Undergraduate English Courses

358:261 Global Women's Literature: Domestic Labor

01  MW5   CAC    08058   MANGHARAM  MU-114

Global Women's Literature: Domestic Labor

This course will examine how definitions of gender and sexuality are reproduced, negotiated and deployed through literature on domestic work. We will ask: What circumstances constitute women's domestic labor, both paid and unpaid? Global domestic labor? Global women's domestic labor? How are the household, the local, the national, the transnational, and the global articulated and entwined? How is global domestic work valued or devalued? How is caring, for and by care providers, manifested? In this course, we study literature by and about domestic work, housewives and female domestic workers to rethink the material and textual power structures underlying the everyday life we take for granted. Reading will include feminist and economic theory, including Simone de Beauvoir, Betty Friedan, Judith Butler, Marilyn Waring, and Marx, as well as literary texts such as Carol Shields's Unless, Thrity Umrigar's The Space Between Us, Kate Chopin's The Awakening, Gustave Flaubert's Madame Bovary, Bapsi Sidhwa's Cracking India, and Zukiswa Wanner's Maid in SA: 30 Ways to Leave Your Madam. We will also peruse relevant popular culture texts such as blogs and TV shows