International relations

Gender and (Global) Politics: Subjects Practices and Institutions

Module code: 002RADU
Level 6
30 credits in autumn teaching
Teaching method: Seminar
Assessment modes: Not yet finalised

Dr Louiza Odysseos The aim of the module is to provide students with a critical way of analyzing (global) politics. Historically, politics has been thought of as a discrete activity taking place in the public sphere, which was the exclusive domain of men. It was supposed, not only that women were incapable of participating in this sphere, but, more recently, that they were less interested in politics than men. Such assumptions have had the effect of perpetuating the relative exclusion of women from political life. This actual and symbolic marginalization rests on gendered assumptions about what politics is, and where it is located, and who 'does' politics. In other words, our gendered assumptions affect not only the real lives of `women¿ and `men¿ but conceptions of politics and political subjects as such. Therefore, this course interrogates how an understanding of gender as helps us ask critical questions about the spaces, institutions and practices of politics. It does so by introducing students to prominent theories of gender: biological, psychological, social constructivist etc. It, moreover, surveys the historical evolution of feminism as critical theory and practice and the theorization of masculinity. From such theoretical bases it then examines the gendered nature of central political institutions, such as `the state¿, law; political practices such as democratic participation, acts of citizenship, acts of protest and resistance, development; as well as, the gendering of political subjects such as human rights holders, soldiers, and the expendable subjects of neoliberalism. This module is assessed by Assessed by a 70% 3.5K essay, 20% 1k Essay, 10% 20 minute Group presentation. We meet each week for a three hour seminar combining mini-lectures, group work, analytical exercises and open discussion.