WGSS 250
Gender, Sexuality and Modern Performance Fall 2016
Division II Writing Skills Exploring Diversity Initiative
Cross-listed THEA 250 / ENGL 253 / WGSS 250 / COMP 247
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This interdisciplinary tutorial explores aspects of gender, sexuality, performativity, race, class, and representations of the body in modern theatre and performance in America. While attention will be given to the still understudied role of women in the arts, we will focus primarily on the transsecionalities of social identities under interrelated systems of oppression. Close analysis of works by dramatists–such as Adrienne Kennedy, Caryl Churchill, Wendy Wasserstein, Ntozake Shange, Tony Kushner, Naomi Iizuka, Paula Vogel, Suzan-Lori Parks, David Henry Hwang, Tarell McCraney, Gina Gionfriddo, and Taylor Mac–will occur alongside consideration of works by artists such as Karen Finley, Ron Athey, Tim Miller, E. Patrick Johnson, and Young Jean Lee. Our approach to this varied material will be comparative and will be enriched by readings of critical works by writers such as: Judith Butler, bell hooks, Cherríe Moraga, Gloria Anzaldúa, Eve K. Sedgwick, Jill Dolan, José Esteban Muñoz, David Román, and Donna Haraway. This course meets the criteria of the Exploring Diversity Initiative as it draws focus towards the diversity of race, class and ethnicity represented by the subjects of our study as well as towards the political power of theatre and performance.
The Class: Format: tutorial
Limit: 10
Expected: 10
Class#: 1879
Grading: no pass/fail option, no fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: students will meet with instructor in pairs for an hour each week; they will write a 5- to 7-page paper every other week (five in all), and comment on their partner's papers in alternate weeks
Extra Info: emphasis will be placed on developing skills in reading, interpretation, critical argumentation, and critical written and oral response
Extra Info 2: may not be taken on a pass/fail basis; not available for the fifth course option
Prerequisites: none
Enrollment Preferences: sophomores and above; majors in Theatre, English or Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies
Distributions: Division II Writing Skills Exploring Diversity Initiative
Notes: meets Division 1 requirement if registration is under THEA, COMP or ENGL; meets Division 2 requirement if registration is under WGSS
This course is cross-listed and the prefixes carry the following divisional credit:
THEA 250 Division I ENGL 253 Division I WGSS 250 Division I COMP 247 Division I
Attributes: AMST Arts in Context Electives
PERF Interdepartmental Electives
WGSS Theory Courses

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