Women and Political Change

Disciplines:  Political Science, Women’s Studies

For decades now women’s studies programs have gained popularity and influence at various colleges and universities around the country. These programs examine the ways that women are impacted by gender inequality and address issues that women face as political actors and agents of change. Harold Laswell defines politics as “who gets what, when and how.” It examines those in power as well as those who attempt to change the status quo. Politics helps to give individuals a voice and power. Women are often left without a voice to express their unique needs and concerns. My major, Women and Political Change, focuses on women’s issues from a current and historical perspective. My major also analyzes how government and economic policies impact women.

Empowering women through politics requires knowledge of the structure and process of government. Classes such as Congress and American Government facilitate knowledge about American political institutions and processes. Various political systems are run differently, therefore having different effects on women. A global understanding of world politics enables me to compare and contrast governments and policies in an effort to identify policies and institutions most apt to empower women. Classes such as Latin American Politics, European Politics, Women in World Politics and American Foreign Policy allow for comparisons of governments and the way different political systems empower women.

Among the main inequalities that women face globally are unequal pay and fewer job opportunities. Women rarely hold power and authority within their government to change these policies or express their concerns. Inequality is perpetuated by economic programs that overlook women’s issues and roles in societies. These issues are addressed in courses on Women in World Development and Women and the Economy.

Historically, women have been impacted by governments and their economic policies. A focus on women and political change will allow me to look at how the status and duties of women have changed historically in America and other countries. This knowledge will enable me to see how women can impact the future of political change. American Women’s History, The F Word: Feminism in the United States, American Government, Latin American Politics, European Politics, World Politics and Women in Contemporary American Culture provide a historical foundation leading up to current attitudes of empowering women and the obstacles that women face in their rise to power positions.

After graduating with a B.S. in Interdisciplinary Studies, I plan on working for a humanitarian or non-profit organization that focuses on women’s issues and influences women’s roles in governing and policy making. Eventually, I plan on pursuing a graduate program in women’s studies with an emphasis on political science. My major, Women and Political Change, will help prepare me for these future objectives.

Option One Contract Courses

  • PO 1020 American Government
  • PO 1030 World Politics
  • PO Comparative Government (transfer)
  • PO 3300 Latin American Politics
  • PO 3540 European Politics
  • PO 3590 The Congress
  • PO 3650 American Foreign Policy
  • PO 4010 Political Science Internship
  • HI 2680 American Women’s History
  • IS 3470 Women in Contemporary American Culture
  • PO 3350 Women in World Politics
  • PS 3200 Psychology of Woman
  • SO 3160 Women in World Development
  • WSDI 2500 The F Word: Feminism in the United States
  • WS 3510 Women and Their Environments
  • WS 4010 Women and the Economy