Spring 2021 - GSWS 204 D100

Sex and the City (3)

Class Number: 7052

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    We 11:30 AM – 12:20 PM

    Fr 10:30 AM – 12:20 PM



Selected topics on the sexual politics of urban space. May be organized by region, critical approach, or genre. Students who have completed WS 204 may not complete this course for further credit.


Cities are dynamic entities; myriad social forces and processes inform their design and development. Sexual and gender politics are among the most significant -and least discussed- of these forces. Sexual and gender politics underlie urban form and function. Yet, cities are often imagined to serve a universal user.

In this course, we unpack these ideas and their relevance to our everyday lives. We ask: What are the explicit and implicit ways that forms of sexuality (as well as sex acts and gender expression) are promoted or policed? Whose bodies - and which practices - are managed? How and where do these forms of management take place? How do cities take sexual and gender politics seriously already, and how can cities improve their policies and services?

Taking an intersectional approach to the relationship between cities and the intimate lives of their residents, the course examines various aspects of the urban form, including but not limited to: the built environment, social relations, laws and policies, and cultural landscapes.


For more detailed information please see the GSWS website: http://www.sfu.ca/gsws/undergraduate/courses/Educational_Goals.html


  • Participation in tutorials & asynchronous activities 20%
  • Annotated mental map 30%
  • Media review 20%
  • Peer review (10% x3) 30%


The majority of this course (lecture materials, discussion boards, etc.) will be delivered in an asynchronous format using Canvas as well as hypothes.is and other open source online platforms. However, students will be expected to participate in a small group tutorial (synchronous) nine times over the term: once weekly for the first half of the term and once bi-weekly for the second half. Timing of the synchronous session will occur during the scheduled course time (Fridays, 10:30-12:20); students will be assigned to a 45-minute tutorial slot prior to the first class.

We will use primarily Canvas (Blackboard Collaborate) and Zoom as a back-up. Access to internet and a computer with camera and microphone will be required.



There is one required text: Leslie Kern, 2019, Feminist City: A Field Guide. Between the Lines Press.

Various content (journal articles, videos, podcasts, etc.) available on Canvas and/or via SFU library databases

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html


Teaching at SFU in spring 2021 will be conducted primarily through remote methods. There will be in-person course components in a few exceptional cases where this is fundamental to the educational goals of the course. Such course components will be clearly identified at registration, as will course components that will be “live” (synchronous) vs. at your own pace (asynchronous). Enrollment acknowledges that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes. To ensure you can access all course materials, we recommend you have access to a computer with a microphone and camera, and the internet. In some cases your instructor may use Zoom or other means requiring a camera and microphone to invigilate exams. If proctoring software will be used, this will be confirmed in the first week of class.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who believe they may need class or exam accommodations, including in the current context of remote learning, are encouraged to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112).