The following is an example syllabus for the book and class: From Outrage to Courage

Anne Firth Murray

Format:  Seminar/workshop

Enrollment:  36-40                     Prerequisite: None                  Grading:  Letter

Monday and Wednesday 11 a.m. to 12:15 in Building XX, Room XX.

Tuesday movie screenings, 8-10 p.m., are in Building XX, Room XX


This course provides an overview of international women’s health issues presented in the context of a woman’s life, beginning in childhood and moving through adolescence, reproductive years, and aging.  The approach to women’s health is broad, taking into account economic, social, and human rights factors and particularly the importance of women’s capacities to have good health and manage their lives in the face of societal pressures and obstacles.  Attention will be given to critical issues of women’s health such as: discrimination against women; poverty; unequal access to education, food, and health care; and violence.  Issues such as maternal mortality, sexually transmitted disease, violence in the home and in conflict and refugee situations, the effects of traditional practices, and sex trafficking will be discussed.


Course materials will draw from a wide variety of sources, including information about women’s organizations outside the U.S.  The class will be interactive.  After the first week, each week will be devoted to a particular phase of a woman’s life and/or a health issue related to that phase, with one session being introductory (often involving guest resource people) and the other being primarily discussion-based, with students leading parts of the discussions.  Each student is required to attend a one-hour small group session each week and occasionally provide a leadership role in a group session.

For some of the weeks during the quarter, a video/film evening will be scheduled for Tuesday evening at 8 p.m.  During the early part of the quarter, students will be invited to the home of the professor, during which we will get to know each other better and share our thoughts and expectations about the class. A short take-home, open-book test will be administered in the seventh or eighth week of the quarter.

Students will be responsible for all materials that are handed out in class and for announcements put on the Coursework website.  These may include: course announcements, changes in the topic or reading schedule, minimal additional reading material, and updated guest information.

The text for the course is: Murray, Anne Firth, From Outrage to Courage: Women Taking Action for Health and Justice, Common Courage Press, 2008 (ISBN-10: 1567513905; ISBN-13: 978-1567513905; $18.75). In addition to the text, articles that appear on Coursework represent the main required reading for the course. Two other books will be on reserve at the library for students’ use: Kim, J. Y., et al, eds., Dying for Growth: Global Inequality and the Health of the Poor, Common Courage Press, 1999, and Mann, Jonathan M., et al, eds., Health and Human Rights: A Reader, Routledge, 1999.  Copies of the text will be on reserve at the library.  Additional materials may be posted on the class website or handed out in class.


  1. To introduce critical health issues affecting women globally (particularly in poorer countries), in terms of their cultural and social contexts, not as a rationale for practices but as a basis for understanding.
  1. To familiarize students with some of the strategies and programs that non-governmental organizations are using to address women’s health issues in poorer countries.
  1. To communicate a sense of personal responsibility, empowerment, and connection with women globally.


Weekend Readings Anytime during the previous week

Attendance/participation in class Every Monday AND Wednesday

Attendance/participation in small groups Every Week, Wed-Sun (Weeks 2-10)

Emailed reading response Saturday by midnight (Weeks 1-9)

One blog post on topic of your choice Thursday by midnight (Weeks 2-9)

Two blog comments on other students’ posts Saturday by midnight (Weeks 2-9)

REQUIREMENTS: throughout Quarter

View all four Tuesday night films, with makeups due within a week of original showing.

Attendance, active participation, and leadership during class and discussions

A take-home, open-book test, due in the eighth week of class

A book review of a supplementary text, due in the sixth week of class

Weekly blog posts and comments from week 2 through week 9.

The last (eighth) blog post should address policy and action relating to the topic of the blog.

REQUIREMENTS: at the end of the Quarter (due March 11,  5pm)

Submit the following to Anne’s mailbox on the first floor of the HumBio office (Building 20)

  1. TWO copies of all blog entries. Include the time and date stamps.
  2. TWO copies of all your blog comments. Include the time and date stamps and the title of the blog entry you were responding to.

Students are expected to complete assignments by the set deadlines.  Points will be deducted appropriately and fairly for any assignments handed in late.

Please read the following information for more details on these requirements.

Book Readings and Responses

Students are expected to attend class and to have read and discussed with others the readings for each session.  Students are expected to be prepared for discussion of the readings and to bring their experiences, leadership capacities, and perspectives to participatory discussions Students should be up to date on the international news relating to women’s health.  Each week, students will attend a small three-person reading group session (an ecology of three).  In addition, students will submit reading responses by email on the reading and topic of the week. These responses should be a minimum of two paragraphs and include reactions to the text, comments, and questions; these responses will be shared with the weekly class speaker and will form the basis for fuller class discussions.  Reading responses should be emailed to the professor and teaching assistant AND posted anonymously on the designated google document by midnight each Saturday via email; the google document links are posted on Coursework under materials. The first reading response is due on Saturday at the end of week 1 (1/8/11); the last reading response is due on the Saturday at the end of week 9 (3/5/11).

