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Introduction to Gender Studies : 19-20th century

Faculté de gestion: Faculté des lettres

Responsable(s): Valérie Cossy

Période de validité: 2019 ->

Horaires du cours (Hebdomadaire)

Date Lieu Remarque Thématique Intervenant(s)
2020/2021 : Mardi 10:15-12:00 (Hebdomadaire) Synathlon/2218 EN LIGNE   Valérie Cossy


Semestre d'automne
2 heures par semaine
28 heures par semestre
Langue(s) d'enseignement: anglais
Public: Oui
Crédits: 4.00


The aim of this class is to understand the articulation of gender as inequality between man and woman in the nineteenth century and how the patriarchal consensus was gradually destabilized by early feminist activists, thinkers, and writers. The class is going to be based on two texts by Virginia Woolf: her famous essay A Room of One's Own (1929) and her novel Orlando (1928). Starting from these texts, we will interrogate the literary tradition from a feminist perspective as Woolf invites the readers to do in A Room of One's Own: how relevant is it to literature that auhtors of the canon should be almost exclusively men? Were there women poets, playwrights, novelists at all? How is the representation of gender impacted by the imbalance of the canon? Can things be changed?... The novel Orlando gives us the opportunity to see how the category of sexual difference was itself interrogated long before Simone de Beauvoir or Judith Butler, by Woolf relying empirically on the genre of biography and by interrogating the relationship between experience and symbols. As early as 1928 she produced a narrative questioning the place of gender in the constitution of human identity and undermined the understanding of gender in so far essentialist terms. Each of these issues brought up by Woolf is going to resonate with source-texts from the nineteenth century in order to understand the feminist break of the twentieth century in relation to the history of gender representation since the nineteenth century.


Presenting Virginia Woolf in relation to the nineteenth century and the Victorian inheritance on the basis of her essay A Room of One's Own and her novel Orlando.

Close-reading A Room of One's Own and Orlando together in class.

Focusing on the articulation of early feminism.

Students must read by themselves A Room of One's Own and Orlando as well as the texts or extracts from texts posted on the Moodle page of the class.

Each class is going to focus on an issue presented by the teacher and discussed together on the basis of the texts read by all.

Students must come to class ready to take part in discussions on the basis of what they are expected to read for each week.


Validation is awarded on the basis of class participation and a 2500-word essay to be handed in before the end of the term.


Virginia Woolf, A Room of One's Own, Three Guineas, ed. by Anna Snaith, Oxford World's Classics, 2015 Virginia Woolf, Orlando, ed. by Michael W. Whithworth, Oxford World's Classics, 2014 These are the two class texts. The books have been ordered and will be available from Basta Dorigny for the rentrée. If, because of the Covid, Anthropole was still not open to students, the books would be made available from Basta in town, place Chauderon (Rue du Petit Rocher 4) The Moodle page of this cours-séminaire will provide the necessary extracts from the other texts considered in class.

Informations supplémentaires


UtilisationCode facultéStatutCrédits
Anglais, 2ème partie (2013 ->) ›› Littérature comparée - BA-ANG-2-201040Optionnel4.00
Anglais, 2ème partie (2013 ->) ›› Études genre - BA-ANG-2-201060Optionnel4.00
A40-ANGL: Attestation 40 ECTS en anglais (2013 ->) - A40-ANGL ›› Littérature comparée et Gender Studies - A40-ANGL-2-40Optionnel4.00
NIV-ANG: Mise à niveau MA, Anglais (2013 ->) - NIV-ANG ›› Littérature comparée - NIV-ANG-2-201040Optionnel4.00
NIV-ANG: Mise à niveau MA, Anglais (2013 ->) - NIV-ANG ›› Études genre - NIV-ANG-2-201060Optionnel4.00
Programme à option "transitoire", 2ème partie (2013 ->) ›› Comparatismes - BA-OP-COMP-TOptionnel4.00
Programme à option "transitoire", 2ème partie (2013 ->) ›› Littérature comparée et Gender Studies - BA-OP-ANGL-TOptionnel4.00
Programme à options, 2ème partie (2013 ->) ›› Comparatismes - BA-OP-COMPOptionnel4.00
Programme à options, 2ème partie (2013 ->) ›› Littérature comparée et Gender Studies - BA-OP-ANGLOptionnel4.00
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