WGST 360/HIST 360 (Rev. C1): Gender and Consumer Culture Since 1700 Report a Broken Link

Welcome to Women’s and Gender Studies 360: Gender and Consumer Culture Since 1700. In this course we investigate the emergence of modern consumer society in western Europe and North America. Gender is central to our explorations. Have men and women experienced consumer society differently? What are the relationships among femininity, masculinity, sexuality, and shopping? What have been the experiences of women in the beauty and fashion industries? How have consumers challenged the limits of capitalist commodity distribution? Why do many people living in western Europe, Canada, the United States, and several other countries now view consumption and citizenship as inextricably linked? Through this course’s readings, assignments, and final examination, we develop deep understandings of consumption’s gendered histories. We also develop advanced skills in critical thinking, scholarly writing, and historical research.

Required Readings


Unit 1


Introduction to This Course

Unit 2


Gendering Consumption in the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries

Unit 3


The Rise of Mass Distribution, 1850s to 1930s

Scroll down to page 13 to start the reading.

Unit 4


Performing Gender, Sexuality, Race, and Class, 1870 to 1939

Unit 5


Rise of the Gendered Consumer Citizenry, 1870 to 1945

Unit 6


Postwar Consumer Politics, 1946 to 1960s

Unit 7


Gender and Consumption Since the 1970s