WGST-248-01 Gender and Global Laws: Oppression and Liberation
Fall for 2010-2011
Gender and Global Laws: Oppression and Liberation uses the title concept of Audre Lorde’s essay, “The Master’s Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master’s House,” to examine and analyze the power of societies and individuals to wield the law both as a tool of gender-based oppression and as a tool of liberation. In doing so, it considers a series of gender-related issues in three parts: 1) the historical use of the law to create and maintain key institutions of gender-based oppression in society; 2) the efforts of activists, lawyers, and legal scholars to use the law to gain equal access to/equal treatment by such institutions, to dismantle those institutions, and/or to create new institutions; and 3) the effectiveness of legal tools in counteracting and changing the original character of legal institutions designed to implement and perpetuate gender-based oppression. Using U.S., non-U.S., and international legal sources, the course examines such topics as marriage, gendered violence, employment, prostitution and trafficking, and reproductive rights and asks the ultimate question - whether the “Master’s Tools” (the law) can dismantle the “Master’s House” (a society built on gender-based oppression).
Women and the Law is a recommended, but not required, prerequisite to this course.
Other academic years
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