Accessibility statement

Gender, Sexuality & Inequalities - SOC00001I

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  • Department: Sociology
  • Module co-ordinator: Prof. Celia Kitzinger
  • Credit value: 30 credits
  • Credit level: I
  • Academic year of delivery: 2017-18

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching cycle
A Autumn Term 2017-18 to Summer Term 2017-18

Module aims

Many contemporary societies tend to divide people into discrete categories on the basis of sexual difference. We often hear how men and women are more naturally suited to different tasks, behaviours and roles and this has, historically, placed certain limits on what people are allowed or feel able to do. However when we look historically and cross culturally, different societies have had different ways of categorising people on the basis of their genitals, sexual practices or the way they present themselves. This module explores theory and research on gender and sexualities and other social inequalities as fundamental to social order. We will problematize the concepts of sex and gender, which are often taken as a natural hierarchically structured binary division between people. We will explore the social construction of gender and sexuality through the lens of key social institutions (e.g. sport, the media, health, law and employment).

Module learning outcomes

By the end of the module students will be able to:

  • Distinguish between different ways of understanding sex and gender
  • Demonstrate how expectations around gender are dependent on social, cultural and historical factors
  • Challenge the idea of inequalities as determined by biologically hardwired differences
  • Indicate how gender, sex and sexuality are intersected by other forms of social inequalities
  • Question issues of structure and agency in relation to peoples decisions about their bodies


Task Length % of module mark
N/A 40
University - closed examination
Gender, Sexuality & Inequalities
3 hours 60

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
University - closed examination
Gender, Sexuality & Inequalities Reassessment Exam
3 hours 100

Module feedback

As in the First Year, you will continue to receive feedback on your formative assessments via the meetings with your supervisor at the beginning of term. It remains important to attend these meetings with the relevant documentation. However, you will ALSO receive extended feedback on the summative assessment work submitted in this second stage of your degree.

Because all of your summative work is examined by at least two members of the Department, and much of it will also be considered by the external examiners, there is an obvious conflict between the time that this takes and our desire to get feedback to you in useful format as swiftly as possible. For this reason, we will release the marks and the feedback forms to you as soon as they have been agreed internally that is, within the Department and before the external examiners have approved them. This means that we can get the feedback to you at least a fortnight earlier than would otherwise be the case but it also means that the marks for each module may change depending on the decisions of the external examiners, although this is rare.

You should note that, due to the fact that all submissions are second-marked and examined by multiple members of the academic staff, there is no appeal against the marks given.

Essays and other coursework: Detailed feedback for your essays will be found on the feedback forms you receive and through comments written on the work itself. These forms rate your performance according to essay content, organisation and style, using the benchmarks provided by the Departments published marking criteria. They will comment further and in detail about any specific strengths and weaknesses, and will provide suggestions as to how you might improve your work in future. You should make an appointment to see your supervisor to discuss these forms and it may be helpful to take with you a copy of the written work that you submitted. If further clarification is required, this may in consultation with your supervisor be sought from one of the examiners.

Examinations: Feedback for examinations will normally take the form of the mark received for the examination. The Department will, however, also make your scripts available to you for inspection.

Indicative reading

  • Bhattacharyya, G. (2002) Sexuality and Society. London: Routledge
  • Connell, R. (2009) Gender. 2nd ed. London: Polity
  • Connell, R. (2000) Masculinities 2nd ed. London: Polity
  • Fausto- Sterling, A. (2012) Sex/Gender. Biology in a Social World. Routledge
  • Fine, C. (2011) Delusions of Gender. London: Icon
  • Fuller, L.K. (2006) Sport, Rhetoric & Gender: Historical Perspectives and Media Representations. New York: Palgrave McMillan
  • Holmes, M. (2007) What is Gender? London: Sage
  • Johnson. P. (2012) Homosexuality and the European Court of Human Rights. London: Routledge
  • Rahman, M. and Jackson, S. (2010) Gender and Sexuality: Sociological Approaches. Cambridge: Polity Press
  • Richardson, D. (2007) Introducing Gender and Women's Studies. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.