Women, Law and Society LAW4153

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Law
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

This course facilitates an in-depth study of the relationship between women and law, encompassing both civil and criminal aspects. The focus will be on how women experience and perceive law in its social context and how law might be reimagined to better capture and respond to women's lived experience.  


10 x 2-hour seminars

Requirements of Entry

This course is only available to LLB students (and visiting law students).

Excluded Courses





A summative assignment (4500 words) comprising a feminist rewriting of an existing judgment or statute with a reflective statement worth 100% of final assessment

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable for Honours courses

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. Where, exceptionally, reassessment on Honours courses is required to satisfy professional/accreditation requirements, only the overall course grade achieved at the first attempt will contribute to the Honours classification. For non-Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 

Course Aims

To develop an understanding of how the theory and practice of law is gendered.

To consider evolving legal notions of biological sex and socially constructed gender within broader historical, social and political contexts.

To encourage critical analysis of the ways in which particular areas of law affect and impact on women within a range of theoretical and contextual frameworks.

To analyse the interaction between legal rules and women's lived experiences within specific contexts.

To encourage critical analysis of current civil and criminal law and of proposed reform.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

1. understand the historical development of law's application to women within a range of different areas

2. engage with feminist legal theory which explores how law is gendered in practice

3. identify worked examples of how law operates and applies differently to men and women in practice.

4. analyse primary and secondary legal sources in the light of these approaches

5. develop and articulate their own understanding of the merits of these approaches.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.