MA Human Rights - Political Science (Standard Route) / Course details

Year of entry: 2023

Course unit details:
New Developments in Theories of Gender and Sexuality

Course unit fact file
Unit code SOCY60991
Credit rating 15
Unit level FHEQ level 7 – master's degree or fourth year of an integrated master's degree
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Available as a free choice unit? Yes



This course will:

  • Historically situate the political and theoretical movements that have contributed to varying, key ways of thinking about sexed divisions, gender, and sexuality
  • Review key developments in social, political, philosophical, and cultural theories of gender and sexuality, how they intersect and relate to one another, and their political implications through thematic empirical examples
  • Provide students with a solid critical foundation to read media content and everyday situations through the sociological lens informed by academic theories of gender and sexuality
  • Assess the ways in which knowledge and ideas are produced, accounting for the intrinsic link between power and language, and the methodological implications this has for social scientists
  • Encourage students to collectively debate and critically engage with academic and real-world material through seminar group activities


to review several developments in social, political, philosophical, and cultural theories of gender and sexuality
➢ to evaluate the form and structure of theoretical arguments from different disciplinary perspectives
➢ to assess the ways in which ideas are produced and distributed through processes grounded in the material working practices of academia and publishing, including those of reading and writing
➢ to encourage graduate students to exchange ideas and critical responses to theories of gender as members of a seminar group.

Learning outcomes

On completion of this unit, successful students will be able to:
• Discuss and engage with key texts within recent theories on gender and sexuality.
• Place debates around gender and sexuality in their historical and theoretical contexts
In addition, the students will develop and build on:
• critical reading skills
• ability to discuss and engage with texts
• ability to develop coherent, structured arguments

Teaching and learning methods

10 x weekly 2 hr sessions which will be a mixture of lectures and seminars.

Assessment methods

Assessment is by a 3,000 word assessed essay

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Bridget Byrne Unit coordinator

Return to course details