Feminist Studies at UC Santa Barbara

The Department of Feminist Studies is the locus of feminist, decolonial, transnational, and queer and trans research and teaching at UC Santa Barbara.  With twelve core faculty, 50 affiliated faculty members, and a robust PhD program, the department is among the largest gender studies units in UC system and a national hub for research in transfeminist studies, Black feminisms, and the study of sexual practices, cultures, and economies. 
Our mission is to produce crucial and timely feminist research by working on topics that—like gender itself—are subject to mainstream misrepresentation, panic, surveillance, erasure, and criminalization. These topics include pornography, sex work, Blackness, fatness, disability, immigration, intimate forms of labor, and trans rights. To increase our impact, many of our faculty produce public-facing research aimed at challenging short-sighted or one-dimensional views of gendered crises around the globe.  Our work illuminates the central role of feminist research in any meaningful efforts to build a just and sustainable future. As we grow, we are committed to building on our extant strengths and well as expanding into the Department’s undeveloped and/or emergent areas, such as Indigenous, Latinx, and environmental justice feminisms.    
A unique strength of Feminist Studies at UCSB is our faculty’s commitment to a fresh curriculum that employs creative feminist, queer, and women-of-color pedagogies that prepare students to be thought leaders and change makers. Our students learn to approach uncertain futures and global challenges with critical new ideas. As a part of UCSB’s broader community, we are also dedicated to serving as an incubator and resource for feminist scholars at UCSB by working in partnership and solidarity with Ethnic Studies departments, the Women's Center, LGBTQ Center, Center for Feminist Futures, and justice-focused organizations on campus and in the community. 
We believe that feminist studies and queer studies are disciplines of praxis, having emerged in dynamic relationship with global feminist and LGBTQ movements. Many of our faculty and students are or have been activists, organizers, and cultural producers engaged in movements for social justice. This commitment to gender and sexual self-determination has only intensified in light of recent attacks on gender studies curricula, gender-affirming healthcare, reproductive healthcare, and the very concepts of diversity and inclusion themselves.  We stand in joint struggle with feminists around the globe engaged in the vital work of resisting gender-based oppression and the imagining future otherwise.  We welcome you to join us!


Department Solidarity Statement with UAW Local 4811

The UCSB Department of Feminist Studies, The Orfalea Center & The Center for Feminist Futures
invite you to a double-feature event

The faculty in the Department of Feminist Studies are unflinching lovers of freedom and proud members of the collectives at UCSB fighting for Palestinian liberation and an end to the genocide in Gaza.  While the University of California has responded to this organizing with numerous attacks on free speech and right to assembly, UCSB students and faculty have demonstrated that the urgency of the unfolding genocide in Palestine and the strength of our movement are greater than these tactics to silence us.