Women's and Gender Studies Karen Summers
Instructor of English
Dr. Karen Summers claims Charleston, SC, as her hometown, but has lived in several towns in both North and South Carolina, as well as nine years in Tokyo, Japan. She started college at Appalachian State but graduated from Salem College with a BA in English and History. Summers received her MA from UNC-Charlotte, and her PhD from UNC-Greensboro.
“My affinity for Women’s and Gender Studies began with my first class in grad school, which focused on medieval women,” Dr. Summers explains. “So often, texts involving women are told about them, rather than by them, even today; it’s fascinating to read about women’s perceptions of themselves and their places in the world in their own words. I’m especially interested in the Constance saga and other tales of castaway queens, and in the ways that women both subvert and uphold cultural norms in medieval stories. As time goes by, the relevance of these tales to our own culture becomes more and more evident, because they serve as a lens through which we can gain different views of ourselves.” Dr. Summers has developed the course WGS/ENG 2000: Medieval Women, which will be offered for the first time in the fall of 2013.