Gender Studies | Problems in Gender Studies: Gender, Sexuality and the Law
G402 | 32274 | Walters, S

This advanced seminar examines the legal regulation of gender and
sexuality. On one level, we examine concrete legal cases to learn
about the history of constitutional interpretation and the current
status of rights for women and sexual minorities.  But, the course
will focus more on the examination of important theoretical issues
emerging in the writings of diverse feminist and queer legal
scholars. Among the theoretical issues addressed are debates over
the value of conventional equality approaches in legal doctrine,
equality versus difference perspectives, ways in which legal
language constructs gender and sexuality, the incorporation of
sexuality and gender in ideologies of law, and the intersections of
gender, sexuality, and race in legal doctrine and legal theory.
Questions/topics to be addressed include: How have sexuality and
gender been defined in and through the U.S. legal system?  How do
these legal discourses impact the broader national conversation
about gender and sexual norms?  What role do legal advocacy and
jurisprudence have in shaping a “liberatory” gender politics?  What
are the limits of legal reform strategies in the quest for sexual
and gender “liberation”?