Gender, Sexuality and Violence in Palestine/Israel

Module titleGender, Sexuality and Violence in Palestine/Israel
Module codeARA3200
Academic year2019/0
Module staff

Dr Katie Natanel (Convenor)

Duration: Term123
Duration: Weeks


Number students taking module (anticipated)


Description - summary of the module content

Module description

This module takes a critical approach to the study of ‘conflict’ in Palestine/Israel by focusing on the relationship between gender and political violence in the region. We will first problematise the dominant frames of ‘conflict’ and ‘occupation’, looking instead to the model of settler colonialism as a gendered and sexualised practice. We will then explore key themes including nationalism, space, embodiment, everyday life, feminism, queer politics and resistance, which illustrate how gender relations are central to violence in Palestine/Israel. Through engaging with gender as a political and analytical category you will investigate the range of mechanisms that sustain political violence, as well as how individuals and communities practise resistance and imagination.

The course is seminar-based, consisting of short lectures followed by in-depth class discussions and student presentations. No prior knowledge of the subject is required; the module is suitable for interdisciplinary pathways.

Module aims - intentions of the module

This module aims to provide you with the skills of critical gender analysis, which will allow you to explore how settler colonialism and political violence are sustained and subverted in Palestine/Israel. You will learn to analyse how gender roles, relations, codes and norms become central to the production of violence, as well as how women and men experience, understand and resist this violence on individual and collective levels. You are expected to take an active role in creating and leading our learning community. The module encourages politically active learning through discussion of topical events and project-based assessment.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

ILO: Module-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 1. Develop an in-depth understanding of how gender sustains settler colonialism and political violence in Palestine/Israel.
  • 2. Identify and critically assess how gender shapes diverse modes of resistance in Palestine/Israel.

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 3. Analyse and assess academic texts and dominant frameworks (i.e., ‘conflict’ or ‘occupation’) critically.
  • 4. Distinguish between a range of methodological approaches as well as variety of genres, i.e. anthropological and sociological texts, (auto)biographical writings and fiction.
  • 5. Demonstrate an awareness of, and be sensitised to, the various processes by which gender (i.e., femaleness and maleness) is socially constructed and impacts politics.

ILO: Personal and key skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 6. Engage in independent study and group work, including the presentation of material for group discussion
  • 7. Digest, select and organise material to produce, to a deadline, a coherent and cogent argument, developed through the mode of assessment.
  • 8. Critically examine and review existing literature.

Syllabus plan

Syllabus plan

Whilst the module’s precise content may vary from year to year, it is envisaged that the syllabus will cover some or all of the following topics:

Gender, Sexuality & Settler Colonialism

Gendering Political Violence

Nationalism & the Construction of Collective Identities

Borders, Boundaries & the Politics of Space

Displacement & Diaspora

Embodiment: Experiences of Control & Carcerality

The Politics of Everyday Life: Normalcy &‘Getting By’

Feminist Praxis & Women’s Activism

Queer Politics: Pinkwashing & Homonationalism

Resistance: From Ordinary Actions to Popular Protest

Anti-colonial Politics & De-colonial Projects

Toward New Political Futures: Imagination and Cultural Production

Learning and teaching

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled Learning and Teaching Activity22Classroom hours (11 x 2-hour seminars)
Guided Independent Study55Weekly reading 5 hours per week
Guided Independent Study11Class/seminar prep (1 hour per week)
Guided Independent Study30Project (20 hours researching/coordinating, 10 hours writing/preparing presentation)
Guided Independent Study32Essay (20 hours reading, 12 hours writing)


Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Class discussions & student presentationsWeekly1-5Verbal feedback
Project proposal700 words1-6Written & Verbal feedback

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Essay502,000 words1-8Written feedback
Summative project (group or individual)50Written submission of 2000 words OR 15 minute in-class presentation. Submissions may take the form of short reflective essays (for example a film or exhibition review); video or photo essays; podcasts; play scripts; short stories; poetry or spoken word; and/or original artwork with details of your creative process. This list is not exhaustive. Submission format and pathway will be agreed individually with the convenor after review of proposals (mid-term).1-8Written feedback; verbal feedback (if required)


Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
EssayEssay(2,000 words)1-8August/September re-assessment period
ProjectProject materials, including reflective essay of 2000 words; in-class presentations are not possible. 1-8August/September re-assessment period


Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Abdo, Nahla, Women in Israel: Race, Gender and Citizenship, 2011.

Abdo, Nahla and Yuval-Davis, Nira, Unsettling Settler Societies: Articulations of Gender, Race, Ethnicity and Class, 1995.

Boyarin, Daniel, Unheroic Conduct: The Rise of Heterosexuality and the Invention of the Jewish Man, 1997.

Gordon, Neve, Israel’s Occupation, 2008.

Kanaaneh, Rhoda Ann, Birthing the Nation: Strategies of Palestinian Women in Israel, 2002.

Kanaaneh, Rhoda Ann and Nusair, Isis (eds.), Displaced at Home: Ethnicity and Gender among Palestinians in Israel, 2010.

Kuntsman, Adi, Figurations of Violence and Belonging: Queerness, Migranthood and Nationalism in Cyberspace and Beyond, 2009.

Lentin, Ronit, Thinking Palestine, 2008.

McClintock, Anne, Imperial Leather: Race , Gender and Sexuality in the Colonial Conquest, 1995.

Natanel, Katherine, Sustaining Conflict: Apathy and Domination in Israel/Palestine, 2016.

Puar, Jasbir, Terrorist Assemblages: homonationalism in queer times, 2007.

Shalhoub-Kevorkian, Nadera, Militarization and Violence against Women in Conflict Zones in the Middle East: A Palestinian Case Study, 2009.

Sharoni, Simona, Gender and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: The Politics of Women’s Resistance, 1995.

Module has an active ELE page

Indicative learning resources - Other resources

Videos/films, TV programmes, online materials (news sites, blogs, social media), images, podcasts, play scripts, music, memoirs.

Key words search

Gender, sexuality, violence, Palestine, Israel, Middle East

Credit value15
Module ECTS


Module pre-requisites


Module co-requisites


NQF level (module)


Available as distance learning?


Origin date


Last revision date