2015-2016

THE POLITICS OF GENDER EQUALITY

(23621)

 

Titulació/estudi: Grau en Ciències Polítiques i de l'Administració

Curs: 3rd/4th

Trimestre: 2nd

Nombre de crèdits ECTS: 4 credits

Hores dedicació estudiant: 100 hours

Llengua o llengües de la docència: English

Professora: Tània Verge ([email protected])

 

 

1. Presentació de l'assignatura / Course description

 

This course critically examines how gender operates in politics and public policy. It aims at identifying the "politics" of public policy and, more specifically, to show the gender politics of public policy. The course will apply the concept of "gender" as an analytical social category to disentangle how and why politics and policies often have a different impact on women, men and other social groups, and to discuss how public action can contribute to advancing gender equality. Through lectures and seminars the course addresses the following questions: How can public action reinforce or fight gender inequality? How does gender inequality intersect with other axes of inequality such as social class, sexual orientation or ethnicity? What are the implications of women's exclusion from policy making? When and why do governments promote equality? In order to answer these questions the course will examine both national and international policies and it will provide an introduction to feminist epistemology and methodology as well as a review of feminist perspectives on politics and the State.

This course is complementary to the elective course Gender and Family, which analyzes the relationship between family, gender and social policy from a sociological perspective. The two courses provide a good understanding on how public action can shape gender equality within the family as well as in the social, political and economic spheres.

 

2. Competències / Skills

 

General

Specific

  • Capacity for critical thinking and self-criticism.
  • To be able to analyse critically gender inequality and its intersection with other axes of inequality.
  • Design and management of projects.
  • To be able to mainstream gender in public policy.
  • Capacity to process information from various sources.
  • To know the structure and functioning of political institutions.
  • Capacity for analysis and synthesis.
  • To know the bases of equality policies, their institutions and actors.
  • Communication and writing skills.

 


3. Continguts / Course outline

1. INTRODUCTION: GENDER AND POLITICS

-        The gender politics of political science.

-        The gender of politics.

-        Feminist concepts: gender, patriarchy and power.

-        Feminist epistemologies and methods to the study of politics and policy.

2. FEMINIST VINDICATION FOR EQUALITY

-        Early feminists: education.

-        Liberal, socialist and anarchist feminism: votes, bread and roses.

-        Third-wave feminism: "the personal is political".

-        Current feminisms

3. FEMINIST PERSPECTIVES ON POLITICS AND THE STATE

-        The "sexual contract": the public/private divide.

-        The double bind of gender and class.

-        The patriarchal welfare state.

-        Recognition and redistribution (difference and equality).

 

4. THE POLITICS OF PRESENCE: WHO MAKES POLITICS AND POLICY?

-        Barriers to women's political participation.

-        The descriptive, substantive and symbolic dimensions of political representation.

-        Gender (electoral) quotas.

-        The "gender regimes" of institutions.

5. ANALYTICAL TOOLS FOR EQUALITY POLICY

-        Equal opportunity and positive action.

-        Gender mainstreaming: factoring gender in public policy.

-        Intersectionality: understanding social inequalities by race, gender, class, and sexuality.

-        Critical frame analysis of gender policies.

6. THE INSTITUTIONALIZATION OF EQUALITY POLICY

-        Women's policy offices and state feminism.

-        The impact of the territorial structure of the state on equality policies.

-        The local-global organization of the feminist movement.

-        The role of international organizations in shaping equality policies.

7. EQUALITY POLICY, ECONOMIC CRISES AND AUSTERITY

-        Gender equality and development.

-        The gendered effects of global economic inequalities.

-        The politics of gender and economic crises.

-        The gender of the Troika: Gendered austerity.

 


4. Metodologia del curs i avaluació / Methodology and evaluation

 

The methodology followed in the course seeks to develop students' critical thinking. Lectures will include a section dedicated to discussion of the course topics based on selected readings.

 

Continuous evaluation

 

1. Class participation (15%)

The success of a course builds on the degree and quality of students' participation. You must come to class having done the assigned readings and having reflected on them in order to stimulate discussion and critical thinking.

 

2. Discussion of readings (20%)

Each student will select two weeks during the term (from week 2 until 9) to prepare a critical review of the readings assigned that week of 5-6 pages length. A review is not a summary. Although every single reading may not address the following questions, when writing the review students should pay attention to these criteria:

 

·       Problem definition: What is the central question/problem addressed by the readings? How is the problem defined? (Note agreements and disagreements among the different authors).

