Download Generations: Academic Feminists in Dialogue by Devoney Looser PDF

By Devoney Looser

In universities and schools around the kingdom, feminists are debating their histories and destiny legacies. a few older, moment wave feminists accuse more youthful ones of being overly theoretical, insufficiently political, and never thankful adequate to prior generations. a few 3rd wave feminists ponder their foremothers naive or elitist, envious of deviations from their demonstrated plans and improperly wielding their strength. Generations addresses those divisions via analyses of the demanding situations of "passing the torch".

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These deserve to be further theorized now, even if they are ultimately cast out of our critical vocabulary. As with the flurry of media attention to Generation X, it is likely that the outlining of feminist generations serves to caricature diverse feminist interests and practices. Should we discuss feminist generations knowing that we are walking on the thin ice of stereotypes? I think we must. Not to examine “feminist generation” out of a concern for its theoretical instability and violence as a category does little to address the effects of the category.

It perpetuates stereotypes of both older and younger feminists in ways that I find representative and ultimately damaging. For Sprengnether, ’70s feminists are presented as the peacemakers. ” They are the ones who “made it happen,” who “allowed” feminism to “flourish,” whose “collaboration” and “mutual assistance” must serve as models for “long-term” strategies. They are the transformers, the challengers, the ones whom we should really seek to emulate and hold in awe. They had the “genuine,” unpatriarchal career goals.

Then there is the question of whether lesbian/gay studies should be constituted as a separate entity from women’s studies and of how much those studies compete with women’s studies. As the university itself comes under attack, and as political forces having little to do with feminisms directly are changing the university, demanding that it become economically self-sufficient in many cases, so faculty are being forced to rethink disciplinary organization not primarily from the point of view of what the best organization of knowledge would be, but of downsizing, efficiency.

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