Gender and Sexuality Studies Course Descriptions


Gender and Sexuality Studies Lower-Division Courses

SWMS 105g Identity Development of the Contemporary Female (4)

Exploration of identity development in terms of social, political, and cultural constructs; examination of collegiate athletics and the contributions of women of color.

SWMS 106g Identity Development of the Contemporary Male

Exploration of identity development in terms of social, political and cultural constructs; examination of collegiate athletics and the contributions of men of color.

SWMS 210gmw: Social Analysis of Gender (4)

Multidisciplinary survey of gender assumptions in relation to sexuality, mental health, social and political relations, and artistic expression.

SWMS 212gp: Introduction to Gender and Sexuality Studies: American Perspectives (4)

Examination of how gender and sexuality have been constructed, experienced, and legislated.

SWMS 215gw: Introduction to Gender and Sexuality: International Perspectives(4)

History and theory of global feminist movements; case studies in bodily autonomy; labor rights; gender justice.

SWMS 219gp: Introduction to Feminist Theory (4)

Emergence of feminist thought from the Enlightenment to the present; historical development of female subjectivity; advancement of women's rights; feminisms from alternative ideological perspectives.

SWMS 221g: Introduction to Queer Theory (4)

Genealogies of queer theory, from psychoanalytic theories to feminism and post-structuralism; evolving concepts of gender; relation to social justice, resistance and power.

SWMS 227gp: Death and Gender in Urban Contexts (MAYMESTER; 4)

Experiential course examining how beliefs about mortality are produced by history, gender, culture, and context; how the handling of death shapes urban society.


Gender and Sexuality Studies Upper-Division Courses

SWMS 306: Contemporary Issues in LGBTQ Studies (4)

Interdisciplinary analysis of LGBTQ issues; examination of the intersections of gender and sexuality with social class, race, religion and nationality.

SWMS 308: Advanced Gender Theory (4)

Contemporary debates and research in three areas: health bodies, science technologies; feminist/queer analytics in media and representation; critical approaches to race, culture and power.

SMWS 310: Gender and Social Justice (4)

Exploration of the ways in which developments and policies, including neoliberalism, the carceral state, and economic precarity, are connected and gendered.

SWMS 311: Gender and Sexuality Studies: Internship (2, 4, or 8)

Intensive experience with gender-focused community organizations; analysis of relationships between organizations and feminist and queer theory.

SWMS 325: The Science of Sex Differences: A Gender and Sexuality Studies Approach

Critical examination of sex and gender in science using a multidisciplinary gender and sexuality studies approach.

SWMS 336: Health, Gender and Ethnicity (4)

Cross-cultural notions of the body, health, and healing; historic and cultural variability of ideas of reproduction, birth, sexuality, mental illness, and disability.

SWMS 349: Women and the Law (4)

Discussion of the relationship between women and the law in light of feminist jurisprudence, U.S. Supreme Court decisions, and cross-cultural perspectives.

SWMS 355: Transgender Studies (4)

Analysis of transgender behaviors, from androgyny and transvestism to transexuality. Discussion of changing laws, representations, medical standards, and social attitudes towards transgender and intersex people.

SWMS 358: U.S. Gay and Lesbian History (4)

Exploration of shifting social organization and cultural meanings of same-sex desire and cross-gender behaviors in the U.S., primarily during the 20th century.

SWMS 367: Gender and Creative Labor (4)

Exploration of contemporary labor issues from feminist and gender studies perspectives.

SWMS 385m: Men and Masculinity (4)

Interdisciplinary examination of social, personal meanings of masculinity; variety of male experience by social class, race, sexuality, and age; emerging masculinities of the future.

SWMS 389: Gender, Sexuality, and Food Cultures in the U.S. (MAYMESTER; 4)

Exploration of food, eating, production, sustainability, access, and culture from a multidisciplinary perspective.

SWMS 390: Special Problems

Supervised, individual studies. No more than one registration permitted. Enrollment by petition only.

SWMS 392: Junior Seminar in Gender and Sexuality Studies (4)

Research methods in gender and sexuality studies scholarship; study of feminist, queer and post-colonial epistemologies.

SWMS 410: Senior Seminar in Gender and Sexuality Studies (4)

Application of gender and sexuality research methods to individual student projects with an emphasis on feminist, queer, and post-colonial scholarship.

SWMS 425: Queer Los Angeles (4)

Interdisciplinary study of queer Los Angeles through examination of histories, memoirs, essays, fiction, poetry, documentaries, narrative films, and local archives.

SWMS 490x: Directed Research (1-8, max 12)

Independent research and readings. Not available for graduate credit.

SWMS 492: Gender and Sexuality Studies: Honors Thesis (4)

Writing of the honors thesis; for students in the Gender Studies Honors Program.

SWMS 499: Special Topics (2-4, max 8)

Study of a selected problem, period, or theme through interdisciplinary approaches.

  • Gender & Sexuality Studies
  • University of Southern California
  • Mark Taper Hall of Humanities, 422
  • 3501 Trousdale Parkway
  • Los Angeles, California
  • 90089-4352 USA