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					White Privilege and Male Privilege: A Personal Account of Coming to See
Correspondences through Work in Women’s Studies


ABOUT THE NATIONAL WOMEN'S STUDIES ASSOCIATION


NWSA MISSION

The National Women's Studies Association leads the field of women’s studies in
educational and social transformation.

ABOUT NWSA

Established in 1977, NWSA is a professional organization dedicated to leading the
field of women's studies and gender studies, as well as its teaching, learning, research,
and service wherever they be found.

Our members actively pursue a just world in which all persons can develop to their
fullest potential – one free from ideologies, structures, or systems of privilege that
oppress or exploit some for the advantage of others. In support of their work, we believe:

      Women's studies is vital to education;
      Women’s studies is comparative, global, intersectional, and interdisciplinary;
      Scholarship, activism, and teaching are inseparable elements of a single whole.

We are further committed to a vision of education and scholarship that includes:

      Faculty, students, centers, other campus organizations, and community scholars;
      Creating the space for an exchange of regional, national, and international
       scholars; and
      Critical reflection and dialogue among community organizations on the social
       meaning and use in women's and gender studies broadly conceived.

We serve our members through

      publications
      convening
      professional development activities
      supporting scholarship that transforms knowledge of women and puts that
       knowledge into practice

As such, we lead the field of women’s studies/gender studies in social and educational
transformation.
Women’s Studies Concentration
The Women’s Studies Concentration seeks

      To provide concentrators with an understanding of the interdisciplinary
       scholarship on women, gender, and sexuality and to train them in interdisciplinary
       methods.
      To offer theoretical and practical approaches to feminist thinking cross the
       disciplines.
      To encourage comparative thinking through coursework that explores the
       multicultural and global nature of feminist scholarship.
      To train concentrators to think analytically by teaching them to read and write
       critically.
      To provide supporting skills and contexts for the study of women through the
       cognate requirement.
      To encourage intellectual and academic breadth through a cognate requirement.

Concentration (Major) Requirements
University of Michigan

Concentration Program. 33 credits, distributed as follows (of these credits, 27 must
be at the 300 level or above):

   1. Courses in Women’s Studies: Concentrators must complete areas A through E
      below.

          A. Feminist Theory
          B. Courses in Thematic areas. At least one course from each of four areas
             must be taken. Only one course may count in two areas. If such a course is
             double-counted, an additional elective must be chosen to reach the
             required 33 credits.

                  1. LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer)
                     and Sexuality Studies offers an interdisciplinary approach to
                     sexuality in light of religious beliefs, legal codes, medical
                     constructions and social movements, and recognizes these as
                     historically variable and culturally specific. It acquaints students
                     with the history of sexuality and contributions made by feminist
                     and queer theory to understanding the formation of sexual
                     identities.
                  2. Gender, Race and Ethnicity in the U.S. examines the intersection
                     of gender, race, and ethnicity in order to consider differences
                     among women and men, as well as the impact of multiple
                     categories of identity on experience and on the formation and
                     contestation of gender itself. Interracial and interethnic relations,
                     the mutual influence of social movements, and racialized genders
                      are also explored. Although the U.S. is the primary focus,
                      consideration of various diasporas encourages analysis of the links
                      between communities across national borders.
                  3. Gender, Culture, and Representation explores ways in which
                      meanings about women and gender are produced through cultural
                      images, artifacts, and performances. It positions students as
                      readers, viewers, and interpreters of culture, as well as creators of
                      it, especially in the domains of literature, the visual and performing
                      arts, mass media (including film), and their histories. Courses
                      introduce students to feminist analyses of culture and encourage
                      them to consider processes of viewing, writing, and producing
                      knowledge.
                  4. Gender in a Global Context offers a comparative cross-cultural
                      perspective on the construction and meaning of gender, race, class,
                      and sexuality. It examines current forces of globalization and
                      empire, the histories of imperialism and colonialism, and
                      postcolonial resistance and theory. Courses decenter the U.S. while
                      placing it in a geopolitical context, including global feminisms.
           C. Practice Course. One course chosen from:
              WS 350 Women and the Community
              WS 420 Group Facilitation in Women’s Studies
              WS 425 Feminist Practice of Oral History
              WS 485/Psych 485 Gender, Mentoring, and Technology
              Soc 389 Project Community, Gender and Sexuality sections (including
              SAFE House, It's Great to Be A Girl, Planned Parenthood, Working with
              the LGBTQ Community.)
           D. Women’s Studies Electives. At least six Women's Studies credits
              (normally two courses).
           E. Senior Capstone Seminar.
              Womenstd 440 Issues and Controversies in the New Scholarship on
              Women (offered winter term only.)

Key Points:

The reluctance of males and whites to recognize that they have special unearned
privileges which give them advantages is examined the article concludes with an
extensive list of everyday, taken-for-granted, white privileges.

   Males and whites are taught not to recognize their privileges; they can admit that
    others are underprivileged, but can't see the corollary to this.

   Denial of male over-privilege is seen in a variety of arguments males make against
    changing the academic curriculum to reduce male centrality and dominance.

   Author lists 46 special privileges she (and other whites) take for granted daily -
    privileges not enjoyed by nonwhites. Do you experience any of these privileges?

				
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