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Rosemary Hennessy

In: The SAGE Handbook of Feminist Theory

Chapter 18: Thinking Sex Materially: Marxist, Socialist, and Related Feminist Approaches

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Thinking Sex Materially: Marxist, Socialist, and Related Feminist Approaches
Thinking sex materially: Marxist, socialist, and related feminist approaches
RosemaryHennessy
Introduction

Why does materialism matter for how feminist theory understands sexuality? The simplest answer is that materialism, and specifically the philosophy of historical materialism, aims to explain the world in order to transform it. Feminist approaches to sexuality draw upon materialist perspectives because they share a basic premise: theories of social life that begin with what humans need to survive are best able to foster actions to redress injustice. Historical materialism recognizes that the process of meeting survival needs and intervening in their unjust organization entails relations that are economic, political and cultural. As a historical discourse that is a component of culture, sexuality is an integral feature of ...

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