OPEN CLASS “GENDER, SEXUALITY AND BIOPOLITICS”

This course will be an introduction to the concepts and issues related to topics of sexuality, gender, biopolitics, and their interrelatedness. Since the course is aiming at developing an interdisciplinary understanding and analysis, students will learn about the historical, philosophical, political,  psychoanalytic and biological perspectives on sexuality and gender issues. We will analyse and discuss the emergence and the impact of some of the most meaningful themes and analytic frameworks of contemporary social, political, and cultural theory: feminism, gender theory, sex and sexuality, and how they have been defined, framed, normalized, controlled, as well as their revolutionary, disruptive, and creative potential. At the end of the course, the students will achieve a basic understanding of concepts and issues related to these topics and have the to grasp the developments and shifting configurations in western thought, and be able to analyse a range of interdisciplinary tools and methods for understanding and analyzing gender, sexuality and biopolitics.
Julie Reshe is a philosopher, blogger and a practicing negative psychoanalyst. is a philosopher, blogger and a practicing negative psychoanalyst. She received her PhD in Philosophy and Psychoanalysis at The Research Centre of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts. She publishes widely in English-, Russian- and Ukrainian-language academic journals as well as in mainstream and marginal print and online media and has her own blogs (Rus, Eng). Her recent book “Introduction to Philosophy: The Plasticity of Everyday Life” was nominated for the Alexander Piatigorsky Award. 

Corinne Doria is a historian specializing in the social history of medicine and disability. She received a doctoral degree in Modern History at Paris 1-Panthéon-Sorbonne University and the University of Milan in 2012. In 2013-2014, she was a Postdoctoral Fellow at Paris-4. She taught Modern History Paris 1 University and Disability Studies at Sciences-Po Paris from 2014 to 2018. In 2019 she was Associate Research Fellow at the Italian Academy for Advanced Studies at Columbia University. She authored four books and more than twenty peer-reviewed articles.

The course is taught in English.

Class meetings are conducted using Zoom. After registration for the course, you will start receiving weekly emails with an invitation to join class online meetings. To attend meetings, all you have to do is click on the link from your email invitation at the beginning of each scheduled class. You will also get access to recorded lectures.

If you want to join seminars and group works, please note that students suppose to have the privilege of interaction with professors and each other

Registration 

April 20 – June 13, 2020

Monday, 12:30-14:00, Tuesday, 17:40-19:10; Thursday, 16:00-17:30, Saturday, 19:20-20:50.

April 20-25, 2020

Lecture 1, April 20: Introduction to Course. Gender, Sexuality and Biopolitics: Key Terms and Issues

Seminar 1, April 21: Meade,Teresa A, Merry E. Wiesner-Hanks (eds). A Companion to Gender History. London: Blackwell, 2006, 11-25;51-69

Group work 1, April 23: Relying in the lecture and the readings, the students will discuss about the definitions and uses of the terms “Gender” , “Sexuality” and” Biopolitics”

Seminar 2, April 25: Repo, Jemima. The Biopolitics of Gender, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015, 158-182

April 27-May 2, 2020

Lecture 2, April 27: Masculine Domination

Seminar 3, April 28: Bourdieu, Pierre. Masculine Domination, Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2001 (1998),54-80.

Group work 2, April 30: Debate: Patriarchy and Masculine Domination: What’s the Way Out? Relying on the lecture and the readings, the students will debate on success and failure of the attempts to undermine, reverse or challenge the patriarchy and its social and cultural consequences

May 4-8, 2020

Seminar 4, May 4, 12:30: De Beauvoir, Simone.
The Second Sex ,London:Vintage Books, 1989 (1946), 79-86.
Despentes,Virginie. King Kong Theory, London: Serpents Tail, 2009 (2006), 1-9

Lecture 3, May 4, 19:00: Sexual normativity: A Historical Survey

Seminar 5, May 7, 16:00: Kinsey, Alfred,Sexual Behavior in the Human Male . Philadelphia: Saunders, 1948, 218-237

Group work 3, May 8, 12:30: Relying on readings and lecture student teams will debate on the meaning and uses of norms and normativity in sexual behaviours

May 11-16, 2020

Seminar 6, May 11, 12:30: Repo, Jemima. The Biopolitics of Gender, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015, 24-48

Lecture 4, May 11: Pornography and Feminism

Seminar 7, May 12: Lahure, Matthieu.’’ Is Pornographi a Tool of Oppression?’’. Esprit, 10(1): 2013: 29-40.

