Gender Issues in North America and the Hispanic World: Cross-Cultural Perspectives

Universidad de Málaga

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Gender Issues in North America and the Hispanic World: Cross-Cultural Perspectives

  • Host University

    Universidad de Málaga

  • Location

    Málaga, Spain

  • Area of Study

    Anthropology, Multicultural Studies

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

    Hours & Credits

  • Contact Hours

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview

    Course Description

    This course traces the evolution of discourses of gender relations in North and Latin America beginning from their origins in Europe. Attention will be given to the various cultural and political factors that help us account for divergent approaches to the question of gender between Hispanic and Anglo Saxon societies. We will cover, among other topics: gender stereotypes; the struggle between the sexes; gender roles; the family structure; generational differences; and issues of power, often related to race and ethnicity. The representation of gender from a socioanthropological perspective will be woven throughout the course, without losing sight of other psychological and historical modes of theorizing gender, thus providing the student with an ample set of theoretical resources with which to approach the various examples used in class.


    1. Defining ?Gender? in the 20th and 21st century: From Psychoanalysis and Sex role theory to Social Theory of Gender.

    1.1. Psychoanalysis: Freud´s Three Essays and Jacques Lacan´s reinterpretation

    1.2. Sex role theory, the Economy of Being: Michel Foucault

    1.3. Social Theory based on Anthropology, History and Sociology

    2. Responding to Gender Issues: Feminism, Masculinism and Gender Studies

    2.1. "Feminism" as a movement, socio-historical realities and responses

    --The push behind feminist movements

    --Issues addressed by feminism

    --Distinct realities and intersecting variables: North America versus Latin America (general information)

    2.2. Speaking Out: Some Feminist Voices of the 20th/21st century

    --Woman as mother and gender dynamics and hisotry (Nancy Chodorow)

    --Gendered latina identities (Debra Castillo)

    --Gynocriticism, woman as writer (Elaine Showalter)

    2.3. Masculinism

    --Masculinity and power (Arthur Brittan)

    --Masculinities and identities (David Buchbinder; R.W. Connell)

    2.4. Gender Studies

    --Other gendered possibilities and the evolution of being (Judith Butler)

    --Gender discourse: changing the historical perspective

    3. Religion, family and gendered identity: past and present

    3.1. Religion in North America and gendered being

    --Protestantism and its effects on gendered identity and familial reality

    Westerkamp, M.J. 1999. Wives and Mothers in the colonial New England landscape. Women and Religion in Early America 1600-1850: The Puritan and Evangelical Traditions, pp. 11-35. US: Routledge.

    --Religion, family and gender in modern day North America

    3.2. Religion in Latin America and gendered being

    --Colonial Catholicism and its effects on gendered identity and familial reality

    Guzmán Stein, L. 2001. The Politics of Implementing Women's Rights in Catholic Countries of Latin America. In Bayes, J.H. & Tohidi, N. (Eds.) Globalization, gender, and Religion: the politics of implementing women's rights in Catholic and Muslim contexts, pp. 127-147. US: Palgrave.

    --Feminist theology of liberation in the 20th century

    4. Women´s Mobilization, Freedom and Democratization: Gendered (Readings of) Political Discourse

    4.1. Suffrage and women´s liberal movement in North America

    4.2. Nation Building: Latin American Independence (For All?)

    5. Race, Ethnicity, Class and Wo/Manhood: Intersecting Variables and the Question of Power

    5.1. African American Males and "Manhood"

    5.2. Claiming Her Voice: African American Women and the Civil Rights/Black Power Movement

    5.3. Indigenous Voices of Latin America

    --Testimonial literature in Latin America (Rigoberta Menchú)

    6. Transgressing Spacial Boundaries: Women, Work and Development

    7. Gendered meanings in the Media

    7.1. Contemporary gender stereotypes in North America: Film and media impact.

    Ouellete, L. 2003. Inventing the Cosmo Girl: Class Identity and Girl-Style American Dreams. In Dines, G. & Humez, J.M.(Eds.) Gender, Race, and Class in Media: a text-reader, pp. 116-129. US: Sage Publications.

    7.2. Contemporary gender stereotypes in Latin America: Film and media impact.

    Rodriguez, C.E. 1997. Latinos on Television and in the News: Absent or Misinterpreted. In Rodriguez, C.E.(Ed.). 1997. Latino Looks: Images of Latinas and Latinos in the U.S. Media, pp. 13-21. US: Westview Press.

    8. Changing Gendered Realities: the Impact of Modernization, Neoliberalism and Globalization on Bodily Significance

    9. The Future of Gendered Relations


    Bayard de Volo, Lorraine. 2001. Mothers of Heroes and Martyrs: Gender Identity Politics in Nicaragua, 1979-1999. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press.

    Brittan, Arthur. Masculinity and Power. Great Britain: TJ Press, 1989.

    Buchbinder, David. Masculinities and Identities. London: Melbourne Univerisity, 1994.

    Butler, Judith. Bodies that Matter. London: Routledge, 1993.

    ---Gender Trouble. London: Routledge, 1990.

    Chant, Sylvia and Nikki Craske. 2003. Gender in Latin America. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press.

    Connell, R. W. Masculinities. Berkey: U of California, 1995.

    Craske, Nikki. Women and Politics in Latin America. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 1999.

    Gutterman, David S. ?Postmodernism and the Interrogation of Masculinity.? Theorizing Masculinities. Harry Brod and Michael Kaufman, eds. Thousand Oaks: Sage, 1994. 219-238.

    Gutmann, Matthew C. (ed.). 2003. Changing Men and Masculinities in Latin America. Durham, NC: Duke University Press

    Hearn, Jeff and Collinson, David L. ?Theorizing Unities and Differences Between Men and Between Masculinities.? Theorizing Masculinities. Harry Brod and Michael Kaufman, eds. Thousand Oaks: Sage, 1994.

    Hondagneu-Sotelo, Pierrette. 2001. Doméstica: Immigrant Workers Cleaning and Caring in the Shadows of Affluence. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press.

    Lacan, Jacques. ?The mirror stage as formative of the function of the I as revealed in psychoanalytic experience? 1949. Écrits: A Selection. Trans. Alan Sheridan. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 1977. 1-7.

    Menchú, Rigoberta. 1992. I, Rigoberta Menchú: An Indian Woman in Guatemala. Elisabeth Burgos-Debray, ed. London: Verso.

    Minsky, Rosalind. Psychoanalysis and Gender. London: Routledge, 1996.

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