Fall 2019

Women as Cold War Weapons

, 4 pts, GU4217


Cold War ideological campaigns for the “hearts and minds” abutted “hot war” confrontations between 1945 and 1991, and women engaged with both. This course has three purposes: (i) to examine the role of women in the United States as a reflection and enactment of Cold War politics; (ii) to provide an understanding of cultural forces in building ideas in foreign markets; (iii) to reframe the understanding of power as a strategy of United States Cold War battles. To this end, the class will open with a history and examination of women and the traditional narratives of the nation at “wars,” and then continue to explore the political power of women, cultural diplomacy, military operations, and conclude with two case studies. This seminar examines the history of government and private sector mechanisms used to export national ideals by and about women in order to enact American foreign policy agendas in the Cold War. To build their knowledge, students will be asked to parse primary materials in the context of secondary readings. They will do class presentations and present at a conference, and will have the opportunity to discuss their interests with leading scholars of the Cold War. The requirements include significant weekly readings, postings, attendance at discussions, a class presentation, and participation in the class conference at the conclusion of the semester.

Section Number
Call Number
Day, Time & Location
R 12:10pm-2:00pm To be announced
Victoria Phillips