WGST311 / SOC311
Seminar: Families, Gender, the State, and Social Policies

This course examines the politics facing contemporary U.S. families and potential policy directions at the State and Federal Levels. Discussion of the transformation of American families including changing economic and social expectations for parents, inequality between spouses, choices women make about children and employment, daycare and familial care giving, welfare and underemployment, and new American dreams will be explored. Changing policies regarding welfare and teen pregnancy will also be examined as part of government incentives to promote self-sufficient families. Expanding family (i.e. single mothers by choice, lesbian/gay/trans families) through the use of new reproductive technologies is emphasized as examples of legislative reform and the confusion surrounding genetic and social kinship is explored. Comparisons to other contemporary societies will serve as foils for particular analyses. Students will learn several types of research methodologies through course assignments. Student groups will also produce an original social policy case.

Units: 1

Max Enrollment: 15

Crosslisted Courses:

Prerequisites: One 100 level and one 200 level course in either WGST or Sociology. Open to Juniors and Seniors; to Sophomores by permission of the instructor.

Instructor: Hertz

Distribution Requirements: SBA - Social and Behavioral Analysis

Semesters Offered this Academic Year: Not Offered