Anthropology 224: Ethnography of Gender in Latin America
Department of Anthropology, SUNY Geneseo
Class Meetings: Wednesday and Friday, 11:30-12:45 Fraser 119
Instructor: Dr. James Aimers
Office: Sturges Hall 13H
Office Hours: Tues/Wed 12:45-1:30
Please visit me if you have any questions regarding the content or organization of the course, or for other reasons related to your academic progress. My office hours are:
Tuesday 12:45- 1:30 pm
Wednesday 12:45- 1:30 pm
You can also meet with me by e-mailing for an appointment 2-3 days in advance.
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Questions I can answer in three sentences or so can be e-
mailed, but please speak to me for more complex questions and problems. I read e-mail as often as possible but please allow 1-2 days for a response, not including weekends and holidays. Please include ANTH 224 and a topic in the subject line and sign your message.
Office Phone: 245-5276
Technical and computer-related problems, MyCourses etc: Call the CIT helpdesk is 245-5588
A comparative review of gender and sexuality in Mexico, Central America, and South America. Emphasis on patterns of male and female behavior and their social, economic, and political consequences.
In this course students will demonstrate
Besides fulfilling your multi-cultural graduation requirements, this course also fulfills one course in the social science general education requirements. The guidelines for a social science core course stress the development of the following characteristics of a responsible member of society:
(1) an acquaintance with major empirical, analytical, or theoretical approaches to human behavior, institutions or culture;
(2) an acquaintance with social, economic, political, or moral alternatives;
(3) an acquaintance with major problems, issues, institutions, practices or trends in the social world;
(4) a capacity to express ideas clearly, coherently and grammatically in written form as one component of the evaluation process. This written work must total at least 1500 words, at least half of which must be prepared outside of class.
SUNY Geneseo will make reasonable accommodations for persons with documented physical, emotional or learning disabilities. Students should consult with the Director in the Office of Disability Services (Tabitha Buggie-Hunt, 105D Erwin, email@example.com) and their individual faculty regarding any needed accommodations as early as possible in the semester.
Required Books and Other Readings
Gutmann, M. C.
2007 The Meanings of Macho: Being a Man in Mexico City. University of California Press, Berkeley.
McClusky, L. J.
2001 "Here Our Culture is Hard" Stories of Domestic Violence from a Mayan Community in Belize. University of Texas Press, Austin.
Other Required readings are available in my Outbox. (ANTHà Aimers folder) https://boxes.geneseo.edu/
Help on accessing Outboxes: https://wiki.geneseo.edu/display/cit/In+and+Out+Boxes
Value of Course Components:
In-class reading tests (normally Wednesdays) 25%
Participation (you will record this) 10%
Gender in the News (200 words/student) 10%
Annotated Bibliography entry (400 words) 15 %
Group Wiki Project (500 words/student) 20%
Final exam (all course material)(400-word written section) 20%
A = 94% +
A - = 90 - 93.99 %
B+ = 87 – 89.99 %
B = 83 – 86.99 %
B - = 80 – 82.99 %
C+ = 77 - 79.99 %
C = 73 – 76.99 %
C - = 68 – 72.99 %
D = 58 – 67.99 %
E = 0 – 57.99 %
See MyCourses -> Course Materials for a document that describes my grading criteria (e.g., what kind of work receives a grade of A).
Geneseo Undergraduate Bulletin : Final grades are recorded as A, A- (excellent); B+, B, B- (very good); C+, C (satisfactory);C- (minimal competence); D (marginal); E (failure); F (failure in courses elected under the pass-fail option which are not completed successfully); P (pass in courses elected under the pass-fail option which are completed successfully; P is equivalent to a grade of C- or higher); S (satisfactory is equivalent to a grade of C- or higher); U (unsatisfactory); and W (withdrawn).
Assignments, Attendance and Lateness
Regular attendance is the easiest way to ensure success on this course. Please arrive on time.
Late assignments will be penalized 5% per day, including weekends.
Make-up tests and exams are available only under extraordinary circumstances, and will require medical or other documentation.
Gender and Sexuality Wiki
You will post most of your writing to the Genseo Gender and Sexuality wiki. To find the Gender and Sexuality Wiki, go to the Geneseo wiki: https://wiki.geneseo.edu:8443/dashboard.action Login at the top right of screen (with your usual ID and password), then scroll down the left side of the screen. You can also login through MyGeneseo.
Library Research Help
I strongly encourage you to use the Milne Reference Librarians for assistance with your research for this class. You can speak with the reference librarian on duty between 10am and closing time most days (ask for help at the service desk) or chat with a librarian online by clicking the "IM a Librarian" button on the library website (http://www.geneseo.edu/library). You can also contact the Milne Librarian dedicated to Anthropology, Kim Hoffman, by emailing her (firstname.lastname@example.org) or requesting an in-person meeting (http://bit.ly/milneresearchconsultation).
Most weeks there will be an in-class, multiple-choice, online test. You should bring an internet enabled laptop to every class. I will drop the lowest two scores when calculating the final grade.
