Women's & Gender Studies
Women's and Gender Studies (WGS) is an interdisciplinary department for students wanting to explore the intersections of gender, race, ethnicity, sexuality, class and other axes of power. We investigate how these concepts have shaped the individual as well as social, cultural and political organization both historically and in our contemporary world. Drawing on a range of disciplines including history, literature, anthropology, political science, biology, sociology, religion, communications/media studies, and global health, students have the opportunity to learn in a truly intersectional and interdisciplinary environment. Research and theory emerge from our study of women’s and men’s everyday realities, and feminist theory, in turn, informs our analysis of political choices.
All WGS majors and minors are required to take a WGS research methods course (WGS 201), a unique opportunity often only included in graduate WGS curricula. In that course, students will learn how to design and carry out a gender based research project of their choosing; learning and honing qualitative research skills. The WGS program offers students the opportunity to learn from ourselves, the societies we live in, and the world beyond our borders.
A short selection of the WGS faculty’s areas of research includes: women’s autobiography and women’s literature, anti-sex trafficking advocacy, gender roles and religion, critical animal studies, women’s human rights activism in East Africa, gender and international development, Tanzanian anti-witchcraft practices and health, and the intersections of race, gender and the media.
Mercer students graduating with WGS majors have embarked on remarkable opportunities and careers ranging from Capital Hill, the ACLU, Fulbright Scholars, Teach for America, and Peace Corps Volunteers. Many have continued their education in graduate, law, and medical schools.
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