University of Southern Indiana
Flowers on the Lake ceremony

Gender Studies

Gender studies seeks to advance understanding of the meaning and role of gender in social life. Doing so requires looking at gender against the backdrop of cultural, political, historical and social institutions and in relation to other influences such as class, race, sexuality, and nationality. As such, gender studies is inherently interdisciplinary.

The Gender Studies minor at the University of Southern Indiana explores the fascinating and complex connections between sex, gender, human sexuality, and sexual orientation across multiple disciplines, including history, economics, criminal justice, sociology, English, philosophy, communication studies, management, and psychology. Coursework provides students with a wide range of perspectives that greatly enrich their education.

View Minor Course Requirements

Gender is one of  the most fundamental facts of existence, and courses in this minor serves to enhance students' understanding of its deep significance. The Gender Studies minor is an excellent complement to any major.

The Gender Studies minor prepares students for graduate studies in virtually any liberal arts field, particularly sociology, psychology, philosophy, history, English, communication studies, and social work, and for any career in which a more fully realized understanding of human complexity is valued.

Program Objectives

  • Increase student understanding of the biological, psychological, cultural, and social dimensions of sex and gender.
  • Provide an arena of critical scholarly thought on issues of gender and sexuality.
  • Allow for the exploration of relevant gender issues such as gender identity, sexual orientation, family structure, and the intersection of race, ethnicity, class, and ability. 

2020 Suffrage “Celebration”

The Woman’s Suffrage Amendment will be one-hundred years old in 2020. While this is an accomplishment worth celebrating, it is also one with a mixed legacy. Though women won the rights of citizenship and access to the ballot, that victory was not extended to all women or all Americans for decades after. Today the United States celebrates its legacy as a model democratic nation, yet many still do not enjoy the full rights of suffrage and political forces have conspired to limit access to the ballot and dilute the power of the vote.

The University of Southern Indiana’s Gender Studies Committee in partnership with Africana Studies and Global Studies will be hosting a student conference in October 2020 to exhibit student research, art, and other creative works that focus on the “celebration” of the women’s suffrage amendment, its complicated legacy, and the challenges that lay ahead.

Call for Papers

This conference aims to explore the complicated history of women’s suffrage in the United States and beyond, as well as the question of citizenship, and who has access to citizenship. The conference committee welcomes papers, posters, art work, poetry and literature, and performances in the following areas:

  • Women’s access to the ballot and the rights of citizenship globally
  • The relationship between the ballot and feminism and anti-feminism
  • Immigrant and migrant voting rights
  • Barriers to voting that pre-date the contemporary period – grandfather clauses, poll taxes, literacy tests, violence, etc.
  • Contemporary barriers to voting – gerrymandering, felony exclusions, voter identification laws, vote tampering, etc.

For more information, please contact Dr. Denise Lynn at dmlynn1@usi.edu.

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