Powers of Horror. Ettinger, The Matrixial Borderspace. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, articles — May Jacques Lacan: A Feminist Introduction. London: Routledge. The Daughter's Seduction: Feminism and Psychoanalysis.
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Detroit: Macmillan Reference, The last decade has seen the number of women's studies PhD programs grow to at least 10 — most of them relatively new. Last week, Indiana University's board approved the creation of a program that will be both similar and different from those the first doctoral program in the United States exclusively in gender studies.
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Social sciences. Outline History Index. We could also include here Katie Roiphe's The Morning After as another example of an articulation of new young feminism that seeks to restore women's status from victim to agent, and positions itself against previous waves of overzealous, 'anti-sex' feminism. What characterises power feminism is the rejection of what is deemed to be the 'victim feminism' of the second wave.
That is, power feminists are concerned that feminism has become too focused on men's power versus women's oppression, and the ways these are played out in the realm of the sexual and the personal. They are concerned about young feminists getting caught up in this interpretation whereas they should see themselves as strong, sexual, and powerful, and should focus on women's individual strengths.
Grrrlpower is generally seen to have originally emerged from a combination of punk and feminism in the early s. It reclaims the word 'girl' and sometimes focuses on young women's anger as a feminist tool.
It sees that many major issues still face young women, especially regarding the body and sexuality. At the same time, it emphasises autonomy, sassiness, and is sometimes depicted as sexy and aggressive. Unlike power feminism, it is committed to a view of the personal sexuality, body image, relationships, the impact of cultural representations as political. However, it seeks to represent young women as angry, in charge and taking action. For example, Flea writes in her zine Thunderpussy , 'Feminism isn't over, it didn't fail, but something new happened- grrrl power.
Next time a bloke feels your arse, patronises you, slags off your body, generally treats you like shit- forget the moral highground, forget he's been instilled with patriarchy and is a victim too, forget rationale and debate. Just deck the bastard'. In a slightly different take on girlpower and DIY, Kathy Bail argues that young women have embraced this form of 'in your face' feminism because they 'don't want to identify with something that sounds dowdy, asexual or shows them to be at a disadvantage.
They don't want to be seen as victims. While I would take issue with some of the rather stereotyped basic assumptions about previous waves of feminism that are held by versions of each of these new young feminisms power feminism in particular , I believe this attempt to reclaim 'power' is worth looking at closely.
In the context of the cultural dichotomisation of girls as either tough or hopeless, choosing the strong and powerful option makes some sense. To blame second wave feminism for emphasising the other is to my mind wrongheaded.
But if generational divide is perceived as partially responsible for the construction of youth as an 'at risk' problem, it is easy to see how older feminists have become implicated. In constructing a new young feminism that is sassy and smart, tough and in control, some young women are attempting to answer back to these images of girls' feminist principles as ingenuous, misguided and self-harming. In the process, however, the oppositional positions of 'powerful girl' versus 'victim' that are currently circulating only become further entrenched.
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The third example of an elaborated 'style' of young feminism includes those who actively embrace the term 'Third Wave' to mark their place as the next 'wave' in the tradition of the previous two women's movements. In this text she proclaims third wave feminism to be more individual, complex and 'imperfect' than previous waves. It is not as strictly defined or all-encompassing as the second wave, less punitive and rigid, especially about personal choices fashion, sexuality , and is keen to avoid easy polarities in identifying forces of oppression in women's lives.
Further, she claims it is more ethnically, sexually and economically diverse. They argue that the Third Wave elaborates and complicates the second wave critique of beauty, sexuality and power, is diverse in its membership, and focuses on the cultural field as a site of feminist activism for example, music, TV, magazines.
As an Australian example, Virginia Trioli's Generation f is consistent with this kind of approach. She identifies this generation as highly pragmatic that is, they implement their feminism in workplaces, law courts, and on the street , and particularly wise about using the law to fight sexism.