First Year Program - Lesbian- Gay- Bisexual- Transgender- and Queer Studies Skip Navigation

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer Studies (LGBT)

Director: H. Julien

The minor in Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer Studies (LGBT) examines the lives and representations of individuals and groups considered sexual minorities, as well as the various forces that have affected them across cultures and throughout time. Sexuality offers a critical lens to analyze communities, cultures, and subcultures; institutions, discourses, and literatures; economic and political movements; the social construction of power, status, and hierarchies; and identity categories configured on the basis of age, ability, class, ethnicity, gender, race, and religion. Moreover, sexuality is considered as the subject of biological, medical, and psychological research.

LGBT is an interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary minor that emphasizes the application of new theories and methodologies (e.g., queer, feminist, critical race, and multicultural theories) to established disciplines as it promotes the generation of new knowledge within traditional fields. Through the minor, students gain critical understandings of normative categorization, query unspoken assumptions, examine social stratification and distributions of power, and explore the diversity of forms that sexuality has taken historically and in contemporary contexts. For more information, you may contact the director, Helene Julien (


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LGBT 220, Exploration in LGBTQ Studies
The course explores the lives, experiences, and representations of LGBTQ persons, those who identify or are identified as transgressive in terms of their sexuality and/or gender expression. Particular emphases may vary, but topics typically explore LGBTQ communities and families, cultures, and subcultures; histories, institutions, and literatures; and/or economic and political lives. Selected topics serve to expose complex cultural forces that continue to shape sexuality and regulate its various expressions. The course promotes the examination of new theories and methodologies in relation to established disciplines as it underscores the generation of new knowledge within traditional fields of scholarship. By examining sexualities, students gain an understanding of and respect for other differences in human lives such as age, ability, class, ethnicity, gender, race, and religion.

In Fall 2018, students will engage with Colgate's Bicentennial by examining and exploring LGBTQ activism on college campuses. This emphasis will provide an opportunity to consider Colgate as a case study and to expand knowledge of the institution's history.

WMST 202, Intro to Women's Studies
Explores gender from a variety of angles, and in tandem with race, ethnicity, class, religion, sexuality, and other markers of identity. Students develop vocabulary and tools to speak and think critically about oppression, patriarchy, social change, and common assumptions about the world and people around us. A primary goal is to explore both the forces that feed into inequality and discrimination, and ways to resist, challenge, and overcome those forces. Students explores issues ranging from bodies, work, families, identity, politics, medicine, history, and the media, as well as the ways in which feminist movements around the world have addressed these topics.