Between Politics and Discipline: Gender Studies in an Institutional Setting

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Sreenivas, Deepa
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This article draws on the classroom experiences of the author to reflect on the pedagogic shifts in Gender Studies. Along with its recognition as being a ‘proper’ discipline and the need to have Gender Studies at all levels in a university, comes the question of legitimacy. It must now be defined by boundaries, protocols and methodologies. I look at the manner in which these conditions unfold in two settings—in the undergraduate and the research classrooms. In the first context, young, freshly-out-of-school students appear to view Gender Studies as a gender sensitisation programme while in the latter methodological/ empirical certainties often take precedence over the need for analytical probing. In both cases, the initial imagination of the subject as a ‘critical perspective’ across disciplines appears to yield to a more official, programmatic understanding. In my own context, I grapple with the simultaneous visibility and reduction of Women’s/Gender Studies.
discipline, gender studies, higher education, Pedagogy
Indian Journal of Gender Studies. v.22(2)