100520,0,2323556.column Week 10: Transnational social movements Monday 4/11: Desai, M. (2002) Transnational Solidarity: Womens Agency, Structural Adjustment, and Globalization (page 14-39) in Naples, N. A., & Desai, M. Women's Activism and Globalization: Linking local struggles and transnational politics. New York: Routledge. Friedman, Elisabeth. 2003. Gendering the Agenda: The Impact of the Transnational Womens Rights Movement at the UN Conferences of the 1990s. Womens Studies International Forum 26 (4) 313-331. Due: A list of references (course readings and non-course readings) that you intend to cite in your final project. Monday 7pm: Maquilapolis (2006) Wednesday 4/13: Mendez, Jennifer Bickman. (2002). ''Creating Alternatives from a Gender Perspective: Transnational Organizing for Maquila Workers' Rights in Central America.'' Pp. 121-41 in Women's Activism and Globalization: Linking Local Struggles with Transnational Politics, edited by Nancy A. Naples and Manisha Desai. New York: Routledge. Weeks 11, 12, 13, Micro: Political participation and public policy Week 11: The personal is political Monday 4/18: Chapters 1-6: Stein, Arlene. (2001) The Stranger Next Door: The Story of a Small Community's Battle over Sex, Faith, and Civil Rights. Boston: Beacon Press Wednesday 4/20: Chapters 7-10: Stein, Arlene. (2001) The Stranger Next Door: The Story of a Small Community's Battle over Sex, Faith, and Civil Rights. Boston: Beacon Press Week 12: Political participation Monday 4/25: Elder, L., & Greene, S. (2007). The Myth of "Security Moms" and "NASCAR Dads": Parenthood, Political Stereotypes, and the 2004 Election. Social Science Quarterly, 88(1). Shannon, V. (2010) Equal Rights for Women? Survey Says: Yes, but ... New York Times July 1. poll.html?ref=feministmovement Due: A paragraph summarizing the argument you intend to make in your final project. Wednesday 4/27: Ferree, M. M. (2006). Angela Merkel: What Does it Mean to Run as a Woman? German Politics and Society, 24(1).

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Baird, J. (2008) From Seneca Falls to Sarah Palin? Newsweek Sept. 13. palin.html Week 13: Gendering Public Policy Monday 5/2: Bennhold, K. (2010) Waging War and Peace With Women New York Times Nov. 2. letter.html?ref=thefemalefactor Wednesday 5/4: Messner, M. A. (2007). The Masculinity of the Governator: Muscle and Compassion in American Politics. Gender & Society, 21(4). Week 14 5/9: In class project presentations ** Final paper due May 18th by 5pm.**

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