Academic journal article Women's Studies Quarterly

Topics in Development: Gender and Development

Academic journal article Women's Studies Quarterly

Topics in Development: Gender and Development

Article excerpt

Course Description

This course examines men and women's lives in less developed countries and the impact upon them as a result of development and incorporation into global, economic, and political systems. The course begins with theoretical approaches to gender and development, development theory, and feminist critiques. We then turn to how social change (positive or negative development) happens. We will examine in detail issues of production (formal and informal work), reproduction (health, child survival, and fertility), and the family/household nexus (where production and reproduction meet). Woven throughout the course will be themes about (1) micro and macro processes, perspectives, and levels of analysis and (2) research methods and policy applications, given a practitioner's structural position. The course will offer two applied projects for students to work on. The first is the development of material for a Web page and two Internet network discussions to take place on the Gender and Development Policy Network ( The second project is to assist the new Gender Division of the World Bank in assessing the gender content of bank projects. This will involve summarizing the gender content of forty to fifty projects at the bank, selecting and analyzing five case studies among the projects, and writing an evaluative report for limited circulation within the Bank.


1. Reading and class participation: This is one of the most important requirements. To facilitate your participation each week two people will be required to provide a one-paragraph summary of each reading and questions for discussion. Every person is expected to participate each week.

2. Participation in two projects:

The Gender and Development Policy Network (GDPN, may choose to work on the planning and evaluation discussion group or the gender and globalization discussion group. You should participate in the two, two-week Internet discussions organized by the liaisons and members of the GDPN Advisory Council. A gender critique for the Gender Division of the World Bank-provision of project summaries and a report to the Bank.

3. Attendance at the Center for Migration and Development Lec-ture Series.

4. Books and articles: Books and articles are all on reserve in the Woodrow Wilson School library.

5. Extra credit: Guidelines for how to do a gender country profile (this can be a group effort).

Part 1. Gender, Development, and Theoretical Perspectives

Week 1. Introductions and Planning for the Semester-Leveling the Field: Understanding Social Change and Development


Boserup, Ester. 1970. Woman 's Role in Economic Development. London: Alien & Unwin.

Fernandez Kelly, Patricia M. 1994. "Broadening the Scope: Gender and the Study of International Development." In Douglas Kincaid and Alejandro Portes (editors) Comparative National Development: Soaety and Economy in the New Global Order. Chapel Hill, N.C.: University of North Carolina Press. Pp. 143-68.

Portes, Alejandro. 1997. "Neoliberalism and the Sociology of Development. " Population and Development Review 23 (2) : 229-60


Jaffee, David. 1990. Levels of Socioeconomic Development Theory. New York: Praeger.

Kincaid, Douglas, and Alejandro Fortes (editors). 1994. Comparative National Development: Society and Economy in the New Global Order. Chapel Hill, N.C.: University of North Carolina Press.

Class Schedule

1st hour: Personal introductions, overview of course and requirements.

2nd hour: Lecture on theories of social change (economic, political and social) and the gender perspective.

3rd hour: Assignment of liaisons for the World Bank and for the Gender and Development Policy Network, brainstorming of projects and planning, establishing tentative schedule for production of reports and discussion sessions. …

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