Blog project:

Students will create blogs on an international women’s health topic that will start during the second week of class (first blog post is due on 1/13/11; first blog comments are due 1/15/11).  Each student will create one post and write two comments on the posts of their colleagues per week for eight weeks. The posts should be treated as mini-essays — they should be well written and researched (and contain citations); blog posts are generally 1.5-2 pages double-spaced. The blog posts are due on Thursday at midnight; the blog comments are due on Saturday at midnight. PLEASE NOTE THAT: the final blog post, to be submitted during the ninth week of class, will critically analyze the substantive learning from the student’s blog postings over the course of the quarter.  The blog project, including the final critical blog post, will offer opportunities for students to deepen their understanding of a topic or region.  We hope to make extensive use of the web to present projects, share information, and learn from one another. (For examples of blogs, see: and click on the blog message.)

Here are the some general blog topics, offered with the assumption that your specific topic will fall under at least one of these:

1.  Who pays for international women’s health and human rights programs and who implements them?

2.  Globalization and women’s health and human rights:  the role of communications technology.

3.  Globalization and women’s health and human rights: the role of medical technology.

4. Looking at international women’s health and human rights through the lens of particular populations:  disability, sexuality, refugee status, etcetera.

5.  Looking at international women’s health and human rights through an economic lens (i.e., women’s quest for participation in the cash economy).

6.  Mental health in the context of international women’s health and human rights.

7.  Environmental health in the context of international women’s health and human rights.


Class attendance; participation, including a book review and take-home test (35%); blog posts, comments, including final analytical blog post (30%); small group attendance, leadership, and participation; and weekly emails (28%); film attendance (8%).  Students must sign in at each class and reading group discussion and at any other required events. A more detailed breakdown of grading will be posted on Coursework after the class begins.


Week 1:  Introduction

MONDAY, 1/3/11: Warm welcome. Introduction and overview of the subject, rationale, structure, and context for this course; introduction of participants, expectations.  Review:  requirements, website, film/video evenings, and books; syllabus, course reader, and reading lists; clarity about small (3-person) groups and assignments.  Fill in contact sheets.

WEDNESDAY, 1/5/11: Review of course; deciding on composition of the class; names game; creation of ecologies of three; film on women’s rights and/or part of Vienna Tribunal film.

Weekend Reading for Next Week’s Discussions

• Read the syllabus thoroughly to avoid confusion later.

• Read the Contents, Foreword, Prologue, and Chapter 1 of Murray, From Outrage to Courage, and skim through the whole book for ideas about blog topics

• Mann et al, pp. 1-34.

• Kim et al, Foreword and Chapter 1

• Pop. Ref. Bureau 2005 Women of our World data sheet:  view at: http:www//

• CR: National Council for Research on Women, The World’s Women

• CR: Hesperian Foundation: Where Women Have No Doctor, introduction

• CR: Avotri and Walters, “We Women Worry a Lot about our Husbands”

• CR: UNDP Human Development Report: Still an Unequal World: (SKIM)

Assignment for Week 2: On Monday, come to class with a short paragraph (four sentences at the most) describing the subject that you would like to focus on for your blog and final short summary paper project.  Reading the syllabus and skimming the text for the course may provide ideas for blog topics. In your paragraph, refer to the blog category (or categories) your blog will fall under (the list is on page 3 of the syllabus).


Week 2:  Women’s Health and Human Rights

MONDAY, 1/10/11:  Introduction to the course:  Women’s health and human rights.  Review of course, syllabus, reader, reading lists, and requirements.

Guest resource person: Helen Stacy, Stanford Law School, on human rights.

WEDNESDAY, 1/12/11:  Students suggest leading questions for discussion both in class and in the ecologies of three.  One suggested topic for the ecologies is this:  “What human right(s) do you hold most dear?  What would you do to retain that right if it were threatened to be removed?” Names exercise. Decisions about blog topics.

This week’s film/video evening: A Woman’s Place

SUNDAY 1/16/11:  a.m./p.m. for two hours:  meetings at professor’s house for tea and goodies. If you cannot attend the tea, please arrange to meet with the professor during office hours before Week 4 (1/24/11). We may schedule another tea on a subsequent weekend.

