<meta http-equiv="refresh" content="0; URL=noscript.html"> METU | Course Syllabus

Course Objectives

The aim of the course is to create a critical perspective towards the relationship between gender and technology. The question of which gender possesses technological competences and which does not is one of the determinants of this relationship. In terms of technological competences, women and men are unevenly associated with certain roles and despite the findings of the history of technology discipline, men are usually thought to be producers of technology, while women are accepted to be consumers of it.

The social processes that shaped technological development were historically man dominated. Women were excluded from the social and economic opportunities required to become producers of valuable technologies. In addition, machinery, the engine of capitalist production, did not offer equal opportunities to women. In this respect, technology oriented jobs in the engineering discipline were considered as a male profession because their dynamics were based on masculine tradition and empowered by capitalist relations.

This course also has a critical stance towards studies concerning gender in natural science and technological occupations and which use the acronym STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) as an umbrella representation. “The Science” in STEM mainly refers to natural sciences and excludes social sciences. In addition, many studies in related literature use the acronym STEM for those fields where women are severely underrepresented. The term STEM creates and reproduces a dichotomy between natural and social sciences, which originated from the basic dualisms of nature/social, rational/irrational, analytical/emotional and finally men/women. Therefore, students who take this course are expected to analyze and question the interactions of gender, science and technology without taking the relationship involving them as granted.