Children, Gender, and Sexuality, 7.5 credits

Barn, genus och sexualitet, 7.5 hp


Main field of study

Child Studies

Course level

Second cycle

Course type

Programme course


Mats Andrén

Course coordinator

Rebecka Tiefenbacher

Director of studies or equivalent

Mats Andrén, Judith Lind
ECV = Elective / Compulsory / Voluntary
Course offered for Semester Weeks Language Campus ECV
F7MCH Child Studies, Master´s Programme 3 (Autumn 2023) 202349-202403 English Linköping, Valla C

Main field of study

Child Studies

Course level

Second cycle

Advancement level


Course offered for

  • Master´s Programme in Child Studies

Entry requirements

  • Bachelor's degree equivalent to a Swedish Kandidatexamen within the humanities, social sciences or the behavioral sciences with a major relevant to the programme. 
    Examples of fields:
    - anthropology
    - education
    - history
    - communication studies
    - media studies
    - language studies
    - psychology
    - social work
    - sociology
    - political science
    or equivalent
  • English corresponding to the level of English in Swedish upper secondary education (Engelska 6)
    Exemption from Swedish
  • 45 ECTS credits passed from the first year of the programme

Intended learning outcomes

After completion of the course, the student should on an advanced level be able to:

  • discuss the differences between different theories concerning children, gender and sexuality
  • analyze how notions and ideals of children, gender and sexuality are constructed in various social and cultural contexts
  • problematize the relationships between the concepts children, gender and sexuality
  • critically discuss and analyze how gender and sexuality are made relevant in relation to children

Course content

In the course theories concerning children, gender and sexuality are covered that serve to illuminate the relationship between these concepts, historically as well as today.

In the course it is further studied how children’s gender and sexuality are dependent upon the social and cultural context. Furthermore, in the course the ways in which notions on gender and sexuality find expression in the everyday life of children, such as for example in the media and in school, are addressed.

Teaching and working methods

The teaching in this course is carried out online and consists of lectures, online discussions, feedback between students, and production of an individual portfolio. In addition, the student will engage in independent studies of the course literature.

Language of instruction and examination: English.


Examinations in the course consist of:

• individual written assignment, grading scale: EC

More detailed information is available in the study guide.

If special circumstances prevail, and if it is possible with consideration of the nature of the compulsory component, the examiner may decide to replace the compulsory component with another equivalent component.

If the LiU coordinator for students with disabilities has granted a student the right to an adapted examination for a written examination in an examination hall, the student has the right to it.

If the coordinator has recommended for the student an adapted examination or alternative form of examination, the examiner may grant this if the examiner assesses that it is possible, based on consideration of the course objectives.

An examiner may also decide that an adapted examination or alternative form of examination if the examiner assessed that special circumstances prevail, and the examiner assesses that it is possible while maintaining the objectives of the course.

Students failing an exam covering either the entire course or part of the course twice are entitled to have a new examiner appointed for the reexamination.

Students who have passed an examination may not retake it in order to improve their grades.



Other information

Planning and implementation of a course must take its starting point in the wording of the syllabus. The course evaluation included in each course must therefore take up the question how well the course agrees with the syllabus. 

The course is conducted in such a way that there are equal opportunities with regard to sex, transgender identity or expression, ethnicity, religion or other belief, disability, sexual orientation and age.

If special circumstances prevail, the vice-chancellor may in a special decision specify the preconditions for temporary deviations from this course syllabus, and delegate the right to take such decisions.


Institutionen för Tema
Code Name Scope Grading scale
EXAM Examination 7.5 credits EC

Regulary literature


Butler, Judith, (2006) Gender trouble : feminism and the subversion of identity. New York : Routledge, 2006

ISBN: 9780203824979, 9780203902752, 0203902750, 1283442086, 9781283442084, 9780415389556, 0415389550

8-34. Taylor and Francis “Subjects of Sex/Gender/Desire”

Fass, Paula S., (2004) Encyclopedia of children and childhood in history and society. New York : Macmillan Reference USA, cop. 2004.

ISBN: 0028659155, 9780028659152, 0028657144

377-380 Gorham D Gendering

743-751 Bailey B Sexuality

Fausto-Sterling, Anne, 1944-, Fausto-Sterling, Anne, 1944-, (2000) Sexing the body: gender politics and the construction of sexuality

ISBN: 9780465077137, 9780465077144, 0465077137, 0465077145


78-115 “Should there be only two sexes?”