Weekend Reading for Next Week’s Discussions

• Read Chapters 2 and 3 of Murray, From Outrage to Courage

• Mann et al, pp. 181-201

• Mann et al, pp. 336-62

• Kim et al, Chapter 3, especially pp. 44-52

• CR: Zainaba (Opening the Gates)

CR:  World Development Report 2000/2001: Attacking Poverty (SKIM)

CR: Rahman/Toubia, Female Genital Mutilation: Guide to Laws and Policies (SKIM)

• CR: Izett and Toubia, Learning about Social Change (SKIM)

• CR: US Dept. of Labor, Forced Labor: the Prostitution of Children (SKIM)


Week 3: Being Born a Girl: Poverty; Access to Education


WEDNESDAY, 1/19/11:

Guest resource person:  Lynn Murphy, Hewlett Foundation, on access and quality of girls’ education globally.  Students suggest questions for discussion and for ecologies of three.

This week’s film/video evening: Secret and Sacred or End the Suffering (both on FGM).

Assignment for Sunday, 1/23/11: Decide which book from the supplementary reading list you plan to read. Fill out the online form with the author and title of the book that you choose.  The supplementary reading report is due during the sixth week of class.

Weekend Reading for Next Week’s Discussions

• Read Chapter 4 of Murray, From Outrage to Courage

• CR: ICRW, The Critical Role of Youth in Global Development

• CR: Nath, Madhu Bala, From Tragedy towards Hope

• CR: Farmer, Women, Poverty, and AIDS

• CR: Alan Guttmacher Institute, Into a New World: Young Women’s…Lives (SKIM)

• Mann et al, pp. 35-45; and SKIM pp. 202-26,

• CR: Gender and AIDS Almanac, UNAIDS, 2001 (SKIM)

• CR:  Garcia Moreno in Visvanathan, Women Are Not Just Transmitters (SKIM)


Week 4:  Adolescence and Vulnerability

MONDAY, 1/24/11: Adolescence: vulnerability, fertility, HIV/AIDS.

Guest resource persons:  Piya Sorcar, Founder and President of TeachAIDS, on teaching AIDS education in Africa and India

WEDNESDAY, 1/26/11: Students lead discussion and suggest topics for discussion by ecologies of three.

This week’s film/video evening: Pandemic or Everyone’s Child

Weekend Reading for Next Week’s Discussions

• Read Chapter 5 of Murray, From Outrage to Courage

• Mann et al., pp. 253-64

• CR:  Measure Policy Brief: Making Pregnancy and Childbirth Safer

• CR:  Petchesky, Spiraling Discourses of Reproductive and Sexual Rights

• CR:  Abeyesekera, Activism for Sexual and Reproductive Rights

• CR: IWHC, Special Challenges:  Cervical Cancer and/or

• CR:  Outlook:  Preventing Cervical Cancer in Low-Resource Settings

• CR:  Eiven, Laura, et al, Lesbians, Health and Human Rights, and/or Mann et al, pp. 265-280  (SKIM)

• CR:  Untold Story: How Health Care System Contrib. to Maternal Mort. (SKIM)

• CR: Merali, Advancing Women’s Repro. and Sexual Health Rights (SKIM)

• CR: Dalsimer, Abuses against Women…and China’s 1-Child Family (SKIM)

• CR:  Alan Guttmacher Inst., Women, Society, and Abortion Worldwide  (SKIM)


Week 5: Reproductive Health, Sexuality, Maternity

MONDAY, 1/31/11:  Womanhood:  sexuality; fertility; maternal health; reproductive health; access to abortion.

Guest resource person: Judy Norsigian, Boston Women’s Health Book Collective: Our Bodies, Ourselves

WEDNESDAY, 2/2/11:  Visit to the class by Martha Campbell, UCBerkeley School of Public Health. Students lead discussion and suggest topics for discussion by ecologies of three:  e.g.  students’ perceptions of right to reproduce.

Weekend Reading for Next Week’s Discussions

• Read Chapter 6 of Murray, From Outrage to Courage

• CR:  Population Reports:  Ending Violence against Women

• CR:  Coomaraswamy, Some Reflections on Violence against Women

• CR:  Garcia and Sayavedro, Violence, Empowerment, and Women’s Health

• CR:  Sen, Subordination and Sexual Control (SKIM)

• CR:  Carillo, Violence against Women: An Obstacle to Development (SKIM)


Week 6: Domestic Violence against Women

MONDAY, 2/7/11:  Womanhood: domestic violence

Guest resource person: Nicole Baran, lecturer on violence against women at Stanford University; founder and leader of the Center for Relationship Abuse.

WEDNESDAY, 2/9/11: Visit with Mukta Sharangpani, an anthropologist, who is a Commissioner on Santa Clara County’s Domestic Violence Council and President of MAITRI, a domestic violence intervention agency (to be confirmed).  Students suggest questions for discussion and for ecologies of three.

Book report due today.

This week’s film/video evening: Tapestries of Hope or Once Were Warriors.

