Spring 2016 - SA 335 E100

Gender Relations and Social Issues (S) (4)

Class Number: 1985

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Jan 5 – Apr 11, 2016: Wed, 5:30–9:20 p.m.

  • Instructor:

    Jennifer Thomas
  • Prerequisites:

    SA 101 or 150 or 201W.



A sociological study of the position of women and men in major social institutions in western industrial societies, in particular Canada. Social institutions that may be examined include: the family, education, the economy, the polity, law, and the mass media. Particular attention will be paid to social policy issues. Students with credit for SA 292 (when offered as gender relations) or GSWS 308 (or WS 308) may not take SA 335 for further credit.


Feminist scholars have claimed that the personal experience of gender is not just a private, individual phenomenon, but rather it is situated, produced and reproduced within a broader social landscape. In what ways does gender organize our social relations and enable and constrain certain life possibilities? How does gender intersect with other axes of power such as race, class, sexuality, and immigration status? This seminar will challenge students to critically examine their assumptions about gender and its intersections by connecting the personal with the political and the individual with the structural. Course readings, video clips, current affairs, social policy and our own situated knowledges will render visible the ways in which social institutions inform various dimensions of social life. Students will examine the organization and meaning of gender in a number of institutional contexts such as labour, family, health and the state by drawing from several theoretical traditions. Feminist, queer, trans, masculinities, and critical race scholarship form the prominent bodies of literature covered in this class. This course will pay particular attention to social policy within the Canadian context.


  • Attendance and Active Participation 20%
  • Activity/Discussion Leaders 10%
  • Reflexive Paper 10%
  • Collaborative Tests (2 x 10%) 20%
  • Take-Home Midterm Exam 20%
  • Policy Analysis Paper Draft 10%
  • Policy Analysis Paper Final 10%


Where a final exam is scheduled and you do not write the exam or withdraw from the course before the deadline date, you will be assigned an N grade. Unless otherwise specified on the course outline, all other graded assignments in this course must be completed for a final grade other than N to be assigned.

Academic Dishonesty and Misconduct Policy
The Department of Sociology and Anthropology follows SFU policy in relation to grading practices, grade appeals (Policy T 20.01) and academic dishonesty and misconduct procedures (S10.01‐ S10.04). Unless otherwise informed by your instructor in writing, in graded written assignments you must cite the sources you rely on and include a bibliography/list of references, following an instructor-approved citation style. It is the responsibility of students to inform themselves of the content of SFU policies available on the SFU website: http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student.html.



Required course materials (articles and book chapters) will be available for download or direct reading through the SFU library reserves: http://troy.lib.sfu.ca/search/r


Additional readings can be found through the SFU library.

Registrar Notes:

SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://students.sfu.ca/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