May 6, 2009

Works Cited Policy

GWSS 3004
Works Cited Policy

This policy applies to the following papers:
a. Position paper on Family Values
b. Position paper on Sex Wars
c. Revised Feminism Paper

Note: I prefer* that you use MLA documentation in your papers. For more information on how to use MLA, check out these links:

*If you are more familiar with another documentation style, you may use that style instead of MLA. Be sure to identify your alternate style at the top of your works cited page.

Continue reading "Works Cited Policy" »

April 28, 2009


6:20-6:30 Announcements + preparation
6:30-7:10 Destruction of Family Values Group
7:10-7:15 Break + set-up for next group
7:15-7:55 Mommy Wars Group
7:55-8:00 Break + set-up for next group
8:00-8:40 Sex Wars and Pornography
8:40-end Student evaluations of class

If you are presenting next week, plan ahead to make sure that you have everything that you need for your presentation and that you can set up within 5 minutes. Also, make sure that I receive copies of your handouts/bibliography. To ensure that I receive all of your handouts, you should email me in advance ( with copies of everything (the four handouts + bibliography)—please attach them as word documents.

April 24, 2009

Feminism Peer Review Groups + Group Presentation Meetings

Here are 2 other things I mentioned in class on Tuesday:

1. You will have about 20 minutes at the end of class to meet with your groups (presentation groups) to discuss your feminist reflection papers. In preparation for this meeting, type up one of the key examples that you plan to use to explain your definition of feminism. Make sure to list what reading/s you will use to explain this and how you will use the reading/s.

2. If you are presenting next week (5.5), you and your group must meet with me and/or Rebecca to discuss what you plan to do for your presentation. At that time, I will give you a specific schedule with your presentation time.

Change in next week's readings (as announced in class)

As I mentioned in class on Tuesday night, the readings for next week have changed slightly. I added a reading (to WebCT) by Astrid Henry and took out the reading (course packet) by Jenness.

So, for next Tuesday (4.28), read:
1. Chapkis (course packet)
2. Barton (WebCT)
3. Henry (WebCT)

We will begin class next week by watching an extended clip from Live Nude Girls Unite. If you do not wish to watch the film (due to its explicit content), you can do an alternative assignment. For this assignment, read the Jenness (from Making it Work) article in the course packet and write a 1 page discussion of COYOTE. If you choose this option, you can come to class at 7:20.

April 22, 2009

Small Group Discussion from 4/21/09

Breanne Durenberger, Jenna Belden, Rachel Margulis, Jessica Lynch

According to Lorde:

What is sex? Sex is mostly divided between the erotic and the pornographic. The erotic is considered sex involving feeling, emotion, connection, exploration, and a psychological aspect. The pornographic is considered sex lacking feeling (sensation without feeling), involving power and information, and missing the search and involving instant gratification.

Why is sex an issue for women? Sex is an issue for women because within Western history, sex is used to devalue, problematize, and vilify women.

How does Lorde think we should address this issue? Women need to explore and experience the eroticness of life. Women are only allowed to have pornographic sex, but we need to encourage women to have and be fulfilled by erotic sex.

What questions does this raise for you? Should porn be completely banned? What about feminist/queer friendly porn?

April 6, 2009

Works Cited Policy

Here is the official Works cited policy. This policy applies to the Family Values/Sex Wars position papers and your revised Feminism Paper. I am also placing a link to it under the assignment section of this blog.

March 27, 2009

Check out this great event on Saturday April 4...

Centro Campesino

~ fé ~ esperanza ~ unión ~ justicia ~

Estimada gente, friends of farmworkers, Chicano Studies and Centro

Every year, students in colleges and universities across the country take a lead in organizing with farmworker groups, organizations and unions, a Call to Action through the National Farmworker Awareness Week, which annually is held the week of March 31st-commemorating the birth of Cesar Chavez). The Department of Chicano Studies is proud to participate in this effort in large part through the spring class, Migrant Farmworkers: Family, Work and Advocacy taught by Lisa Sass Zaragoza. This year, students for their group project have organized an exciting multi-media and spoken word event at the Parkway Theater in south Minneapolis. Farmworkers and former farmworkers will have the mic-poetry, comedy and spoken word while the students are putting together a zine and slide show on farmworker issues. Come hear Eden Torres read some her poetry and Joe Minjares will do some of his famous stand-up, to name a few!

Continue reading "Check out this great event on Saturday April 4..." »

March 25, 2009

Law and Inequality Symposium

Here is a link to the Law and Inequality Symposium that Rebecca mentioned in class last night. It takes place at the Law School on April 10th (next Friday).

Here's a blurb about it:
The controversial case of Nadya Suleman, mother of fourteen children conceived with the help of ART; including only the second set of octuplets born in the United States; has captured the attention of mainstream media and ignited public debate. Called into question are the permissible uses of reproductive technology and the role of law in regulating or promoting reproductive choice. Over 50,000 children are born annually in the United States through the use of assisted reproductive technology (ART). The Suleman case captures only a fragment of the larger debates within the larger domain of ART. This symposium will attempt to unpack ART from the margins to its center. In particular, interrogating race, class, and sexuality.

*If you attend one of the panels, you can earn extra credit on your blog grade by posting an entry (200 words or so) describing the panel, key issues at stake and/or questions that the panel raised for you.

