E 389P • Women in Literature and Popular Culture
2:00 PM-3:30 PM
In this course, we will examine the ways in which women are portrayed in literature and popular culture to address such issues as femininity as a construction, feminism, female beauty, and representation. We will begin by defining "popular culture" and by relying on Marxist and cultural criticism to define literature's relationship to these popular forms. Once a working definition is established, we will then explore women's roles in it, especially those roles as subject, object, and theorist. Issues of race, class, sexual orientation, age, and physical ability will also fall within the scope of our analysis and will be considered through the lens of cultural theory. Throughout the semester, students will be required to bring in examples of issues related directly to the readings.
Alexie, Sherman. Reservation Blues.
Brumberg, Joan Jacobs. The Body Project: An Intimate History of American Girls.
Guerilla Girls. Bitches, Bimbos, and Ballbreakers: The Guerilla Girls' Illustrated Guide to Female Stereotypes.
Freedman, Estelle. No Turning Back: The History of Feminism and the Future of Women.
Morrison, Toni. The Bluest Eye.
Strinati, Dominic. An Introduction to Theories of Popular Culture.
White, Emily. Fast Girls: Teenage Tribes and the Myth of the Slut.
Supplemental reading packet available from Jen's Copies