Workshop for Dissertation Writers in Women’s and Gender Studies

Fall and Spring: Tuesdays 1 – 4 PM, 9.8.09-5.11.10

A writing workshop for dissertation writers.  Classes will include presentation and discussion of students’ work-in-progress. Discussion will move back and forth between theoretical considerations and practical ones as we address three subjects central to dissertation work: data and the archive, methodology, and explanation or interperetation. Students will be asked to reflect on ways that feminism and gender studies have affected their discipline’s views of what data are considered relevant and on the question of what body of materials is best suited to answer the questions raised in each of their dissertations.  We will also consider general issues of scholarly method, methodological issues that feminism and gender studies have raised, and methodological issues prominent within the major topics of the participants’ different disciplinary fields.  The inquiry into explanation and interperetation will ask how dissertation writers convince various audiences that their work is significant. Each student will also give an oral presentation that has been consciously adapted for an interdisciplinary audience. Enrollment is limited to ten students.


Janet Z. Giele is Professor Emerita of Sociology, Social Policy, and Women’s Studies at the Heller School for Social Policy and Mangement of Brandeis University. Her research focuses on the changing life course of women and the emergence of American family policy.   She is the author, editor, or co-editor of Women: Roles and Status in Eight Countries (1977), Women and the Future (1978), Women in the Middle Years  (1982), Women and Work: The Continuing Struggle Worldwide (1992), To Paths to Women’s Equality (1995), Metohds of Life Course Research (1998), Women’s Equality in the Workplace (2004), Changing Life Patterns in Western Industrial Societies (2004), and The Craft of Life Course Research  (2009).

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Consortium for Graduate Studies in Gender, Culture, Women, and Sexuality
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 14N-211
77 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139
Phone: 617-324-2085