IMPORTANT: Students are only able to enroll in one online course per semester at the Umbra Institute. A University of Mississippi transcript will be provided as part of the cost and more information can be found clicking here.
It is the responsibility of the student to ensure that credit will be offered at their home university for this course.
This online course offered by the University of Mississippi in cooperation with the Umbra Institute and is designed to provide an introduction to the connection between gender and poverty that is otherwise known as the ‘feminization of poverty.’ Note: This course carries a supplemental program fee.
This course will examine the correlations between social, economic, and political consequences, and how poverty is not recognized. It will also look at the privilege that being wealthy and male provides. This course will study the unspoken assumption that caring for the home and children are a woman’s responsibility and how a change in female/male role expectations could help resolve many of these issues. Theory and political action, particularly as they relate to the issues of race and ethnicity, will be emphasized. Students will both read the works of women writers in this field and also examine their own communities to analyze the ways in which the individual, community values, and how systems of power play a key role in further keeping women and children in poverty. Students will also learn to formulate responses and interpretations using varied strategies (e.g., critical reading, online self-reflection, comparative analysis). Other social issues will be examined, such as population, the wage gap, health care and religion.
Course Objectives (include but are not limited to):
- Be able to understand more fully the connections between theoretical concepts and peoples lived experience in relation to the feminization of poverty: The personal is political is a statement closely associated with women and poverty. Many of the readings for this course will illustrate a strong correlation between social, economic and political consequences and how poverty is not recognized. Required learning activities also explore this connection.
- Be able to recognize the intersection of gender and the environment: Gender — the social-cultural elaboration of sexual difference — shapes identities, defines behavioral expectations, and frames individual possibilities. Since gender constantly interacts with other cultural-social constructs such as race and class, one cannot accurately speak of men-in-general or women-in-general. Many of the readings and learning activities of the course deal with this intersection.
- Improve critical thinking skills: The readings and the written assignments for this course are designed to prompt you to think about women, children and the ‘feminization of poverty.’ Critical does not mean to criticize, but to question based on reason and evidence.
For detailed information and syllabus please visit:
Flat Broke With Children: Women in the Age of Welfare Reform. Susan Hays (2004) ISBN-13: 978-0195176018
For Crying Out Loud: Women’s Poverty in the United States. Diane Dujon and Ann Withorn (1996) ISBN-13: 978-0896085299
Wages of Empire: Neoliberal Policies, Repression, Women’s Poverty, by Amalia Cabezas; Ellen Reese; Marguerite Waller (2007) ISBN-13: 978-1594513480
Women, Work, and Poverty: Women-Centered Research for Policy Change. Heidi Hartmann (2006) ISBN-13: 978-0789032461
Women and Work-Volume 6: Exploring Race, Ethnicity and Class. Elizabeth Higginbotham and Dr. Mary Romero (1997) ISBN-13: 978-0803950597