Proseminar 1 (3 credits) – required for all doctoral students in the first year of study
Monday/Wednesday 4:20-5:40 pm
Dr. Meredith Bak

The proseminar in Childhood Studies is a year-long investigation into some of the important issues, concepts and debates that surround the study of children and childhood today. We will explore various changing and nuanced definitions of “the child,” ethical dilemmas in working with children, the history of western childhood and global childhoods, race, class gender and sexuality, children’s literature, schooling, the manipulation of images of childhood and the children’s agency in helping to form or to combat those images. Although over the year the course will necessarily bring together multiple perspectives, the first half of the proseminar will focus more closely on disciplines from the Humanities.

Children’s Rights (3 credits)
Thursday 6:00-8:50 pm
Dr. John Wall

This course examines children’s rights from a range of theoretical, practical, historical, cultural, and global perspectives. It asks what it means to speak of children and youth as possessing rights, how children’s rights challenge broader human rights, how children’s rights have changed over time, what key struggles are emerging locally and internationally, how children and youth may participate in such struggles, and how children’s rights face issues of cultural difference, marginalization from power, and practical implementation. Students gain a solid grounding in children’s rights theory and an appreciation for the dilemmas, struggles, and possibilities of children’s rights practices.

Girlhood Studies (3 credits)
Tuesday 6:00-8:50 pm
Dr. Kate Cairns

This course explores key scholarly debates within the field of girlhood studies. Students will engage with multiple disciplinary perspectives to examine historical, cultural, social, and political dynamics shaping the way girlhood is imagined and experienced. The course asks how ‘the girl’ is figured as a site of both promise and peril, inspiring various forms of celebration, regulation, and intervention. Particular attention will be devoted to the relationship between representations of girlhood and the diverse experiences of girls’ lives. We will explore how girls inhabit, rework, and resist notions of girlhood at the intersection of race, class, sexuality and disability.