Majors & Minors

Feminist Studies

Interdisciplinary in nature, the Feminist Studies Program at Southwestern draws together faculty from across the university. We offer courses in feminist theory, women’s history and literature, feminist art history, and queer studies alongside courses incorporating feminist and queer approaches to sociology, anthropology, theatre, and religious studies.

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Ken Mello

Ken Mello

Associate Professor of Religion & Feminist Studies Chair

Ken Mello

Ken Mello

Associate Professor of Religion & Feminist Studies Chair

Feminist Studies
Feminist Studies

The Feminist Studies curriculum exposes students to the large and ever-growing body of knowledge that makes up the broad category of feminist and gender studies, combining feminist theory with analyses of feminist activism, identifications, and practices.

Our program provides a critical exploration of how prominent categories of difference—gender, race, class, sexuality, disability, age, religion and nation—are constituted, challenged, and altered across time and place.

Part of this project involves revising the findings of traditional disciplines to include knowledge generated through a variety of feminist methodologies.

Students with an academic focus in feminist theories and methodologies are well prepared to succeed in a variety of fields, including non-profit and social services, law, journalism, theology, public policy, health care, cultural studies, education, and numerous other traditional disciplines within the academy.


Feminist Studies is one of the Paideia Minors. Paideia provides intentional opportunities for students to integrate various academic disciplines and experiences, empowering them to develop versatile analytical abilities that lead them to become creative problem solvers who are well equipped to tackle complex issues. Paideia is not a traditional program but provides innovative, structured pathways that enable the acquisition of these invaluable skills.

All SU students are encouraged to graduate with Paideia Distinction by making Paideia a formal part of their studies. This requires completing either one of the Paideia Minors (or two High-Impact Experiences) and successfully completing a Paideia Seminar.

Graduation with Paideia Distinction formally recognizes students’ cultivated curiosity to learn, integrate multiple viewpoints, and create change. The Paideia skills that students develop make SU graduates highly sought-after by recruiters, employers, and graduate programs.

Learn more about the Paideia Seminar, how to apply for it, and how to graduate with Paideia Distinction.



AFTER SOUTHWESTERN

Featured Alumni Stories

Madeline Carrola '19

Finding Home(s)

For sociology and feminist studies double major Madeline Carrola ’19, the Southwestern Experience has informed her roles at organizations supporting individuals experiencing homelessness.

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Chelsey celebrated Circadian’s release at Book Woman

Chelsey Clammer, SU ‘05, Releases New Book, Circadian, Winner of the Red Hen Press Nonfiction Manuscript Award

“I take a different approach to storytelling, and I wouldn’t be where I am today if it weren’t for the critical thinking skills I learned at Southwestern.” - Chelsey Clammer ’05

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EXPLORE SOUTHWESTERN

Feminist Studies News

Lois Durant ’20

The Environmental Diaries

Environmental studies major and architecture and feminist studies double minor Lois Durant ’20 shares her journey in environmental policy in the non-profit sector.

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Washington, D.C.

Southwestern Sumners Scholars Explore Internships in DC

The Hatton W. Sumners Scholars Program creates high-impact experiences for SU’s best and brightest.

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Personifying the University’s core values of “respecting the worth and dignity of persons” and “encouraging activism in the pursuit of justice and the common good,” a group of Southwestern students spent their spring break exploring how the contributions of workers, and especially the labor provided by immigrants, have often been undervalued and even erased in popular narratives about the U.S.’s economic and social progress.

Uncovering Hidden Histories

Southwestern students explore workers’ rights in Asian-American communities.

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EXPLORE SOUTHWESTERN

Feminist Studies Events

Feminist Studies Salon & Information Session

Feminist Studies Salon & Information Session

Join Feminist Studies faculty and students for community & conversation.

Learn about the program and upcoming courses.

Sign-in sheet at the cashier

You do not need to be a declared major to attend. This salon & information session can help you plan your future semester courses.

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