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College of Arts and Sciences

Women’s and Gender Studies

Gender Studies is a field of interdisciplinary study devoted to gender identity and gendered representation as central categories of analysis.  The field includes women’s studies (concerning women, feminism, gender, and politics), men’s studies, and LGBT (lesbian/gay/bisexual/transgender) studies.  These disciplines study gender and sexuality in the fields of literature, language, history, political science, sociology, anthropology, cinema, media studies, human development, law, and medicine.  Race, ethnicity, location, nationality, and disability are also analyzed.

After women in America were granted the vote in the 20th century, followed by the women’s liberation movement of the 1970s, feminists began to look at – and question -- the usual, accepted versions of history.  This gave birth to Women’s and Gender Studies.

At the College of Arts & Sciences, Women’s and Gender Studies (WGST) is an interdisciplinary field offering courses on a wide variety of topics ranging from women’s health, to literature, to globalization.  WGST is about understanding the world in ways that value gender equity, racial equality, and social justice.  Students engage with real-life issues in the classroom.

WGST sponsors an annual Women’s and Gender Studies Conference attended by leading scholars, activists, and artists.   And in 2001, the program developed the Women’s Well-Being Initiative to improve the overall well-being of South Carolina’s women and girls.

The College of Arts & Sciences offers a Bachelor of Arts degree in Women’s and Gender Studies.  With that degree, graduates can pursue a career in health care, teaching, law, criminal justice, higher education, art, writing, journalism, social work,  business, and other fields.  Our graduates’ multidisciplinary studies in WGST prepare them to work in an increasingly globalized and diversified world. 

For further information, contact:

Dr. Suzanne Swan, Undergraduate Director, 803-777-2558,

Visit our program's page.