Dr. Ron Eglash

WS 494: Feminist Approaches to Science and Technology

Student-created web site (click here)

Course Syllabus

This course brings feminist analysis to bear on the theory, practice and social impact of contemporary science and technology. Far from debunking science; our goal is to find out how the social categories of sex and gender interact with science and technology. What kinds of challenges confront women in science? What is the role of science in producing or contesting western categories of gender? How do the knowledge systems of indigenous women compare or contrast with western science? How will the spread of new information technologies affect gender and sexuality in the material worlds of today, and the virtual worlds of tomorrow?

Evaluation will be based on the two midterms (80%), class participation (5%), and your contribution to the course webpage (15%). It is important to bring the reading to class so that we can discuss the texts in detail.

Sandra Harding, Whose Science? Whose Knowledge?
Bonnie Spanier, Impartial Science
Vandana Shiva, Biopiracy
Sherry Turkle, Life on the Screen
*Reader (Grade A Notes)

Introduction to feminist science studies

March 31 -- Harding ch 1-3

April 2 -- video, "Eve of Destruction."

April 7 -- Harding ch 4-6

Intro to race, class and sexuality in feminist science studies

April 9 -- Harding ch 7-9

April 14 -- Harding ch 10-12

Gender ideology in molecular biology

April 16 -- Spanier ch 1-3

April 21 -- Spanier ch 4-5

Myths of biological determinism

April 23 -- Spanier 6-7

April 28 -- Spanier 8-Conclusion

April 30 -- Midterm exam

Ecofeminism and indigenous knowledge systems

May 5 -- Shiva intro-ch 2

May 7 -- Shiva ch 3-4

May 12 -- Shiva ch 4-7

Feminist scientists

May 14 -- *Sophia Kovaleskaya

May 19 -- *Patricia Cowing

Week 8) Gender and computing

May 21 -- Turkle parts I

May 26 -- Turkle part II

Week 9) Cyberspace

May 28 -- Field trip to computing lab

June 2 -- Turkle part III

Week 10 Conclusion

June 4 -- Reader: Donna Haraway, Student webpage presentations