This course focuses on women in the workforce. As current statistical data demonstrate women make up a significant and growing portion of the American labor force. However, women’s positions and experiences in the workforce in terms of gender, race, ethnicity, occupation, and class are very diverse, as are the culturally constructed meanings of those position. As such women’s experiences differ greatly based on the specific social and historical contexts in which they work. But while specific conditions of gender based workplace oppression manifest differently, they are structured in systematic ways. The goal of scholars of women and work is to uncover the patterns of inequality in order to find ways to address them.
This course will look at how workplace conditions affect women. They study of women and work is an interdisciplinary endeavor and we will explore this topic using literature from such disciplines as sociology, economics, labor studies and psychology. While the topic of women and work is quite broad, we will focus in on some of the main aspects of this topic. In addition, this class is unique in that it will provide you with the opportunity to enter the world of social scientists as researches. This seminar will be centered on the use of scientific methods to research issues of women and work. You will be required to engage in a step by step research project, and then presenting your work at a research seminar in May. This first hand research experience will be valuable in preparing you to do research in graduate education, nonprofit organizations and corporations.