About the Program
Women’s and Gender Studies is an interdisciplinary program that explores gender and sexual diversity, masculinities and queer studies, practices of representation and cultural production, popular culture, and critical transnational feminisms. Drawing on innovative conceptual frameworks and interdisciplinary methodologies, our undergraduate curriculum addresses intersections of embodiment, identity, community and knowledge politics in arenas that span the intimate and the international. Engaging the everyday worlds that we inherit and inhabit, the program provides critical tools that help students re-imagine more inclusive processes for creative, social and political change.
As of July 1, 2010, Women’s and Gender Studies became the first official program to offer undergraduate programming in the Interdisciplinary Centre, with a view of developing an Interdisciplinary M.A. in the near future. In joining the ICCC, Women’s and Gender Studies has undergone a revision of its current curriculum in order to strengthen and update course offerings and to reflect emergent shifts in the fields of gender and feminist studies, critical race theory, cultural studies, and transnational politics. The largest transformations have taken place in terms of course offerings, with the addition of eight new classes, revisions of five existing courses, and the deletion of eight previously offered courses, now addressed by other courses and programs throughout the University.
Women’s and Gender Studies joined the ICCC with core faculty members, Dr. Lesley Biggs, Dr. Joan Borsa, Dr. Theresa Cowan, and Dr. Marie Lovrod, as Program Coordinator. In addition, the program enters this new phase of development with the invaluable support of many sessional instructors, some of whom have been loyal contributors to the Department and its students for more than fifteen years. After eighteen years with the department, Dr. Diana Relke retired in the spring of 2010, but she remains a Professor Emeritus in Women’s and Gender Studies. In 2016, the ICCC underwent a formal review process and began its transformation into a research unit. With this transition, Women's and Gender Studies will also be evolving into an institute. We look forward to deepening our existing relationships, building new connections with programs and faculty throughout the University, and maintaining our commitment to teaching and research excellence.
About the logo
The WGSt logo combines the symbol for woman with the sun-moon symbol for male-female to mirror the balance we are seeking between women's and gender studies. In its integration of cosmological/planetary and plant imagery, the design also suggests the seamlessness, rather than the constructed opposition of transcendence and immanence, heaven and earth, spiritual and material. These allusions are especially appropriate for an academic program whose interdisciplinary philosophy values the integration of knowledge across disciplinary boundaries.
The logo has been designed and generously donated to the University of Saskatchewan by sculptor Joan Relke. Relke was raised in Moose Jaw and received her education at the University of Regina. She currently lives and works in Australia, with her partner and collaborator, Carl Merten.
Where are they now?
Rachel Loewen Walker
WGST High Honours, M.A. in Philosophy, SSHRC Grant recipient
"While attaining my Women’s & Gender Studies degree, I learned to apply a gendered lens to a range of ideas, historical interpretations and perspectives on society from biology through to science fiction, media and film. My degree provided me with the writing, research and discussion skills to undertake an M.A. in Philosophy, and to continue to hold ideas to a critical standard. I appreciate the mentorship and guidance I received from the department and highly recommend Women's & Gender Studies classes to other students looking for a dynamic and challenging learning experience."
Irena Smith received her B.A. in the International Studies Development Stream from the University of Saskatchewan. Owing to the multidisciplinary nature of Women and Gender Studies, she was able to complete her final honours project and colloquium with Dr. Marie Lovrod in WGST in April of 2014. WGST courses enriched Irena's studies by providing insights into mindful solidarity, transnational activism and intersectional feminism. She is currently completing her M.A. in Women and Gender Studies at the University of Toronto where she plans to research the gendered and racialized nature of precarious labour in Canada and possible sites for intersectional feminist labour organizing.
“While attaining my BA Honours in women’s and gender studies, I learned the importance of reciprocity, reflexivity, and empathy in creating sustainable and accessible scholarship. In sharpening my critical thinking skills, the WGST program has provided me the tools to recognize power structures, my role within them, and how to effectively challenge them. I currently apply these skills in my role as the University Coordinator at Cumberland College.
My academic work focuses on controversy and contradiction in feminist theories and the role of emotions and vulnerability in that work. I hope to pursue this line of inquiry in my career as an academic, beginning with a Master’s degree. I am grateful for the WGST program and the guidance I have received in preparing me for higher education.”
Links & Resources
University and Community Organizations
- USSU Women's Centre
- USSU Pride Centre
- Saskatoon Women’s Community Coalition
- Sexual Health Centre Saskatoon
- Saskatoon Diversity Network
- International Women of Saskatoon
- Elizabeth Fry Society of Saskatoon
- Women's and Gender Studies et Recherches Féministes - WGSRF is the national professional association for the academic discipline of Women's and Gender Studies in Canada. Joining the association indicates both support for and affliliation with the discipline. WGSRF was established in 1984 and have membership across the country.
- Canadian Research Institute for the Advancement of Women (CRIAW/ICREF) - CRIAW/ICREF is a not-for-profit organization that promotes research, which reflects the diverse experiences of women in Canada. Members have access to the online resource centre, information on current and upcoming research projects, and CRIAW’s newsletter. Members also get discounts on publications and conference admissions.
Canadian Feminist Journals/Publications
- Canadian Woman Studies Journal
- Women's Studies International Forum
- Resources for Feminist Research
- n.paradoxa International Feminist Art Journal
- www.feminist.com - An American website for anyone interested in feminist issues, activism, job postings, and events.