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Social Class and Inequality Studies

The minor in Social Class and Inequality Studies is the nation's first degree program focused on social class.  Launched in fall 2019, this interdisciplinary minor brings together courses in Women's and Gender Studies and from across the LSA curriculum that address social class as an analytic category and explore the intersections of class with race, gender, and other dimensions of social structure.

Required and elective courses taken together will provide a strong, interdisciplinary understanding of how social class has operated in past cultures, as well as how it operates in the present in the U.S. and elsewhere.


This minor requires students to take five courses totalling at least 15 credits. Students are encouraged to consult with a department advisor for additional information, and should consult the worksheet for minor requirements when planning their program.

Prerequisites, none

Minimum Credits: 15

Foundational Course

WGS/SOC 216 — Thinking Class: Inequality in Media, Bodies, Environment, and More
or SOC 242 — The Experience of Social Class in College and the Community


Electives: Four electives (12 credits) from a list of approved courses. Of the total 15 credits, at least six credits must be taken in Women's and Gender Studies. At least two courses must be at the 300 level or above, with at least one at the 400 level.

 Courses in Women's and Gender Studies

  • WGS 216:  Thinking Class: Inequality in Media, Bodies, Environment, & More
  • WGS 220:  Perspectives in Women's Health
  • WGS 250:  Race, Gender and Nation
  • WGS / PSYCH 297: Promoting Equity and Inclusion in the Academy and the Workplace
  • WGS / PSYCH 309: Psychology of Social Change: Gender and Global Feminism

·         WGS / ENGLISH 314: Gender and Sexuality Studies in Literature, section titled "Narratives of Girlhood"

·         WGS / ENGLISH 315: Women and Literature, section titled, "Working-Class Women's Literature"

·         WGS 319: Race, Class, and Women's Reproductive Health

·         WGS 331: Feminist Theoretical Perspectives in Gender and Health

·         WGS 335: Gender and Globalization

·         WGS / AAS / HISTORY 337: Black Women in the U.S., Part II: Contemporary Perspective in the 20th and 21st Centuries

·         WGS / AAS 365:  Global Perspectives on Gender, Health, and Reproduction

·         WGS 374: Race, Gender and Incarceration

·         WGS / PSYCH 394: Sex, Sexuality and Public Policy

·         WGS 410 - Reproductive Justice: Legal and Ethical Issues

·         WGS/AMCULT 411 - Rednecks, Queers, and Country Music

·         WGS/ANTHRO 428 - Sex Panics in the UK and the US


·         WGS/ANTHRO 446 - Sex and the City: Urban Geography and Sexual Locations

·         WGS 417 - Race, Gender, & Mental Health in the 19th Century

·         WGS 443 - Pedagogy of Empowerment: Activism in Race, Gender, and Health

Courses in Other Departments

·         AAS 347 / HISTORY 329 / RCSSCI 343 / SOC 335: Urban Inequality in America

·         AAS 453: Culture, Class, and Conflict in Southern Africa

·         ALA / PSYCH / SOC 218: Foundations of Intergroup Relations

·         AMCULT / HISTORY 440: American Thought and Culture Since 1940

·         AMCULT / SOC 221: Social Inequality

·         ASIAN 383: Wealth and Poverty in Korea: What it means to be rich (or not) in Korea

·         ECON 325: Economics of Education

·         ECON 320: Survey of Labor Economics

·         ENGLISH 290: Themes in Language and Literature, section titled: "Working Class Literature"

·         ENGLISH 317: Literature and Culture, section titled: "Rust Belt Literature" or "Inside-Out Prison Exchange"

·         ENGLISH 384: Caribbean Literature, section titled "Caribbean Women Writers"

·         ENGLISH 390: Literature and Culture, section titled "The Theory Mess"

·         ENGLISH 450: Studies in Medieval and Renaissance Literature, section titled: "Medieval Rebels"

·         ENVIRON 222 - Introduction to Environmental Justice

·         HISTORY 282: A History of the Economy

·         HISTORY 445: Topics in History, sections titled: "Capitalism and Socialism" or "What is Capitalism?"

·         MEMS 220: Knights, Peasants, and Bandits

·         ORGSTUDY 495: Special Topics in Organizational Studies, section titled: "Organizations and Inequality: Race, Class, and Gender in Education"

·         POLSCI 332: The Politics of America's Economic Inequality

·         RCSSCI 360: Social Science Junior Seminar, section titled "Labor Movements, Inequality and Democracy"

·         RCSSCI 365: Excellence, Equity, and the Politics of Education

·         SOC 233: Social Problems

·         SOC 242: The Experience of Social Class in College and the Community

·         SOC 305: Sociological Theory

·         SOC 315: Economic Sociology

·         SOC 495: Topics in Sociology, section titled: "Inequality in Education"

·         SOC 503: The Sociology of Race, Ethnicity, and Immigration

·         SOC 595 - Topics in Sociology, sections titled: "Social Stratification" or "Stable and Integrated Housing for America's Working Poor"

Minor Specific Course Advising


At least 10 credits in the minor must be elected in-residence: Courses elected on the Ann Arbor campus or at off-campus sites directed by Ann Arbor faculty. This includes STDABRD, Camp Davis, Biological Station, Michigan-in-Washington.

Grade Policies

All courses in the minor in Social Class and Inequality Studies must be completed with a C- or above.