Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies

Row of students listening intently - LG

Gender identity and sexuality shape our culture, our social institutions, and our daily lives. Take an interdisciplinary approach to learning about these forces and their implications.

Degree Options: Major, Double Major, and Minor
Locations: Lincoln Center, Rose Hill
Visit the Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies

Women and girls constitute half of the human race, but you’d never know it from most history books. The female experience is both diverse and startlingly absent in everything from historical accounts to modern representations of power. After having been erased from the narrative for so long, the contributions that women have made to their societies are now being critically examined—and these analyses are gradually expanding. More and more, society is recognizing that gender and sexuality affect how we navigate the world around us, that these pervasive forces can reshape old axes of power and cultivate new ones. Times are changing. If you want to be a part of that change, consider the women’s, gender, and sexuality studies major at Fordham.

Originally founded as the Women’s Studies program, our course offerings have broadened in both scope and depth. Our curriculum has grown to include offerings that explore the diversity of women’s experiences, that investigate their contributions historically and across cultures, and that delve into concurrent emphases on gender and sexuality as primary categories of analysis. You’ll research the diversity of women’s positions and experiences historically, and you’ll play a crucial part in advancing the role of women in the future. By looking at gender today—especially where it intersects with sexuality, class, and race—you’ll become an expert in these intersectionalities that modern-day scholars have embraced. And since this is an integrative major, you’ll take classes in the humanities, arts, and social and natural sciences that focus on these themes.

We want you to excel in your field—and as a human being. That’s why your course of study will be complemented by Fordham’s core curriculum. It’s the centerpiece of our liberal arts education and the foundation upon which every one of our majors is built. In addition to courses on women, gender, and sexuality, you’ll also study philosophy, theology, history, mathematics, languages, science, and the performing arts.

By studying a broad range of topics and taking literal, empirical, and theoretical approaches to your major coursework, you will become adept at traversing a world molded by gender and sexuality, and be encouraged to become an agent of social change who works for the public good.

Program Highlights

As a women’s studies major, you’ll take 10 courses in a range of disciplines. You’ll take:

two requirements

  • Feminist Theories in Intercultural Perspective
  • Historical Texts

seven electives

  • humanities
  • literary studies
  • history
  • social sciences
  • natural sciences

one senior internship, project, or thesis

  • under the direction of an advisor from the women’s studies program

Internships

We connect you with internships in New York City, where the diverse cultures who call it home offer an equally diverse range of female lived experience. Get involved.

We sponsor a yearly series of events and lectures to highlight topics of concern to women and to the field of women’s studies. You’ll meet key artists, activists, scholars, and policymakers from New York City, the U.S., and around the world whose work focuses on gender.

Study Abroad

We enthusiastically encourage you to venture abroad for your women’s studies education. There is a globe of possibilities available through Fordham’s International and Study Abroad Program.

Samples Courses

Gender Images in the Media
Black Feminist Expression
Hysteria/Sexuality/Unconscious
Women in the Bible
Values and Sexuality
The Role of Women in the U.S.
Gender Politics in Latin America
Philosophical Issues in Feminism
Gender, Race and Class
Women Writing Africa
Queer Theory and the Americas
Marriage in the 21st Century

Life After Fordham

Because of the growing importance of women's concerns globally, undergraduates with a concentration in Women's Studies are well prepared for professional programs in:

  • law
  • medicine
  • business
  • and graduate programs in social work, education, arts, and sciences

Whether or not you choose to go to professional or graduate school, you’ll be especially well positioned to work in:

  • education
  • policy institutions
  • development
  • media
  • social work
  • private sector

You get access to our powerful (and Fordham-loyal) network of alumni, who want to see you succeed as they have.