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Ideological Poles of the Women’s Movement

Ideological Poles of the Women’s Movement

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Ideological Poles of the Women’s Movement

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  1. Ideological Poles of the Women’s Movement • Liberal (minimalist, enlightenment) believes that women and men are alike in most important respects and, thus, should have the same opportunities, rights, etc. • Cultural (maximalist, structural) believes that women and men are different and promote women’s traits and values such as peace, nurturance, cooperation, respect for nature, etc. ** Usually essentialist

  2. Liberal men and women same and equal in all important aspects 1848 Seneca Falls convention women’s Rights First Wave

  3. Seneca Falls Convention, 1848

  4. Liberal men and women same and equal in all important aspects 1848 Seneca Falls convention women’s Rights Cultural “Cult of Domesticity”“True Womanhood”“Angel in the House Separate spheres, roles, nature for the sexes First Wave • Predominantly white • Connected with other social movements: abolition, temperance, etc.

  5. 1920 – Women’s Suffrage Movement Achieves Right to Vote

  6. Passing of the First Wave • Both sides of the movement were needed to win the right to vote (1920) • Single aim of movement left it without focus once that aim had been achieved • Women achieved a great deal, especially during the two world wars.(flappers, Rosie the Riveter)

  7. Two Flappers and Rosie

  8. Continuum of Second Wave Feminisms Liberal Cultural Revalorists Womanists Mainstream Ecofeminism Power Feminism Radical Feminism Lesbian Feminism

  9. Mainstream Feminism(1960s - ) • Betty Friedan, Gloria Steinem • Backlash of 50s had trapped middle class white women in domestic sphereResponse: The Feminine Mystique • NOW (1966) National Organization for Women • Highly organized: works within the system to secure political, professional, and educational equity. • Key issues: ERA, equal employment legislation and enforcement, pro-choice activism, rape and domestic abuse awareness and education.

  10. Power Feminism(1990s - ) • Naomi Wolf, Katie Roiphe, Camille Paglia • Praise the successes of liberal feminism • Reject its “victim” discourse • To be empowered, women need to take the power themselves socially, politically, professionally; stop making excuses and whining.

  11. Radical Feminism(mostly 1960s - 70s) • Came out of “New Left” student movements • Consciousness raising groups • Believe that our society requires a more fundamental transformation if women are to achieve equality.

  12. Lesbian Feminists(1960s - ) • You can’t truly be free if you’re sleeping with the enemy • Organized to fight discrimination in insurance, housing, property rights, custody • Privilege the sharing, supportive community of women • Usually radical and/or separatist

  13. Womanists(1970s - ) • Alice Walker, bell hooks • Critical of white middle class bias of mainstream feminism. • Address specific concerns of African American Women • Often seek to recover experiences of their African American foremothers

  14. Revalorists(1960s - ) • Carol Gilligan, Helene Cixous • Committed to valuing traditionally feminine skills, activities, and perspectives: peace, nurturing, patience, compromise, collaboration, teaching, etc. • Not necessarily essentialist • Actively re-cover historical women and their contributions to cultural life.

  15. Ecofeminists(1970s - ) • Francois d’Eaubonne, Luce Irigaray • Connect oppression of women with desire to dominate nature • Against oppression in all forms • Emphasize interdependence of all life • Potential for common ground between men and women in resisting oppression and destruction of the environment

  16. Third Wave Feminism • Inclusive of diverse people • Focus more on practice than theory • Work to improve relationships between women and men

  17. Free Men(1990s - ) • Blame feminism for robbing men of their masculinity • Seek to reclaim men’s traditional roles as unquestioned authorities and heads of families • Denigrate pro-feminist men • Rebel against “meal-ticket” role • Father’s rights

  18. Mythopoetics(1980s – 90s mostly) • Emphasize back-to-nature retreats • Believes men in modern western world have been separated from the deep, mythic roots of masculinity • father hunger • Seek to help men rediscover the DISTINCTLY MALE MODE OF FEELING--unlike what male feminists seek

  19. Promise Keepers(1990s - ) • Bill McCartney • Claim men have become irresponsible, abandoning homes, chasing careers, lying, being unfaithful. • Seven Promises (p. 93, Gendered Lives) • Financially support conservative political causes.

  20. Million Man March(1990s - ) • Seeks to unite black men • Spiritual transformation and political action • Support activism in churches and communities • Encourage recommitment to wives and families

  21. Million Man March

  22. Other Mens Movements • NOMAS and Profeminist men’s groups • Gay Rights organizations

  23. The Masculinity Crisis? • Part backlash – reaction to so much attention being paid to girls and women’s experiences • Part a recognition that patriarchy is toxic to men as well as women • Other Responses: • Informal men’s groups meeting to discuss issues that they face as men • Traitorous identity