·       Analysis: What are causes of the problem? Who benefits from the status quo? Does intersectionality play any role?

·       Perspectives and strategies: What are the short-term and the long-term visions for change? What strategies of change (either gradual or radical) are proposed? What policy recommendations are advanced?

·       Opinion: Articulate your own position: What arguments/perspectives/ strategies do you find most persuasive, and why?

 

3. Seminars (30%)

Continuous evaluation also includes the preparation of group activities for seminar sessions. Attendance at seminars is compulsory.

 

Final exam

The final exam makes for 35% of the course mark.

 

Students failing the continuous evaluation of the course will be required to hand a review essay based on seminar activities and readings. Those who fail the exam will be required to take another exam. Only those having attended and handed (at least) most of the assignments and having taken the exam will be able to retest the course.

 

Course Policies

To help achieve active learning and foster a positive classroom environment please take note of the following policies:

  • Missing sessions might negatively affect your ability to answer the exam questions.
  • If you are absent or late to class, you are responsible for the handouts, handouts, and notes from the portion or session you missed.
  • Late assignments and email submissions will not be accepted.
  • Plagiarism: Regardless of whether or not it was committed intentionally, plagiarism has serious academic consequences and can result in disciplinary action at the university level. Plagiarism involves the improper use of somebody else's words or ideas in one's work.

 

  

5. Programació d'activitats / Course schedule

  

Week

In-class activities

Out-of-class activities

In-class hours

Out-of-class hours

1

Lecture

Read assigned texts

3

4

2

Lecture

Read assigned texts

3

6

3

Lecture

Read assigned texts

3

6

4

Lecture

Read assigned texts, prepare seminars

3

6

5

Seminar 1

Read assigned texts, prepare seminars

3

8

6

Lecture

Read assigned texts, prepare seminars

3

5

7

Seminar 2

Read assigned texts, prepare seminars

3

8

8

Lecture

Read assigned texts, prepare seminars

3

5

9

Seminar 3

Read assigned texts, prepare seminars

3

8

10

Lecture

Read assigned texts

3

4

Hours

30

60

Study hours for final exam

10

Total hours

100

  

  

6. Bibliografia bàsica /Basic references

Alonso, Alba & Marta Lois. 2014. Ciencia Política con Perspectiva de Género. Madrid: Akal.

Banaszak, Lee Ann, Beckwith, Karen & Rucht Dieter. 2003. Women's Movements Facing the Reconfigured State. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Bustelo, María. 2004. La evaluación de las políticas de género en España. Madrid. La Catarata.

Bustelo, María & Emanuela Lombardo (eds). 2007. Políticas de igualdad en España y en Europa. Madrid: Cátedra.

Castells, Carmen (comp.). 1996. Perspectivas Feministas en Teoría Política. Barcelona: Paidós, pp 31-52.

Henderson, Sarah L. & Alana S. Jeydel. 2009. Women and Politics in a Global World. (2nd Edition). New York: Oxford University Press.

Hooks, Bell. 2000. Feminism is for Everybody. Brooklyn: South End Press.

Johnson, Cathy Marie, Georgia Duest-Lahti & Noelle H. Norton. 2007. Creating Gender: The Sexual Politics of Welfare Policy. Boulde: Lynne Reinner Publishers, pp.

Karamessini, Maria &  Jill Rubery (eds). 2014. Women and Austerity: The Economic Crisis and the Future for Gender Equality. London & New York: Routledge IAFFE Advances in Feminist Economics.

Mahon, Rianne & Fiona Robinson. 2011. Feminist Ethics and Social Policy: Toward a New Global Political Economy of Care, Vancouver: UBC Press.

Mazur, Amy G. 2002. Theorizing Feminist Policy. New York: Oxford University Press.

McBride Stetson, Dorothy M. & Amy G. Mazur, 1995. Comparative State Feminism. Thousand Oaks: Sage.

Minas, Anne (ed.). 2000. Gender Basics: Feminist Perspectives on Women and Men. Second Edition. Belmont: Wadsworth Press.

Newman, Jacquetta & Linda White. 2012 (2nd edition). Women, Politics, and Public Policy. Don Mills: Oxford University Press.

Ortega, Margarita, Cristina Sánchez & Celia Valiente (eds.). 2000. Género y Ciudadanía. Revisiones desde el ámbito privado. Madrid: Ediciones de la Universidad Autónoma de Madrid.

Waylen, Georgina, Karen Celis, Johanna Kantola & S. Laurel Weldon. 2013. The Oxford Handbook of Gender and Politics. New York: Oxford University Press.