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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Social and Political Science : Science, Technology and Innovation Studies

Undergraduate Course: Gender and Environment (STIS10012)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Social and Political Science CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryHow can we understand the relationship between gender and environment? How have others in the social sciences theorized gender, environment and their relationship, including recent trends in this area? Through topics such as climate change, resource creation and use, consumption, conservation and human population, this course will address the gender dimensions of environmental issues. The course introduces students to a number of theories, debates and concepts including from ecofeminism, feminist studies of science and technology, and standpoint theory. In doing so, we will examine how gender (masculinities/femininities) intersects with other social categorisations. The course addresses the relationship between the personal and the political, scholarship and activism.
Course description This interdisciplinary course exposes students to key theories and concepts for understanding the relationship between gender and environment. Drawing on development studies, geography, science and technology studies, sociology and animal studies students will develop a critical understanding of scholarship and action regarding the symbolic and material dimensions of gender-environment relations.
The course structure follows the scales at which gender-environment relations are manifest: from objects, bodies, households and communities to social movements, nations and the global. Topics including Sports Utility Vehicles, human-animal relations, reproduction, climate change, fracking, and eco-technologies in the home will be used to explore bodies of thinking and writing in the area of gender and environment. Working with the notion of intersectionality we will identify the interconnections and interactions of social categorisations for a given environmental issue, thus avoiding man/woman binaries or simplistic explanations of domination and power. At the same time we will examine how, in specific contexts of environmental concerns, social categorisations such as masculine, human and natural are challenged, reproduced or remade.
At the end of the course, students will have a critical understanding of the changing theorising of gender-environment relations in the social sciences, including recent advances. Students will also have acquired knowledge of empirical examples and methodological tools for conducting gender-sensitive analysis of environmental issues.
For assessment, there are two elements. First, students are expected to identify an academic book relevant to gender and environment. Students will (i) write a 1000-word book review (30%). Second, there is a long 3000-word essay (70%).
While students will be encouraged to identify both a book to review and a title for the long-essay (with the help and approval of the course organiser), suggested book and essay titles will be listed in the course handbook.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesVisiting students should have at least 4 humanities or social science courses at grade B or above (or be predicted to obtain this). We will only consider University/College level courses.
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  48
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 10, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 10, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 176 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) 30% Book review (1000 words)«br /»
70% Long essay (3000 words)«br /»
Feedback The book review provides formative feedback for the essay.

Book reviews will be returned with feedback within 15 working days of submission.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Engage critically with the work of feminist scholars, and evaluate their arguments for understanding gender-environment relations
  2. Assess competing claims and make informed judgments about the gender dimensions of current complex environmental issues
  3. Apply concepts and approaches used by scholars and practitioners in linking gender and environmental issues to a range of empirical cases
  4. Develop their ability to present - in written and verbal form -- coherent, balanced arguments surrounding gender-environment relations
Reading List
Buckingham, Susan (2000), Gender and Environment, London: Routledge.
Gaard, Greta (2011) Ecofeminism Revisited: Rejecting Essentialism and Re-Placing Species in a Material Feminist Environmentalism, Feminist Formations, 23(2): 26¿53.
Haraway, Donna (2016) Staying with the Trouble : Making Kin in the Chthulucene, Durham: Duke University Press.
Kaijser, Anna and Kronsell, Annica (2014) Climate change
through the lens of intersectionality, Environmental Politics, 23(3): 417-433.
MacGregor, Sherilyn (2009) A stranger silence still: the need for feminist social research on climate change, The Sociological Review, 57: 124-140.
Plumwood, Val (2001) Environmental Culture: The Ecological Crisis of Reason, London: Routledge.
Sturgeon, Noël (1997) Ecofeminist Natures: Race, Gender, Feminist Theory and Political Action, London: Routledge.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Sarah Parry
Tel: (0131 6)50 6389
Course secretaryMr Brodie Hamilton
Tel: (0131 6)51 3139
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