Women's and Gender Studies

women's studies collage

The MIT Program in Women's and Gender Studies is an interdisciplinary undergraduate program, providing an academic framework and broad-based community for scholarly inquiry focusing on women, gender, and sexuality.

Exploring gender with the tools of different, and often multiple, disciplines, Women's and Gender Studies subjects strive to help MIT students better understand how knowledge and value take different forms depending on a variety of social variables. In the course of their inquiry, students not only learn how to use gender as a category of analysis, but also reflect on the manifestation of gender in their own lives, leading to a range of personal and intellectual discoveries. Although gender is a central component of every subject, the study of gender requires attention to connections between gender, sexuality, race, class, religion, nationality, and other social categories; different subjects shed light on different aspects of such connections.

The Program is also an important resource for faculty with an advanced knowledge of gender studies within particular disciplines who are interested in learning more across disciplinary lines; it also welcomes faculty who have an emerging interest in the field of Women's Studies.

The Program in Women's and Gender Studies offers an undergraduate curriculum consisting of core classes and cross-listed subjects from several departments. Students may concentrate, minor, and petition for a major departure in WS. There are more than 30 faculty members who are affiliated with the Program from fields as diverse as architecture, history, comparative media studies, brain and cognitive sciences, literature, and political science, for example. The Program in Women's and Gender Studies offered 22 subjects during the academic year 2002-2003, with approximately 300 students enrolled.

Program in Women's and Gender Studies links

Visit the MIT Program in Women's and Gender Studies home page at:


 MIT Course #Course TitleTerm
 WMN.401Introduction to Women's and Gender StudiesSpring 2005
 WMN.406Sexual and Gender IdentitiesFall 2006
 WMN.412JFeminist Political ThoughtFall 2000
 WMN.430Literary Interpretation: Virginia Woolf's ShakespeareSpring 2001
 WMN.454JIdentity and DifferenceFall 2002
WMN.454JIdentity and DifferenceSpring 2007
 WMN.455JGender, Sexuality, and SocietySpring 2006
 WMN.456JThe Contemporary American FamilySpring 2004
 WMN.457JGender, Power, and International DevelopmentFall 2003
WMN.459JWomen in South Asia from 1800 to PresentFall 2006
 WMN.461JInternational Women's VoicesSpring 2004
 WMN.472Traditions in American Concert Dance: Gender and AutobiographySpring 2003
 WMN.484JThe Anthropology of ComputingFall 2004
 WMN.492Popular Narrative: MastermindsFall 2004
 WMN.512Major Authors: After the Masterpiece: Novels by Melville, Twain, Faulkner, and MorrisonFall 2006
 WMN.512Major Authors: Melville and MorrisonFall 2003
 WMN.514Medieval Literature: Medieval Women WritersSpring 2004
 WMN.517American Authors: American Women AuthorsSpring 2003
WMN.518JRace and Identity in American Literature: Keepin' it Real FakeSpring 2007
 WMN.575JWriting About RaceSpring 2003
 WMN.576JAdvanced Essay WorkshopSpring 2005
 WMN.601JFeminist Political ThoughtSpring 2006
 WMN.607JGender and the Law in U.S. HistorySpring 2004
 WMN.608JCultural Performances of AsiaFall 2005
 WMN.610JThe Economic History of Work and FamilySpring 2005
 WMN.620JMedicine, Religion and Politics in Africa and the African DiasporaSpring 2005
 WMN.621JViolence, Human Rights, and JusticeFall 2004
 WMN.622JDilemmas in Bio-Medical Ethics: Playing God or Doing Good?Spring 2005
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