Weekend Reading for Next Week’s Discussions

• Read Chapter 7 of Murray, From Outrage to Courage

• CR:  Rehn and Sirleaf, Women, War and Peace

•CR:  Farha, Contextualizing Violence against Women

• CR: Nikolic-Ristanovic, Women, Violence and War: Wartime Victimization of Refugees in the Balkans

• CR: Swiss, Violence against Women during the Liberian Civil Conflict (SKIM)

• Mann et al, pp. 75-105

• CR: Jang, Domestic Violence in Immigrant and Refugee Community (SKIM)


Week 7:  Women in Conflict and Refugee Situations

MONDAY, 2/14/11: Women in Conflict and Refugee Situations

Guest resource person:  Possible visitor on militarism from UC Davis (to be confirmed)

WEDNESDAY, 2/16/11:  Visit by members of Women’s Earth Alliance on environmental health issues, particularly water.  Students suggest questions for discussion and for ecologies of three. Take-home quiz handed out today.

This week’s film/video evening: Praying the Devil Back to Hell (women in Liberia)

Weekend Reading for Next Week’s Discussions

• Read Chapter 8 of Murray, From Outrage to Courage

• Kim et al, one or more of chapters 4, 5, 6, and/or 7

• CR: State Dept./CIA, Richard, International Trafficking in Women to the US

• Kim et al, Chapter 11 (SKIM)

• CR: UNDP: Valuing Women’s Work (SKIM)

• CR: Altink, Stolen Lives: Trading Women into Sex and Slavery (SKIM)

• CR: Sleightholme and Sinha, Guilty without Trial (SKIM)


Week 8:  Globalization, Women and Work

MONDAY, 2/21/11:  HOLIDAY  Globalization and Women’s Work

WEDNESDAY, 2/23/11: Students suggest questions for discussion and for ecologies of three meetings.

Guest resource person: Staff members from Global Fund for Women, on globalization issues, including trafficking in women.  (to be confirmed)

Take-home quiz due today.

Weekend Reading for Next Week’s Discussions

• Read Chapter 9 of Murray, From Outrage to Courage

• CR: UN, Aging in a Gendered World: Women’s Issues and Identities, Introduction

• CR: International Institute on Aging: BOLD articles

• CR:  Sánchez, Who Cares for the Caregivers?

• CR: Worters and Siegal, The New Ourselves Growing Older


Week 9: Aging and the End of Life

Assignment due March 11 by 5 p.m. to Anne’s box (Bldg. 20, 1st floor):

TWO copies of each of the following documents: all blog entries and blog comments

MONDAY, 2/28/11:  Growing older; menopause; widowhood, poverty; access to services, end of life.

Guest resource persons:  Carol Winograd (to be confirmed) and/or Anne Firth Murray

WEDNESDAY, 3/2/11: Students suggest questions relating to perceptions of aging for class discussion and ecologies of three.

Weekend Reading for Next Week’s Discussions

• Read Chapter 10 of Murray, From Outrage to Courage

• Mann et al: From Concept to Action, pp. 395-452

• Kim et al, chapters 15 and 16

• Additional materials to be provided by individual NGO organizations

• CR: Weaver, Gandhi’s Daughters


Week 10:  Making a Difference and Choosing Priorities

MONDAY, 3/7/11: We talk about strategies to address the issues we have been discussing as well as the challenge of evaluating interventions.  We may have some guest resource people this week, such as: Peter Laugharn from the Firelight Fund or Anasuya Sen Gupta from the Global Fund for Women.  Or we may invite a resource person to talk about evaluating the effectiveness of programs.

WEDNESDAY, 3/9/11: Students suggest questions for discussion, including a discussion of success stories of organizations doing useful work.  We are encouraged to do evaluations on line.  We bid fond farewell.

Assignment due March 11 by 5 p.m. to Anne’s box (Bldg. 20, 1st floor):

TWO copies of each of the following documents: blog entries and blog comments.



• Students with Documented Disabilities

Students who need an academic accommodation based on the impact of a disability must initiate the request with the Student Disability Resource Center (SDRC) located within the Office of Accessible Education (OAE). SDRC staff will evaluate the request with required documentation, recommend reasonable accommodations, and prepare an Accommodation Letter for faculty dated in the current quarter in which the request is being made. Students should contact the SDRC as soon as possible since timely notice is needed to coordinate accommodations. The OAE is located at 563 Salvatierra Walk (phone: 723-1066).

• Honor Code

Please visit and read the honor code website on Coursework:

By now, all of you should know the difference between putting information in “your own words” and merely changing a few words around.  The latter does not demonstrate understanding and will be marked down.  Direct quotes may be used when appropriate.  They should be placed in quotation marks and correctly referenced. Original (not manually entered) time stamps on blog postings are required.

Contact Information for Professor



Office hours by appointment; please sign up on the sheets on the door of my office.

Contact Information for Teaching Assistant



Copyright: Anne Firth Murray, July 2010

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