Group work 4, May 14: Debate on the theme Pornography: A Tool of Objectification or Empowerment?

Seminar 8, May 16: Ciclitira, Karen. “Pornography, Women and Feminism: Between Pleasure and Politic”,Sexualities 7(3), 2004:281-301

May 18-23, 2020

Lecture 5, May 18: Queering Plato and Freud

Seminar 9, May 19:
Stella Sandford, Plato and Sex (Ch3. ‘Eros and Sexuality, Plato and Freud, pp. 71-98)
Alenka Zupančič, ‘What Is Sex?’ (Ch.1 It’s getting strange in here, pp. 1-12)

Group work 5, May 21: Trial of Socrates
Relying on readings and lecture, 3 group of students (prosecutors, defense attorneys, and judges) will participate in ‘Trial of Socrates’

Seminar 10, May 23:
Stella Sandford, Plato and Sex (Ch3. ‘Eros and Sexuality, Plato and Freud, pp. 71-98)
Alenka Zupančič, ‘What Is Sex?’ (Ch.1 It’s getting strange in here, pp. 1-12)

May 25-30, 2020

Lecture 6, May 25: Human sexuality and sexual fluidity

Seminar 11, May 26:
Lisa M. Diamond, Sexual Fluidity ( 8. Implication of Female Sexual Fluidity) pp. 235-263
Bailey JM, Vasey PL, Diamond LM, Breedlove SM, Vilain E, Epprecht M “Sexual Orientation, Controversy, and Science”

Group work 6, May 28: Group peer review of essay drafts
Students dealing with related topics will be grouped together for the feedback process.

Seminar 12, May 30:
Lisa M. Diamond, Sexual Fluidity ( 8. Implication of Female Sexual Fluidity) pp. 235-263
Bailey JM, Vasey PL, Diamond LM, Breedlove SM, Vilain E, Epprecht M “Sexual Orientation, Controversy, and Science”

June 1-6, 2020

Lecture 7, June 1: What is love? Attachment theory and social cognitive neuroscience

Seminar 13, June 2:
Bowlby J, Attachment. Attachment and Loss Vol. I (12. Nature and Function of Attachment Behaviour pp. 210-235)
Matthew Lieberman, The Social Brain
(1.2 The Brain’s Passion pp. 14-37)

Group work 7, June 4: Debate Is sexual orientation inborn or a choice or what?
Relying on readings and lecture student teams will discuss if sexual orientation inborn or a choice

Seminar 14, June 6:
Bowlby J, Attachment. Attachment and Loss Vol. I (12. Nature and Function of Attachment Behaviour pp. 210-235)
Matthew Lieberman, The Social Brain
(1.2 The Brain’s Passin pp. 14-37)

June 8-13, 2020

Lecture 8, June 8: Concluding class: Future perspectives
Queer and Asexuality

Seminar 15, June 9: Anon, “Queercore”
Anthony F. Bogaert, Understanding Asexuality (8 The Madness of Sex pp. 95-105; 10. A Monster in All of Our Lives, pp. 115-123)

Group work 8, June 11: Workshop “Creating a Monster”
During this workshop, student teams will work on their own models of gender-free humanity

Seminar 16, June 13: Anon, “Queercore”
Anthony F. Bogaert, Understanding Asexuality (8 The Madness of Sex pp. 95-105; 10. A Monster in All of Our Lives, pp. 115-123)