VAST 256

Body Politics

Instructor:  Susan Basow

Office:  315 Oechsle

Office Phone:  330-5294


This course may be used as an elective for the Women's Studies minor.

Course Description:  This interdisciplinary course provides a critical evaluation of the political nature of body ideals and the significance of the body in scientific thought and feminist theory. We will examine how science, technology social norms and values shape our perceptions of sexual and racial differences. The view of women as "bodies" (relative to "minds") will be explored, as will attempts to control the female body through appearance norms, sexual norms, and reproductive codes. We will debate whether and how change can be fostered through notions of performativity, subversions, and resistance, including the use of science and technology to achieve those ends.