HIS31290 Gender, Sexuality and Family in Ireland, 1870s-1970s

Academic Year 2020/2021

*** Not available in the academic year indicated above ***

This course will explore the role of gender, sexuality and the family in Ireland from the 1870s to the 1970s with a particular focus on how gender roles, sexual expression and regulation and family power evolved during the period. The family was hugely affected by emigration, economic stringency, changing moral, sexual and welfare ideologies and developing notions of individualism and modernity. This course seeks to elucidate these main debates and examine how they impacted on men and women, the expression and understanding of sexuality, gender relations and gender conditioning and the position of the family in Ireland. What were the main changes in women’s lives during the twentieth century? Was men’s role equally important in shaping the family and the framing of social and welfare legislation? How was female and male sexuality constructed, perceived and lived? How did cultural understandings of sex and sexual morality impact on the regulation of sexuality in Ireland? Was there an effective women’s movement in Ireland?

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

On completion of this module students should: a.) understand the meaning of gender in an historical context and how gender conditioning impacted on men and women, the relationship between the sexes and the family during this period, b.) be aware of the political, economic, cultural and social context in which the roles of men and women were defined, c.) understand the key historical arguments in relation to gender and the position of the family in Ireland between the 1870s and 1970s, d.) have developed skills in dealing with primary and secondary sources, e.) have worked and learned with others through discussion and presentation, f.) have developed study, writing and communication skills appropriate to level 3.

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours


Seminar (or Webinar)


Specified Learning Activities


Autonomous Student Learning




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
This is a small-group, seminar-based module. It is taught through a one-hour weekly lecture and a two-hour seminar. The weekly lecture provides an overview of the week’s topic, focusing upon key historical trends, debates and events. The weekly seminar is focused upon individual active / task-based learning by means of class debates, discussion and student presentations. Advanced research, writing and citation skills are developed through an individual student presentation, a written document analysis, and a semester-long 4,000 word research project. Autonomous learning is advanced through student-led debate and discussion each week. 
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations

Not applicable to this module.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
HIS20600 - Gender, Sexuality, Family, HIS31720 - Irish Emigration, 1800-2012

Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade
Essay: Document analysis essay (1,500 word) Week 6 n/a Graded No


Continuous Assessment: contribution; presentation Throughout the Trimester n/a Graded No


Essay: 4,000 essay Week 12 n/a Graded No


Carry forward of passed components
Resit In Terminal Exam
Autumn No
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, on an activity or draft prior to summative assessment
• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Feedback on the 1,500 word Document analysis will be given in writing on the returned hard-copy. Feedback will be provided on an ongoing basis on preparatory plans for end-of-semester Research Project Assignments. Feedback on the end-of-semester Research Project Assignment will be given by appointment in one-to-one meetings.

Timetabling information is displayed only for guidance purposes, relates to the current Academic Year only and is subject to change.


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