Spring 2023 - GSWS 320 D100

Special Topics in Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies (4)

Genealogies Resist: Queer, Fmnist & Trans Arch

Class Number: 2906

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Jan 4 – Apr 11, 2023: Tue, Thu, 10:30 a.m.–12:20 p.m.

  • Prerequisites:

    15 units.



A specific theme within the field of gender, sexuality, and women's studies, not otherwise covered in depth in regularly scheduled courses, will be dealt with as occasion and demand warrant.


In “A Genealogy of Resistance,” Black Trinidadian Canadian writer NourbeSe Philip traces her family history, reflecting on the ancestors from whom she has inherited complex legacies of violence, strength, and transgressive knowledge. Thanks to the workings of enslavement, colonialism, and heteropatriarchy, this is a genealogy that is riddled with silences and gaps. At the same time, it fuels Philip in her struggles to thrive in a hostile world as a cis Black woman. In this course, we will examine the efforts of Indigenous, Black, Asian, and other racialized thinkers to assemble “genealogies of resistance” by investigating and documenting queer, trans, and/or feminist pasts. Why and how do QTBIPOC seek knowledge about QTBIPOC pasts? Where and by whom is this knowledge held (or archived) and in what forms? What are the emotional, ethical, and epistemological demands of working with materials from and about QTBIPOC pasts? Throughout the semester, we will discuss scholarship, memoir, film, and visual art by Indigenous and racialized thinkers who ask how queer, trans, and/or feminist pasts are remembered and to what ends. We will also investigate online and local archives ourselves, like the BC Gay and Lesbian Archives, the Black Trans Archive, the Two-Spirit Archive, and the Archive of Queer Brown Feelings. In these ways, we will develop a textured sense of what is involved in seeking to know, imagine, and feel QTBIPOC pasts from multiple perspectives.


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


  • Participation 10%
  • Archives log (2 entries @ 300 words each) 15%
  • Micro essay (300 words) 15%
  • Short essay (1000 words) 25%
  • Final project (essay or creative project) 35%



All course texts will be uploaded to Canvas or shown in class.  


Your personalized Course Material list, including digital and physical textbooks, are available through the SFU Bookstore website by simply entering your Computing ID at: shop.sfu.ca/course-materials/my-personalized-course-materials.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity website 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