Annotated Bibliography Entry
You will contribute a 400-word entry to the Annotated Bibliography on the Gender and Sexuality Wiki, and each week several students will be responsible for discussing their entries in class. You will be required to find a scholarly or peer-reviewed work that has not already been annotated on the wiki. An easy way to find a scholarly or peer-reviewed source is to read one of the existing entries and chose one of the sources cited. The work you choose must be of substantial length and my not be a book review or other short work. You should attach a digital copy of the original work to your wiki entry. The entry should be more than just a summary of the reading. It will be graded for clarity/ organization and critical thought. You can also use links to key concepts on our wiki. to external websites, and to related readings on the wiki . Create your entries here: https://wiki.geneseo.edu/display/gender/Latin+American+Sources
Gender in the News
What issues relating to gender or sexuality (or both) have been newsworthy in Latin America recently? Each student will present a short (maximum) 5 minute presentation on what they find. A short (maximum 200 words) written description should be posted the wiki by noon Tuesday. Your presentation should make use of anthropological perspectives or concepts. Please explore the Key Concepts and Annotated Bibliography sections of the wiki and I encourage you to link to existing wiki content. Outstanding (A-grade) projects will contextualize the story by using concepts drawn from the course and other scholarly studies of gender/sexuality. You may also chose to contextualize the story with reference to other anthropological concepts (e.g., ethnicity, globalization) as long as the news item has a strong connection to gender/sexuality.
Group Wiki: Gender Analysis of a Cultural “text”
The class will be divided into small groups (probably 3 students each). Each group should choose some sort of non-ethnographic “text” relating to Latin America. This could be a novel, a play, or film, or even a Spanish-language television series (from Latin America). Conduct an analysis of the piece using concepts covered in the course, with specific references to course content and other sources. The entry should average about 500 words per student but should read as one coherent entry. Groups should chose a work that has NOT already bane analyzed in this class (see previous entries here: https://wiki.geneseo.edu/display/gender/ANTH+224+Gender+Analysis+Projects) The entry will be graded on coherence (it should read as one integrated piece of writing despite multiple authors), effective use of concepts from the course readings, and the quality of additional scholarly research. Draft due in Week 7, final version posted to wiki at the end of Week 13.
Students are urged to read the policies on Academic Honesty at:
As the policy notes, “Any one of the following constitutes evidence of plagiarism:
I also consider reusing your own work from another class to be plagiarism. I take academic honesty very seriously and I will follow up on instances of cheating and plagiarism to the fullest extent that the university allows. If I believe the offense is very serious, I can—and will—recommend suspension or dismissal to the Student Conduct Committee.
Topics and Readings
You are responsible for each week’s readings and you should be prepared to discuss them. I will take questions at any time during the lectures. Please feel free to raise your hand at any time.
Week 1: January 22 and 24
Introduction: Anthropology and Gender
Introductions and formation of groups. Scholarly and peer-reviewed sources, American Antiquity style (referencing and citation), Gender and Sexuality wiki, plagiarism.
Plagiarism Quiz (in MyCourses àCourse Materials). There is an online quiz on plagiarism due by 11:55 pm Sunday January 26 This is required but it is non-graded. I will not accept written work from you until you have completed the plagiarism quiz.
Kottak, Conrad Phillip
2010 Chapter 2, Culture. In Mirror for Humanity, 6th Edition, pp. 23-45. McGraw-Hill, Boston.
Kottak, Conrad Phillip
2010 Chapter 8, Gender. In Mirror for Humanity, 6th Edition, pp. 167-189. McGraw-Hill, Boston.
Week 2: January 29 and 31
Introduction and Key Concepts: Sex, Gender, and Sexuality PART I
2003a Chapter 1, Introduction: Gender in a Changing Continent. In Gender in Latin America, edited by S. Chant and N. Craske, pp. 1-18. Rutgers University Press, New Brunswick, NJ.
2003b Chapter 10, Conclusion: Looking to the Future. In Gender in Latin America, edited by S. Chant and N. Craske, pp. 254-260. Rutgers University Press, New Brunswick, NJ.
Week 3: February 5 and 7
Introduction and Key Concepts: Sex, Gender, and Sexuality PART 2
Murray, S. O. and M. Arboleda G.
1995 Stigma Transformation and Relexification. In Latin American Male Homosexualities, edited by S. O. Murray, pp. 138-144. University of New Mexico Press, Albuquerque.
French, W. E. and K. E. Bliss
2007 Introduction: Gender, Sexuality, and Power in Latin America since Independence. In Gender, Sexuality, and Power in Latin America Since Independence, edited by W. E. French and K. E. Bliss, pp. 1-30. Rowman and Littlefield, New York.
Week 4: February 12 and 14
Introduction and Key Concepts: Sex, Gender, and Sexuality PART 3
Chant, S. and N. Craske
2003 Chapter 6, Gender and Sexuality. In Gender in Latin America, edited by S. Chant and N. Craske, pp. 128-160. Rutgers University Press, New Brunswick.
