Feminist Theories

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  • Created by: Megan
  • Created on: 12-05-15 12:59
What type of theory is feminism?
Conflict - The conflict is between genders
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What two things can feminism be described as and why?
A theory of women's subordination and a political movement. Because it tries to describe, explain and change the position of women in society.
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What are liberal feminists concerned with?
The human and civil rights and freedoms of the individual. They believe all humans should have equal rights.
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How doe Liberal feminists believe women can achieve gender equality?
Through reformism. Laws and policies against sex discrimination in employment and education can secure equal opportunities for women
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What two things do liberal feminists distinguish between?
Sex and Gender
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According to liberal feminists what does sex refer to?
biological differences between males and females
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According to liberal feminists what does gender refer to?
culturally constructed differences between the masculine and feminine roles and identities that are assigned to males and females
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What do liberal feminists seek to promote?
appropriate role models in education and the family - e.g. female teachers in traditional male subjects. over time they believe such actions will produce cultural change and gender equality will become the norm.
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What are the two main beliefs in liberal feminism?
1)Changes in socialisation and culture will gradually leas to more rational attitudes to gender 2)Introducing anti-discriminatory laws will help bring about a fairer society
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What can liberal feminism be seen as a critique of?
Parsons' instrumental and expressive roles. Liberals argue men and women are equally capable of performing roles in both spheres, and traditional gender roles prevent people from living a fulfilling life.
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Why do radical and marxist feminists criticise liberal feminists?
They aregue liberal feminism fails to recognise the underlying causes of womens subordination, and it is naive to believe changes in the law will bring about equality
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What 3 main claims do radical feminists make?
1)Patriarchy is universal 2)Patriarchy is the primary form of social inequality and conflict 3)All men oppress all women
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According to radical feminists what do all relationships involve?
Power and they are political when one individual tries to dominate another. Personal relationships are therefore political because men try to dominate women
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What do radical feminists focus on?
the ways in which patriarchal power is exercised through personal relationships, often through sexual/physical violence
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What 3 solutions do radical feminists suggest to transforming personal relationships in order for women to be free?
1)Separatism 2)Conscious raising - women come together to see that others face the same oppression 3)Political lesbianism - lesbianism is the only non oppressive form of sexuality
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Give a criticism of Radical feminism
It neglects women's violence against men, and violence in lesbian relationships
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What do Marxist feminists see the main source of women's oppression to be?
Capitalism. Women's subordination in capitalist society results from their primary role as unpaid homemaker, which places them in an economically dependent position in the family.
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According to marxists, what 4 functions does women's subordination provide for capitalism ?
1)Women are a source of cheap, exploitable labour 2)Women are a reserve army of labour 3)Women reproduce the labour force 4)Women absorb anger
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What does BARRETT argue helps to keep women subordinated ?
The ideology of familism
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Marx. What is 'The ideology of familism'?
It presents the nuclear family and its sexual division of labour as normal. The family is portreyed as the only place where women can attain fulfillment.
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Give a criticism of Marxist feminism
unpaid domestic labour may benefit capitalism, but it doesnt explain why it is women and not men that perform it
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What doe difference feminists argue?
M/C, W/C, white and black women, lesbian and hetrosexual women have very different experiences of patriarchy, capitalism, racist etc.
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What is essentialism ?
The idea that all women share the same fundamental 'essence' and thus have the same experiences of oppression
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What do Difference Feminists ague essentialism leads to ?
a failure to reflect the diversity of womens experiences. the preoccupation of western feminism with sexuality ignores that women in poorer countries have more pressing problems e.g. finding clean water
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Card 2

Front

What two things can feminism be described as and why?

Back

A theory of women's subordination and a political movement. Because it tries to describe, explain and change the position of women in society.

Card 3

Front

What are liberal feminists concerned with?

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

How doe Liberal feminists believe women can achieve gender equality?

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

What two things do liberal feminists distinguish between?

Back

Preview of the front of card 5
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