Monday, January 26, 2009

Certificate Course in Gender and Culture by CSCS


I. Introduction
Module 1: Gender-Culture: Introduction to the Course
Module 2: Knowledge Production / Gender as a Category of Analysis

II. Theorising the Contemporary
Module 3: Public – Private: Gender and Space
Module 4: Body, Sexuality and Identity
Module 5: Gender in Cyberspace

III. Issues of Representation
a) Modules 6, 7, and 8 will focus on Political Representation
Module 6: Contestations of the Public
Module 7: Women’s Movement’s engagement with the Law
Module 8: Reservation – Community, Identity
b) Modules 9 & 10 will focus on issues involving Aesthetic Representation


  1. By RAM BHAT:

    1)Who I am and why have I joined this course:

    I am a engineering student, who quit mid way to join media studies (from Manipal Institute of Communication) and have been interested in the political ever since. I always have believed in trying out my ideas and getting my learnings from the field rather than in the classroom. I have accordingly worked in a NGO for five years. Four years in a media advocacy group, and last year, due to some disenchantments with approaches, I co-founded my own group, which I would not like to call a NGO, but a collective of media practitioners, researchers and artistes, called Maraa (

    I joined this course because somewhere down the line, I realized that there are severe problems with the work I was doing, or was asked to do. I knew there was something wrong intuitively but had no framework to identify the problem, and thus work towards amending those problems. When I started my own group, we tried doing different things, to see if we could achieve different results, and wanted to give more importance to process and more importance to research. However, my love affair with the field work continues to this day, and I didn't want to give this up completely and end up in the classroom full time, even though this may give me answers faster. I prefer this hybrid approach of working on the field and learning in the classroom. So i grabbed the opportunity vis-a-vis CSCS when I realized they were asking similar questions to what I had and am facing presently. It is as if I had approached the logical end of one path, and found another traveler who's starting from this point. So I decided to join in the journey to see where this will lead to.

    Of course, joining the gender and culture course has its reasons specifically as well. I have, at a personal, experiential and professional level, realized the immense problems of functioning in daily life, when one is aware of gendering. Much as I tried to, daily life was a torture, because this gendering and stereotyping is everywhere once one sees it. Then one cannot avoid it, and life becomes a torture. Much later I became aware that this lens of seeing things through gender is not only applicable to men and women but also everything else like politics, work, love, hate, and pretty much everything else. So how to negotiate with this gender became a problem for me. So at first, I thought, "Let me become a feminist, and I will be comfortable from within" But that didn't answer the problems against men, and also there was the question of approach. It is ok to be a feminist, but what is the nuts and bolts of it? Also as I was asking these questions, I was interested in knowing what the academicians are saying about the question. So when this course started, I couldn't resist registering for it. It has been an insightful journey so far, and I look forward to some thoughtful days ahead, on how some of the learnings can be practically applied inside and outside the classroom, to merge seamlessly into our present work and lives.


    I have a few doubts, and I have a few questions, and a few linkages. But
    these are just random thoughts which I had about the discussion and the
    module, put together. I perceive that the module is not done with yet? If
    yes, then I'm profoundly dumb (:D), if not, phew. :) Because I was with Anup
    in whatever he discussed during the session, and I seem to have got atleast
    a bit of the first half of the second module uploaded on the CSCS website.
    But after the mid-point of the module, I was completely lost, mainly, I
    guess, due to my unfamiliarity with the concepts discussed.

    But in the topics discussed so far, I still do not understand how knowledge
    and experience become a binary. The way I see it, experience adds on the the
    knowledge systems (I don't think I'm comfortable enough using the term
    epistemology), and the knowledge system in turn forms the foundation for new
    forms of experience.

    This might be a very superficial, or low, level of understanding, but, for
    example, many of the stereotypes which exist today are because of the
    knowledge systems created by our ancestors, and we ourselves, through our
    experience, are adding on to the knowledge system, strengthening the
    existing stereotypes, and making new ones.

    In this context, how is knowledge-experience a binary?

