Law is never neutral, and this is particularly so in relation to gender and sexuality. This module examines how gender and sexuality are framed in law and critically interrogates the social and cultural norms which shape this. It asks whether law is keeping up with changing understandings about gender and sexuality. It focusing on feminist socio-legal approaches to law, drawing on case examples from the Feminist Judgments project.
Module will run
Autumn Term 2019-20
The aim of this module is to provide students with a theoretically informed insight into the way in which law, gender and sexuality are mutually constituted. It critically interrogates how gender and sexuality are framed in law, and consider spaces of socio-legal in/exclusions which exist as a consequence of that framing. Changing social constructions of gender and sexuality, and the extent to which law is keeping up with these changes, will also be explored. The gendered subject of law will be examined and students will be supported in thinking critically about the gender profile of law-makers and the gendered nature of legal judgments in the United Kingdom. Cases from the Feminist Judgments project will be analysed and students will be supported in developing their own feminist socio-legal analyses of recent relevant case law.
Module learning outcomes
By the end of the module students should be able to demonstrate:
A critical understanding of how law, gender and sexuality intersect and interact
A critical understanding of the ways that law can be seen as being informed by social and cultural normative constructions of gender and sexuality
A critical appreciation of the main theoretical approaches to analysing gender, sexuality and law and a critical understanding of feminist socio-legal scholarship within this context.
The ability to use primary and secondary literature to develop critical analyses of issues relating to gender, sexuality and law.
The ability to construct arguments orally and in writing and which are supported by appropriate evidence to analyse critically the relationship between law, gender and sexuality.
The ability to undertake independent research on recent case law as part of an assessment of the merits of taking a feminist socio-legal approach to analysing the relationship between law, gender and sexuality.