Gender, Culture and Psychoanalysis

Subject GEND30004 (2014)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2014.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 3 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject is not offered in 2014.

Time Commitment: Contact Hours: A 1-hour lecture and a 1.5-hour tutorial per week.
Total Time Commitment:

Total expec.ted time commitment is 102-hours across the semester, including class time.

Prerequisites: None
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Student Support and Engagement Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Overview, Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support:


Nicholas Chare

Subject Overview:

This subject covers historical and current developments in psychoanalytic approaches to the understanding of sexual difference. The insights psychoanalysis provides about sex and sexuality at both an individual and social level will be considered. You will be provided with a thorough grounding in gender-related psychoanalytic theories that are applicable to the study of culture and society. The subject is divided into two parts. It begins by introducing you to key concepts from thinkers including Joan Copjec, Bracha L. Ettinger, Sigmund Freud, Karen Horney, Luce Irigaray, Melanie Klein, Julia Kristeva, Jacques Lacan, Joan Riviere, and Donald Winnicott. The subject then goes on to examine how many of these concepts have been taken up and used to analyse representations of sexual difference in culture. The works of Barbara Creed, Laura Mulvey, Mignon Nixon, Griselda Pollock, Jacqueline Rose, Hanna Segal, and others, will be investigated in this context and the relevance of ideas about sexual difference from psychoanalysis for the study of art, film and literature will be explored.

Learning Outcomes:

On completion of the subject students should have:

  • the ability to communicate an understanding of key concepts from psychoanalysis;
  • be able to demonstrate various ways in which ideas from psychoanalysis can inform the study of sexual difference and sexuality;
  • the skills and confidence to take the initiative in relating theoretical ideas covered on the subject to culture and society;
  • developed close reading skills in relation to both texts and images.

Close Reading Exercise of 1000 words due in week 6, 25%; Take Home Exam of 2000 words due in the examination period, 50%; research essay of 1000 words due late in the semester, 25%. This subject has a minimum hurdle requirement of 75% attendance and regular participation in tutorials. Assessment submitted late without an approved extension will be penalised at 10% per day. In-class tasks missed without approval will not be marked. All pieces of written work must be submitted to pass this subject.

Prescribed Texts:

A subject reader will be available.

Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

Students who successfully complete this subject will:

  • have learnt to be skilled in critical thinking and analysis;
  • be able to cultivate oral and written communication skills;
  • have developed an understanding of cultural and social contexts;
  • have become skilled at managing time and resources effectively.
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Gender Studies
Gender Studies
Gender Studies Major

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