Continue reading "Law and Inequality Symposium" »

March 24, 2009

Check out the Web Vista site for our class

We have just added some content to the Web Vista site for our course. Some of the readings for the remainder of the semester and your grades are available now. Also, I just posted an article that I found written by Margaret Sanger's grandson. In this article he defends her against the charge that she was racist and that she promoted the eugenics agenda.

March 23, 2009

Revised Syllabus

Here is the revised syllabus. I will also distribute it in class tomorrow.

Peer Review Groups reminder

I originally posted a message about peer review papers on March 5. In case you missed it, here it is.

On March 31, you will spend some time in peer review groups discussing your feminism reflection papers. This week, you do not have to bring in copies of your original paper for your groups (as the syllabus states). Instead, I want you to do the following in preparation for your peer review group discussions on 3.31:

1. Type up your 1-2 sentence definition of feminism.
2. Think (and be prepared to talk) about how your definition is changing as you read/study/debate about feminism.
3. Type up a preliminary thesis statement for your revised paper and three brief sketches of arguments/examples that support that statement.

You do not have to prepare this for tomorrow's class. Instead, bring it in to class next Tuesday (3.31).

March 20, 2009

Some thoughts about the position papers...

I have enjoyed reading the position papers on reproductive rights and work that many of you have turned in. As you think about writing your second position paper (or, for some of you, your first paper), here are some general things to remember:

Continue reading "Some thoughts about the position papers..." »

March 10, 2009

Class cancelled for tonight (3.10)

Due to the bad weather expected for tonight, I have decided to cancel class. All presentations are postponed until the week after spring break (3.23). If you were planning to hand in a paper on the work section, please email it to me or drop it off at the main GWSS office by this Friday.

Please email me ( to let me know that you have received this message.

March 5, 2009

Peer Review Groups for March 24

On March 24, you will spend some time in peer review groups discussing your feminism reflection papers. Next week, you do not have to bring in copies of your original paper for your groups (as the syllabus states). Instead, I want you to do the following in preparation for your peer review group discussions the Tuesday after spring break:

1. Type up your 1-2 sentence definition of feminism.
2. Think (and be prepared to talk) about how your definition is changing as you read/study/debate about feminism.
3. Type up a preliminary thesis statement for your revised paper and three brief sketches of arguments/examples that support that statement.

This brief assignment is due on Tuesday, March 24. You are required to hand it in to Sara or Rebecca. Here is the Feminist Revision Paper Assignment. It is due on April 21.

February 16, 2009

Group 4 definitions

Birth Control: When is it a right? When is it a duty?
It is a right to have as many kids as you want; therefore, access to birth control should be a right because when you are done having children, you should be able to stop having kids when you want.
It is a duty to use birth control if economically, you can not support a child. It is a duty to live within your means. Also, one should use birth control if you know you are not able to raise a child and probably wont use a condom when engaging in sexual activities.

Positive Eugenics is a way to selectively reproduce by having the better members of society produce more (generally ended up being the white members of society)
Negative Eugenics is not allowed inferior people to not reproduce.

Carrie Buck and Buck vs. Bell
THe Supreme Court Case in which the treatment of mentally ill people was questioned. It as thought to be in violation of equal protection, the Supreme Court, however, decided it was in the governments interest to not treat mentally ill people equal. That decision was later overturned.

February 10, 2009

Your groups

Here is the group Sign-up sheet. Make sure that you exchange contact information with each other and start planning for your presentation.

Please email me (or stop by my office hours) if you need some suggestions on sources for your topic.

February 9, 2009

Position Paper

Here is the assignment for your required position papers.

We will discuss them at the end of class tomorrow night.

February 5, 2009

Some more handouts from class on 2.2

Here are the Feminist Debate handout and the Group Presentation handout that I distributed in class this past Tuesday.

Revised Blog Assignment

Here is a detailed description of the revised Blog Assignment that we discussed in class on Tuesday night.

You are still required to do 10 blog posts.
5 of those should be new entries that respond to the question that Sara or Rebecca post.
5 of those should be comments that respond to another class member's post.

January 30, 2009

Course Packets are in!

The course packet for the class is available at Paradigm Copies. They are located in the Dinkydome on University Avenue (1501 University Avenue SE, Suite 201). The dinkydome is right across the street from Folwell Hall.

Have a great weekend!

January 28, 2009

Feminist Reflection Paper Assignment

Here is the assignment for your first paper.

New Reading Assignment for 2/3

Here is the new reading assignment that I announced last night in class.

Continue reading "New Reading Assignment for 2/3" »

January 27, 2009

How to Blog

1. Go to U Think.
2. Click on Login to UThink
3. Put in your user id (ex: puot0002)and password
4. You are now on the moveable type page. You should find a link to our class. Click on GWSS 3004 (not the URL but the other link). If you do not have a link to our class, please email me and I will add you as an author.
5. Click on new entry (it is on the top right hand side under posting).
6. Type in your entry. Scroll down to the bottom and hit save. You're done!

January 22, 2009

Textbook available

The book for next week, "Feminism is for Everybody" is in stock at the bookstore as of this morning. If you haven't purchased it yet, make sure you get it soon.

January 20, 2009

Welcome to the class blog!

Welcome to the blog for GWSS 3004: Contemporary Feminist Debates. Here is a copy of the syllabus.