Program Director: Dr. Francesca Coppa, Professor of English
Advisory Board: Dr. Maura Finkelstein, Assistant Professor of Anthropology
Dr. Margo Hobbs, Associate Professor of Art History
Dr. Casey J. Miller, Assistant Professor of Anthropology
Dr. Katherine Richmond, Associate Professor of Psychology
Dr. Beth Schachter, Professor of Theatre
Why do women and men still have wage inequities? How do different societies and cultures define femininity and masculinity in intersection with ethnic histories and mythologies of racial difference? What does the history of medically defined and racially specific gender categories (male, female, and transgender) reveal about the way in which power flows through a society? When we explore ideas about racial otherness and masculinity, for instance, as they are embedded in our world (films we see, sciences we study and practice, etc.), what new visions of societal and global life might we build?
These are just some of the questions that Women’s and Gender Studies asks of the world. The Women’s and Gender Studies Program at Muhlenberg offers a six course minor that students can combine with any major. Recent graduates have majored in biology, psychology, media and communication, sociology, history, English, mathematics and religion studies. Some have gone into careers in anthropology, public health, law, publishing, and public policy making; others have gone on to graduate study in teaching and medicine.
By completing the Women’s and Gender Studies program, students learn how gender is shaped by and shapes social structures, everyday practices, conventions of representation, and the production of knowledge. When a student graduates they will have mastered the ability to connect scholarly research to real-world applications. Our graduates bring those problem-solving skills to all of their future endeavors.
The current list of Women’s and Gender Studies electives offers students coursework in 14 different majors, and the program adds new classes every year. All Women’s and Gender Studies minors also have a shared scholarly experience when they complete the program’s single required course, WST 202 - Topics in Women’s and Gender Studies . This core class teaches students the transnational history of Women’s and Gender Studies and, in addition, the latest thinking in these areas: feminism, sexuality studies, masculinity studies, and queer studies.