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Women's and Gender Studies

Program(s) Offered: Major, Minor

Our interdisciplinary program is a place of vibrant learning where we challenge students to think critically about gender-related issues, to learn about the world through the lens of feminism and to become passionate about issues of social equality.

Since the late 20th century, feminist scholarship has explored the important, but sometimes hidden, ways that gender and gender inequality shape and are shaped by our cultural, social and personal worlds. More recent developments in the field recognize that these concerns are intricately connected with other dimensions of social power and identity, such as race, class, gender identity and sexual orientation.

Engaging courses taught by expert faculty from multiple disciplines as well as opportunities for internships and research allow our students to address the intersections of gender and other social variables through classroom and real-world settings.


New WGS Courses

ECON 342: The Economics of Race & Gender

In this course, students are exposed to the political economy of race and gender. Topics addressed include: race/gender in the labor market; household decision making and bargaining; the duality between race/gender and public policy; and structures of constraint and social reproduction. These topics will be addressed from a pluralist perspective where arguments and models from multiple economic paradigms will be introduced.

This course will be taught by Tabitha Knight, a new faculty member in Economics.

Tabitha Knight, Economics

Tabitha KnightKnight comes to Willamette from Colorado State University, where she successfully defended her doctorate in May. Her recently defended dissertation is titled, “The Gender Dynamics of Public Finance: A Chinese and Cross-Country Analysis.” A feminist macroeconomist, Knight's expertise is in the intersection of economic development, international trade and finance, and the economics of race and gender. She currently has a paper evaluating the effects of public spending on women and men’s relative welfare (as measured by employment growth) in China under review at Feminist Economics. She earned her BS in business administration (finance) from California State University, Sacramento. Her training in heterodox theories will be a great resource as the department continues to develop the revised major. Knight is married, and she enjoys working in her wood shop, playing with her dog Sarah, snowboarding and watching sports programming in her free time. Two years ago, she learned to ice skate to play ice hockey in a recreational league.