Spring 2021

Women, Gender and Popular Culture

Listed in: Film and Media Studies, as FAMS-377  |  Sexuality, Women's and Gender Studies, as SWAG-105

Formerly listed as: SWAG-08


Aneeka A. Henderson (Section 01)


(Offered as SWAG 105 and FAMS 377) In this course, students will interrogate the precarious relationship between political and popular culture. As we study how politics has successfully deployed popular culture as an ideological tool, we will also consider how politics has overburdened popular culture as a vehicle of change. These broad issues will serve as our framework for analyzing black femininity, womanhood, and the efficacy of the word “feminism” in the post-Civil Rights era. We will think critically about the construction of gender, race, sexuality, and class identity as well as the historical and sociopolitical context for cultural icons and phenomena. Students will read cultural theory, essays, fiction as well as listen to, and watch various forms of media. Expectations include three writing/visual projects as well as a group presentation.

All class meetings will occur remotely and consist of lecture and small group discussions throughout the semester.

This course fulfills a requirement for the Five College Reproductive Health, Rights and Justice (RHRJ) certificate.

Limited to 18 students. Spring semester. Professor Henderson.

If Overenrolled: Priority goes to students who are registered and attend the first day of class.


Attention to Issues of Class, Attention to Issues of Gender and Sexuality, Attention to Issues of Race, Attention to Speaking, Attention to Writing, Online Only


2021-22: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2012, Spring 2015, Spring 2016, Spring 2017, Fall 2019, Spring 2021