Joshua Whitaker

Graduation year:

2013

Majors/Minors:

English, Gender Studies, Irish Studies

Story:

I took the introductory course at the beginning of sophomore year and picked up the major soon after. I focused mainly on literature courses. It offered a theoretical/critical background that worked in conjunction with my English major that is often about getting as much primary material read as possible. I could become well-read in feminist and queer discourses and bring that to bear on classes all my other classes and fall back on that when it came time for final papers and theses. In addition, some of the most interesting classes I took were in gender studies, like Gender and Irish Theatre, Monstrous Mothers, and Video Games and the Gendered Role.

The academic experience is indispensable, but the best part of gender studies is the faculty. It's small enough to offer that concentrated, personal attention but large enough for a variety of classes and funding for research and internships. The professors are passionate about their subjects. Classes are usually seminar style and students interested in gender are usually so wonderful to engage in conversation with, bringing views from such diverse fields and involved in all kinds of extracurriculars.

The Gender Studies Program is one of my favorite things about Notre Dame.