Friday, July 13, 2007

Higher Indoctrination at Kentucky's Universities: Part II: Reinterpreting the Birds and the Bees

Last time in our continuing series about the fun ways in which our state's institutions of higher education spend the tax money of conservative Kentuckians to fund left-wing ideology, we featured a course offering from the "Women's Studies" department at Lee Todd's University of Kentucky. But just so we aren't accused of special favoritism toward UK, let's take a look at the "Women and Gender Studies" department over at James Ramsey's University of Louisville.

Lest we worry that only UK students have access to indoctrination in special interest politics (and that would, of course, be inequitable, which is bad), we can comfort ourselves in knowing the following course is available to U of L students:
3516 201-01 Women in Amer Culture H CD2 (Hum), SAT 10:00-1:00, Heinecken, LF 130
3816 201-02 Women in Amer Culture H CD2 (Hum), TTh 2:30-3:45, Heinecken, DA 202

This class will introduce students to some of the major concepts and theoretical frameworks of feminism. We will investigate gender, race, class, and sexual systems through examinations of everyday culture. The course readings briefly outline the history and guiding concepts of contemporary feminism (s) and move into an investigation of the social realities currently affecting women in US culture. We will investigate the concepts of discrimination, oppression versus privilege, and domination and subordination. The readings stress the systemic nature of oppression, emphasizing the ways that race/ethnicity, class, sexuality, and gender intersect in our lives. We will also examine some consequences of inequalities including the wage gap, violence against women, racism and sexism in education, and the representation of women in the media. The course will further examine some of the proactive ways in which women have resisted and responded to these systems.
This class, of course, is the opposite of the other course U of L offers from a conservative perspective called,... oh, wait. I forgot. There isn't one.

What was I thinking?

Of course we could ask where this group of radical feminists, with a comfy perch at the university and a virtual ideological monopoly, gets off talking about being oppressed. They get a whole department to themselves, after all.

But if there isn't a course from the opposing perspective, wouldn't that mean that there was no diversity in the course offerings at U of L, and isn't diversity what U of L is all about? In fact, I could have sworn that U of L President James Ramsey used the word 'diversity' at least 672 times in his testimony before the House Health and Welfare Committee last March when he falsely claimed to legislators that U of L was not subsidizing its domestic partner benefit plan when it turned out that that's exactly what it was doing all along.

And didn't he say, somewhere in the midst of all those false statements, that U of L needed to be a diverse place in order to attract good talent? And surely we could trust him, since it would defy statistical probability for there to be that many false statements from one university president during the short time he was at the committee table.

It's all so confusing. But hold on. There may be cause for hope in this class, called, "Sociology of Gender":
11538 313-01 Sociology of Gender (Ssci), TTh 9:30-10:45, Marshall, HM 106, Soc 327-01
11540 313-02 Sociology of Gender (Ssci), Th 11:00-12:15, Marshall, HM 106, Soc 327-02
How were women imagined in Renaissance England? What criteria did people use to distinguish between “women” and “men”? In what ways were ideas about gender and sexuality related to other cultural discourses at this time? This class will explore these kinds of questions by analyzing the writings of Shakespeare and his contemporaries. We will focus our attention primarily on literary texts by and about women, but we will also survey a range of other materials such as anatomy books, religious treatises, legal documents, and popular pamphlets. In addition to formal essays and/or exams, students may be expected to post informal analytical response papers to an electronic course listserv on a weekly basis. Active class participation is a must.
Now most people do not know that, in Elizabethan England (that is the period of history when England was ruled by Elizabeth I, who, some speculate, was a woman), people apparently did not know how to tell the difference between boys and girls. But the crack historical detectives in U of L's "Women's Studies" departments are not letting their own belief that gender is socially constructed get in the way of helping the Elizabethans out.

Although some would argue that modern feminist ideologues, who think that boys are boys because their parents made them play with trucks, and girls are girls because their parents made them play with dolls, are probably not the best bunch of people to be offering advice to anyone on how to distinguish between the genders.

But this looks promising. They have apparently discovered anatomy books. Maybe there's hope yet.

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