    Secondly, I got thinking about how feminism got to be tied up with women. I
    was just wondering if feminism was a sexually associated term or a gender
    associated term. I believe its the later. And considering the fact that none
    of us are completely man or woman, ergo we have a bit of both in us, then
    don't 'men' also become stakeholders of feminism, considering the fact that
    he has a bit of she in him? Doesn't this also alter the terms of
    situatedness for men in feminism, from an
    oppressed-by-'culture'/epistemology+oppressor, to an oppressed in terms that
    he has a woman in him? Doesn't he then become equally oppressed as her,
    because there is a she in him? Making both man and women equal stakeholders.

    Maybe I'm jumping a lot here, but taking into consideration the universal
    view of one knowledge, doesn't this make both men and women both equally

    I also do not understand the usage that feminism is the natural home for the
    political. I might have understood, if it was said that the political was
    the natural home for feminism, but the vice versa, I do not understand.

    I also do not get how feminism might be about a re-turn to experientialism.
    As far as I could get from what I read, feminism was initially about the
    political, and another school brought forth the idea of micro involvement.
    When we talk about feminism having an epistemology of its own, how is it a
    return to experientialism, when we are currently already subscribed to the

    Like I said in the beginning of the mail, these thoughts might be very
    immature, and also stupid because of horrible mis-associations and
    misunderstandings. I've been trying to make sense of whatever I read, and
    heard, and discussed, and the way I related to it could be extremely out of
    the picture. I apologise, if this is so. I'm just a beginner, and I hope I'm
    trying to place things...

  2. hi,
    I am Simren Thomas an i am doing my BA in communicative english at christ college.

    I am doing the course for various reasons, one of them being that CSCS has always made me think about things that has just been mentioned in the passing before. Specific to this course, i think gender equality and discrimination talks mainly about women and the problem they have faced, i am here to find where the man comes it. i would like to understand the kind of position that women and man stand in todays society the kind of stereotyping that has its play and if there is a reason behind that. how important is a physical structure to classify a class or gender and if so taking on roles would change that. hence where do we draw the line of distinction and should that hold good to classify or categorise an individual.

  3. Name: Srikeit Tadepalli

    Age: 21

    Educational Background:
    2nd year (4th semester) undergraduate student at Christ University pursuing BA with majors in Communicative English, Literature and Psychology
    Was initially a science student having completed my 12th with PCMB in Ahmedabad and one year of BSc (Biology) before moving to Bangalore to change my stream.
    I have completed the courses in 'Rethinking Media Laws' and 'Introduction to Cultural Studies in my first year en route to receiving my UG Diploma in Cultural Studies in March 2008.

    Motivation to join this course:
    I have been interested in the courses offered by CSCS in Christ University since my first year and have found the discussions therein to be highly stimulating and unlike any other educational discourses I have attended. Although starting at a general discussion point, the classes have quickly but cogently evolved beyond basic arguments to exploring the underlying dialectic of the issue.
    The Gender and Culture course presented itself as an opportunity to understand and explore the problems and issues surrounding the Gender question of which we barely scraped the surface in the 'Introduction to Culture Studies' course. My desire to join was further strengthened when I came to know that several accomplished and renowned intellectuals in the field of Gender and Feminist studies were going to be conducting the course.

    I hope that the information provided above is sufficient. Please feel free to contact me if you need to know anything else. I would like to thank CSCS for conducting this course in such an interactive and feedback-oriented way.

    Srikeit Tadepalli
    UG Student - Department of Media Studies

  4. By Bhavani:
    My name is Bhavani.E.S and I'm doing my II JPEng (2nd year) in Christ......cant speak much about my educational background cuz don't seem to have a fantastic one atleast according to the norms set. I've done my PU in Arts but before that I never went to school so cant speak anything really about it. Which is in fact the reason why I chose this course cuz the very moment one speaks about "gender" and/or "culture" we seem to be dealing with certain prefixed ideas or notions about it and stereotypes have always fascinated me because somehow I never seem to be able to relate to them and in the course of my investigation to understand things around me better I seem to very often fall and get lost only because of these very stereotypes especially gender and culture to be specific so well that's my reason :)