Gender Studies

Through exploring the lived, embodied experience of ourselves and others, we can learn how to cultivate a compassionate and inclusive society. 

We are in the midst of a new wave of interest in gender. Popular cultural phenomena such as #metoo dominate the media, and flourishing public conversations regarding political representation, sexual and family violence, transgender rights, the legacies of Western feminism, or radicalisation are all engaged with questions of gender (as well as its intersections with other markers of identity).

Meanwhile, workplaces everywhere are under increasing pressure to address unconscious bias and embrace diversity and inclusion.


The stakes are often high, and the debates can sometimes seem toxic and polarising.

But does it have to be this way?

Throughout this interdisciplinary major, you will be challenged to develop enhanced awareness of self and others, and advanced skills in negotiating difference. In doing so, you’ll be invited to practice – in the words of the celebrated feminist scholar bell hooks – a “wise and loving politics” grounded in respect, commitment and compassion. 

Our course

Study Gender Studies 

Our projects

Gender Studies Discipline Chair Dr Chantal Bourgault du Coudray’s current research highlights relational skills in listening and dialogue and experiential learning. The transdisciplinary applications of these skills is evidenced through her research collaborations below. 
Locating Loss from Climate Change in Everyday Places
The Australian Research Council Discovery Project entitled Locating Loss from Climate Change in Everyday Places aims to investigate loss within the contexts of fire, drought and flooding in Western Australia. The project’s innovative approach will reveal how community members in rural and urban places make value trade-offs and decisions over desirable futures. The project’s expected outcomes will provide insights into acceptable and intolerable losses, and grief and hope, in familiar places. The findings will contribute an analysis of community resilience in the face of socio-economic and environmental threats, and inclusive planning for place-based adaptation.
The Australian Cooperative Research Centre on Transformations in Mining Economies
The Australian Cooperative Research Centre on Transformations in Mining Economies project is focused on identifying the opportunities and barriers involved in managing contaminated water associated with disused mines.


Our major is closely affiliated with the Australian Women’s and Gender Studies Association (AWGSA), which is the peak body for gender studies in Australia. UWA periodically hosts the biannual AWGSA conference.

Since 1996, our major has also been home to the feminist journal Outskirts: Feminisms Along the Edge.

We also enjoy a close relationship with UWA’s Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery, particularly on account of its Cruthers Collection of Women’s Art, which we visit with our students whenever we can. Staff associated with Gender Studies have also presented public talks on this and other collections.

Contact Dr Chantal Bourgault du Coudray

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Research repository

Read more about Dr Chantal Bourgault du Coudray

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