Fall 2024 - SA 335 D100

Gender Relations and Social Issues (S) (4)

Class Number: 2332

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Sep 4 – Dec 3, 2024: Thu, 11:30 a.m.–2:20 p.m.

  • Prerequisites:

    SA 101 or 150 or 201W.



Together we will think about how gender influences and suffuses social interaction, in both historical and contemporary contexts: consider how assumptions and expectations about gender shape identity, the things people do, and how they do them; and discuss gender inequality and equality across society.


Gender inequality has long been central to feminist thought. Although feminists agree that gender need not correspond to anatomy, little consensus exist on how to engage, disrupt, and unsettle relations of domination that arise from gender as a social category. This course is framed under the basic premise that gender is an organizing principle of society, evidenced by the differential social positions occupied by men and women. Using a sociological approach, the course will examine how gender is socially constructed and identify social structures, institutions and cultural producers that reinforce the social boundaries that define gender and dictate people’s life chances. Because gender does not operate in a vacuum, gender will be discussed in relation to other intersecting social categories such as race, class, sexuality, age, nationality, and ethnicity. We will examine how differences based on gender are created and sustained, with particular attention to how other important basis of personal identity – race, class, ethnicity, nationality, migration status – interact with gender relations. Since gender relations are inevitably relations of domination, the course relies on various feminist theories and their analysis of gender, as it intersects with other axes of oppression. To hone understanding of the effects of gender and other forms of difference, focus will be paid to the migration/work nexus as a social issue, a gendered institution and policy framework indispensable for the formation and development of capitalist neoliberal Canada. While the course looks at differences between men and women overall, it also focuses on women’s experiences from multiple angles with the objective of generating unasked questions and interpretations, as well as broadening and complicating feminist analysis of the historical, political, social, and economic relations that systematically gender society, shaping people’s lives differently.


1. Understand how gender and intersecting social relations shape lived experience

2. Historicize feminism and its development over time

3. Identify and explain a range of feminist theories and their ideological framings of equity struggles

4. Conduct primary research and write a research paper as a final project

5. Develop presentation and collaboration skills


  • Group Presentation 15%
  • Attendance and Participation 10%
  • Take Home Mid-Term Exam 25%
  • Conference/Presentation of research project 15%
  • Major Research Project 35%


This syllabus is provisional and may be subject to minor changes. Students will be notified in advance should these arise.

Grading: Where a final exam is scheduled and the student does not write the exam or withdraw from the course before the deadline date, an N grade will be assigned. Unless otherwise specified on the course syllabus, all graded assignments for this course must be completed for a final grade other than N to be assigned. An N is considered as an F for the purposes of scholastic standing.

Grading System: The Undergraduate Course Grading System is as follows:

A+ (95-100) | A (90-94) | A- (85-89) | B+ (80-84) | B (75-79) | B- (70-74) | C+ (65-69) | C (60-64) | C- (55-59) | D (50-54) | F (0-49) | N*
*N standing to indicate the student did not complete course requirements

Academic Honesty and Student Conduct Policies: The Department of Sociology & Anthropology follows SFU policy in relation to grading practices, grade appeals (Policy T20.01), and academic honesty and student conduct procedures (S10‐S10.05). 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.

Centre for Accessible Learning: Students with hidden or visible disabilities who believe they may need classroom or exam accommodations are encouraged to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (1250 Maggie Benston Centre) as soon as possible to ensure that they are eligible and that approved accommodations and services are implemented in a timely fashion.

The Sociology and Anthropology Student Union, SASU, is a governing body of students who are engaged with the department and want to build the SA community. Get involved! Follow them on Instagram!



Readings will be available through the library.

Additional material may be available on Canvas.


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


Students with a faith background who may need accommodations during the term are encouraged to assess their needs as soon as possible and review the Multifaith religious accommodations website. The page outlines ways they begin working toward an accommodation and ensure solutions can be reached in a timely fashion.