Ghattas, D. C., (2013) Human Rights Between the Sexes; A preliminary study on the life situations of inter* individuals Publication Series on Democracy Vol. 34. Heinrich Böll Stiftung, Lokay: Reinheim. p. 10-30.
Hawkes G.L & Egan R.D, (2008) Developing the sexual child Journal of Historical Sociology 21(4): 443-465.
Rahman, Momin, Verfasser, Jackson, Stevi, Verfasser, (2010) Gender and sexuality : sociological approaches

ISBN: 9780745633763, 9780745633770, 0745633765, 0745633773


Renold E, (2013) Children, sexuality and body cultures. Boys and girls speak out: A qualitative study of children’s gender and sexual cultures (age 10-12). Cardiff University, 38-74.


Renold, Emma, (2005) Girls, boys and junior sexualities : exploring children's gender and sexual relations in the primary school. London ; New York : Routledge, 2005

ISBN: 0415314968, 0415314976

Taylor & Francis, chapter “Boys ‘doing’ masculinity: Mission impossible?”, 66-93.

Renold, Emma, Ringrose, Jessica, Egan, R. Danielle, (2015) Children, sexuality and sexualization. Basingstoke Palgrave Macmillan, 2015

ISBN: 9781137353382

123-140 Anna Sparrman Seeing (with) the ‘sexy’ body: Young children’s visual enactment of sexuality.

Robinson, Kerry H., (2013) Innocence, knowledge, and the construction of childhood. the contradictory nature of sexuality and censorship in children's contemporary lives. 1st ed. London ; New York, NY : Routledge, 2013

ISBN: 9781283871914, 9780203117538, 9781136304163, 9781136304170, 9781136304125, 9780415607636, 9780415609678, 0415609674

87-110 Children’s sexual subjectivities

Weeks, Jeffrey, 1945-, (2003) Sexuality

ISBN: 9780415282857, 9780415282864, 0415282853, 0415282861

The languages of sex, 1-10.

Zeiler K & Wickström A, (2009) Why do ‘we’ perform surgery on newborn intersexed children?: The phenomenology of the parental experience of having a child with intersex anatomies Feminist Theory 10(3): 359-377.


De Ridder, S., Van Bauwel, S., The discursive construction of gay teenagers in times of mediatization: youth's reflections on intimate storytelling, queer shame and realness in popular social media places Journal of Youth Studies (Journal of Youth Studies, 3 July 2015, 18(6):777-793)
Ehrensaft, D., "Look, Mom, I'm a Boy-Don't Tell Anyone I Was a Girl" Journal of LGBT Youth (Journal of LGBT Youth, January 2013, 10(1-2):9-28)
Evaldsson, A.-C., Throwing like a girl? Situating gender differences in physicality across game contexts Childhood 10(4): 475-497
Fine, Cordelia, Rush, Emma, "Why Does all the Girls have to Buy Pink Stuff?" The Ethics and Science of the Gendered Toy Marketing Debate Journal of Business Ethics, 149(4): 769-784.
Hammack, Phillip L., Hughes, Sam D., Atwood, Julianne M., Cohen, Elliot M., Clark, Richard C., Gender and Sexual Identity in Adolescence: A Mixed-Methods Study of Labeling in Diverse Community Settings. Journal of Adolescent Research Mar2022, Vol. 37 Issue 2, p167-220. 54p.
Kassay, Réka, Barbie princesses and Star Wars clones: gender stereotypes in the representation of children's favourite heroes—a participant study in urban and rural contexts, among Hungarians from Romania Feminist Media Studies, 19(5): 684-701
Reich, Stephanie, Black, Rebecca, Foliaki, Tammie, Constructing Difference: Lego® Set Narratives Promote Stereotypic Gender Roles and Play Sex Roles 79(5-6): 285-298
Sparrman, Anna, Access and Gatekeeping in Researching Children's Sexuality: Mess in Ethics and Methods. Sexuality & Culture Jun2014, Vol. 18 Issue 2, p291-309. 19p.
Taefi, Nura, The Synthesis of Age and Gender: Intersectionality, International Human Rights Law and the Marginalisation of the Girl-Child. International Journal of Children's Rights Jul2009, Vol. 17 Issue 3, p345-376. 32p.
Young, Iris Marion, Throwing like a Girl: A Phenomenology of Feminine Body Comportment Motility and Spatiality Human Studies 3: 137-156

Additional literature


Martello-Gill, Susan, (2019) The experience of being a parent of a transgender adolescent.

ISBN: 9781392176290, 04194217

Martino W.J & Cumming-Potvin W, (2015) Teaching about ‘‘Princess Boys’’ or not: The case of one male elementary school teacher and the polemics of gender expression and embodiment Men and Masculinities 18(1): 79-99. Men and Masculinities


Meadow, T., 'Deep down where the music plays': How parents account for childhood gender variance Sexualities (Sexualities, December 2011, 14(6):725-747)

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