By Caroline Ramazanoglu
Feminism and the Contradictions of Oppression is a penetrating and finished examine of the improvement of feminism over the past thirty years. the 1st a part of this significant new textbook examines feminist conception and feminist political approach. the second one part examines how contradictions of sophistication, race, lifestyle and sexuality divide ladies. the ultimate half explores methods out of the deadlock. This level-headed and hard ebook is without doubt one of the such a lot awesome contributions to feminism lately.
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Additional resources for Feminism and the Contradictions of Oppression
It is this view of patriarchy which has probably attracted the most criticism, because it raises very directly issues of biological reductionism and conceptions of the innate essences of being male and being female. Because this approach is particularly vulnerable to criticism, attacks on this version of patriarchy have often been seen as disposing of the power of radical feminist argument in general. The overgeneral use of patriarchy, however, was politically very effective in drawing women’s attention to the extent of male dominance.
It has led to political divergence in feminist strategies for change (Segal 1987). The impact of marxist feminism (together with black and third-world criticisms which are discussed in chapter 6) was to counter the radical feminist view of women as universally oppressed with a view of women as oppressed in multiple and contradictory ways. The early phase of 1970s marxist feminism was labelled a •marriage’ WHAT IS WRONG WITH FEMINISM? 27 and, not surprisingly, this was seen to be an unhappy marriage (Hartmann 1981; Sargent 1981).
Walby (1986:69) conceives of patriarchy as a mode of production comprising domestic work, paid work, the state, male violence, and sexuality. Gender inequality then has to be explained through the intersection of patriarchy, capitalism and racist structures, in specific areas such as in the use of women’s labour. This is useful in focusing problems of explanation on the historical connections between areas of women’s lives normally seen as separate, but it is not clear how conceiving patriarchy as a mode of production successfully bridges historical and general explanation.