New WGSS Course for Fall 2016: Masculinities

This course surveys interdisciplinary studies that approach masculinity in two related ways. First, we will analyze masculinity as it is performed and embodied, that is, as what it means to “be a man” is produced through bodily acts that take place within specific social spaces. But second, and just as importantly, we will consider challenges that “masculinity” poses as an object of study. What exactly are we isolating when we speak of “masculinity?” What assumptions and reflexes shape how we recognize it? Can we even speak of "masculinity" as a single thing? We will situate these questions within the broader historical, cultural, and material forces that constitute multiple masculinities and relate them to each other. One of its primary goals is thus to help students interpret masculinities on the move – as they circulate through media, political theory, and institutions, and as they cross borders, oceans, and urban spaces. Among other topics, we will consider female, trans, and queer masculinities; the masculinities of men of color; men and masculinity in feminist theory;masculinity and globalization; and critical approaches to masculine subjectivity and embodiment.