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Critical Identity Studies

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The Department of Critical Identity Studies seeks to develop students’ understanding of how social identities—like race, gender, sexuality, class, dis/ability, nation, non/religiosity—have formed historically, along with the ways those identities play out in the complex and multicultural worlds in which we now live—and this includes the College's campus!

Combining a variety of academic disciplines (gender and women’s studies, ethnic studies, queer studies, disability studies, postcolonial studies), Critical Identity Studies (CRIS) investigates the ways identities are shaped within structures of inequality and through systems and practices of power and resistance. 

From the introductory course, “Sex and Power,” to the advanced theoretical courses which include “Whiteness,” “Masculinities,” "Gender Bending," "Race and Culture," "Feminism and Politics," "'Black Lives Matter," and “Thinking Queerly,” CRIS courses are always interdisciplinary, intersectional, and oriented toward social justice. As such, Critical Identity Studies emphasizes the importance of communicating across differences as a means to fulfill the College’s mission of empowering students “to lead fulfilling lives marked by high achievement, personal responsibility, and public contribution in a diverse society.”