2002 An Initial Glimpse of Mexican Sexualities: The Historical Context. In The Night Is Young: Sexuality in Mexico in the Time of Aids, pp. 13-29. University of Chicago Press, Chicago.
Week 5: February 19 and 21
Gutmann, M. C.
2003 Introduction: Discarding Manly Dichotomies in Latin America. In Changing Men and Masculinities in Latin America, pp. 1-26. Duke University Press, Durham.
2007a Introduction: Gender Conventions and Chapter 1: Real Mexican Machos are Born to Die. In The Meanings of Macho: Being a Man in Mexico City, pp. 1-32. University of California Press, Berkeley.
2007b The Invasion of Santo Domingo. In The Meanings of Macho: Being a Man in Mexico City, pp. 33-49. University of California Press, Berkeley. Note: You can skim this chapter; it is not essential to the course but serves as background to Gutmann’s ethnography.
Week 6: February 26 and 28
Gutmann, M. C.
2007a Imaginary Fathers, Genuine Fathers. In The Meanings of Macho: Being a Man in Mexico City, pp. 50-88. University of California Press, Berkeley.
2007b Motherly Presumptions and Presumptuous Mothers. In The Meanings of Macho: Being a Man in Mexico City, pp. 89-110. University of California Press, Berkeley.
2007c Men’s Sex. In The Meanings of Macho: Being a Man in Mexico City, pp. 111-145. University of California Press, Berkeley.
2007d Diapers and Dishes, Words and Deeds. In The Meanings of Macho: Being a Man in Mexico City, pp. 146-172. University of California Press, Berkeley
Week 7: March 5 and 7
First draft of group wiki assignment is due on Wednesday by 8 am.. Each group should have chosen a “text” and should provide a paragraph about how the wiki will be organized.
Gutmann, M. C.
2007a Degendering Alcohol. In The Meanings of Macho: Being a Man in Mexico City, pp. 173-195. University of California Press, Berkeley.
2007b Fear and Loathing in Male Violence. In The Meanings of Macho: Being a Man in Mexico City, pp. 196-220. University of California Press, Berkeley.
2007c Machismo. In The Meanings of Macho: Being a Man in Mexico City, pp. 221-242. University of California Press, Berkeley.
2007d Creative Contradictions. In The Meanings of Macho: Being a Man in Mexico City, pp. 243-264. University of California Press, Berkeley.
Week 8: March 12 and 14
McClusky (2001) Introduction
McClusky (2001) Chapter 1: The Field Site and Fieldwork
McClusky (2001) Chapter 2: Laziness and Work
SPRING BREAK March 17- 21
Week 9: March 26 and 28
Lagarde y de los Rios, M.
2010 Preface: Feminist Keys for Understanding Femicide. In Terrorizing Women : Femicide in the Americas, edited by R.-L. Fregoso and C. Bejarano, pp. xi-xxv. Duke University Press, Durham.
McClusky (2001) Chapter 3: Another Legitimate Beating
McClusky (2001) Chapter 4: Daughters
Week 10: April 2 and 4
McClusky (2001) Chapter 5: “When We Go to High School, We Change”
McClusky (2001) Chapter 6: Traveling Spirits
McClusky (2001) Summary and Discussion; Epilogue: Milling Data
Week 11: April 9 and 11 I will be at a conference in North Carolina this week. Complete the readings and do the online test on your own. This test will be “open book” but timed.
Queer Studies 1
Green, J. N. and F. E. Babb
2002 Introduction (Special Issue on Gender and Same-Sex Desire in Latin America). Latin American Perspectives 29(2):3-23.
2001 The Complicated Terrain of Latin American Homosexuality. Hispanic American Historical Review 81(3/4):689-729.
Week 12: April 16 and 18
Queer Studies 2
2002 Introduction to Part 1: Sexual Identities and I Am Normal: Gender-Based Categories of Sexual Identity In The Night Is Young: Sexuality in Mexico in the Time of Aids, pp. 31-59. University of Chicago Press, Chicago. (Note that these have been scanned as two separate documents)
2002 Sexualities and Genders in Zapotec Oaxaca. Latin American Perspectives 29(2):41-59.
Week 13: Wed April 23 and Friday April 25 I will attend the Society for American Archaeology Meeting in Austin TX.
Week 14: April 30 and May 1 Friday is the last day of class
Queer Studies 3
Group projects were due on the wiki by 5 pm Friday April 25 (the end of LAST week)
1989 Sexual Witchcraft, Colonialism, and Women's Powers: Views from the Mexican Inquisition. In Sexuality and Marriage in Colonial Latin America, edited by A. Lavrin, pp. 178-206. University of Nebraska Press, Lincoln.
Chaves, M. E.
2000 Slave Women's Strategies for Freedom and the Late Spanish Colonial State. In Hidden Histories of Gender and the State in Latin America, edited by E. Dore and M. Molyneux, pp. 108-126. Duke University Press, Durham.
Final Exam (all course material): Friday May 9 2014, 12-3 pm in regular room