Marxist Feminism and the Family By Leanne, Catherine, Claire and Ruosi
What is Marxist Feminism? • A form of feminism, based on the ideas of Marx. • Combines the concept of patriarchy with the key concepts of Marxism. • Believe that women’s oppression is a symptom of a more fundamental form of oppression. • Women are not oppressed by men or by sexism, but by capitalism itself. • The position of women in the family serves the interests of the economy and the ruling class.
Marxist Feminist’s definition of a family Marxist Feminists define the family as: An institution which allows for inequalities between the sexes and which will continue throughout the generations.
Role of the Family in Society • Marxist Feminists suggest that the nuclear family meets the needs of capitalism for the reproduction and maintenance of class and patriarchal inequality. • It benefits the powerful at the expense of the working class and women. • To be an obstacle to women and to make sure there is male dominance in society.
Basic Theories • The family is patriarchal. • Domestic labour serves the needs of the capitalist economy. • The family has an ideological role. • The family is an obstacle to gender equality in employment.
Criticisms • Women do play an important role in society as they provide a safety valve for the family. • Nowadays there are laws to protect women in the workplace which means that it is impossible for women to be discriminated against. • Men are now becoming more involved in family life such as child caring and house hold chores.