790-349 - Political Science 790:349 Topics in American...

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1 Political Science 790:349 Topics in American Politics: Women in Congress Mon. and Wed., 4:30 – 5:50 Prof. Irwin N. Gertzog 212 Murray Hall email: gertzog@rci.rutgers.edu Spring Term, 2009 Office Hours: Wed., 11:00-12:30, and by arrangement, Room 11A, lower level, Milledoler Hall This course will begin with a discussion of the United States Congress as a gendered institution. We will next look at the factors influencing the election of women to Congress – factors affecting 1) their decision to run for office, 2) their acquisition of strategic resources; 3) their degree of success in gaining major party nominations; 4) the nature of the campaigns they undertake, and 5) their fate in the general election. Analysis of how congresswomen are integrated into the workings of the institution they serve will follow. Topics include their adaptation to the committee system, the party leadership structure, House and Senate routine procedures, and the demands of interest groups, especially groups claiming to represent American women. We will then examine the nature and extent of congresswomen’s efforts to promote public policies calculated to benefit women. Emphasis will be on policies falling under the general headings of equal rights, social welfare, and reproductive rights, with attention given to efforts congresswomen have made to shape legislation addressing these concerns. The course will conclude with a discussion of the future of women in Congress. Books containing the assigned reading are listed below. They are available in the Ferren Mall College Book Store. Karen O’Connor (ed.), WOMEN AND CONGRESS: RUNNING, WINNING AND RULING, 2001; Cindy Simon Rosenthal (ed.) WOMEN TRANSFORMING CONGRESS, 2002. Four examinations are scheduled during the term, including the one administered during finals week. The exams are of equal value, i.e., each is valued at 25% of the grade for the course. Numerical equivalents of letter grades are as follows: 90-100 = A; 88-89 = B+; 80-87 = B; 78-79 = C+; 70-77 = C; 60-69 = D; and 0-59 = F. Class attendance is
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790-349 - Political Science 790:349 Topics in American...

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