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HH2310 Gender: History, Culture, and Representation

‘The story is no longer about the things that have happened to women and men and how they have reacted to them; instead it is about how the subjective and collective meanings of women and men as categories of identity have been constructed.' (Joan Scott, Gender and the Politics of History, New York, 1988, p.6).
  • Module Coordinator:
    • Dr Catherine Lawless (CGWS)
  • Lecturers:
    • Staff in Classics, History, History of Art and CGWS
  • Duration:
    • Hilary term 
  • Contact Hours:
    • 22 (One lecture per week, and one seminar weekly from and including weeks 8-12)
  • Weighting:
    • 5 ECTS
  • Assessment:
    • ONE exercise based upon the analysis of a text or a work of art (1,000 words) arising from one of the seminars, and ONE essay addressing some of the major themes in the module (2, 500 words).
      There is no final examination for this module; marks are divided between the analysis and the essay in the proportion 30:70.
This module will examine the histories and representations of gender, seeking to understand how gender is constructed by societies, institutions and individuals, through the critical analysis of texts, works of art and public actions. Gender, its role, its construction and its historiography will be brought together by scholars across the school in an undergraduate interdisciplinary module. The operation of gender ‘as a tool of analysis’ will be examined in histories of the body, sexuality, medicine, religion, politics, institutions and representations in a variety of texts and contexts which will show the inherent instability and elusive nature of many gendered identities.

Learning Outcomes:

On successful completion of this module students will be able to:

  • understand the constructions of gender in history
  • identify the main trends of gender historiography
  • show a clear grasp of  the relationship between the sexed body and the gendered body in history and representation.
  • analyze relevant textual and visual evidence
  • engage critically with principal interpretations concerning gender
  • articulate well-researched views both orally and in writing

Teaching Methods

This module is taught through weekly lectures and small-group seminars. Students attend the lecture and one seminar per week. Attendance, preparation for the seminars and presentations are compulsory.