This stimulating text presents a concise and accessible introduction to feminist theory today. Covering all the major variants of feminist political thought, it offers a unique examination of the archive of modern feminist theory from the publication of The Feminine Mystique in 1963 to current postmodernist and legal feminist texts. It provides both an intellectual history and a political critique of contemporary feminism in the United States and in the United Kingdom. Judith Evans focuses on the divergence within, as well as between, feminist schools, and on protests from women marginalized by `the movement' - including those who are lesbian and those who are black. Feminist Theory Today contends that the ear
Chapter 2: Equality and Difference in Feminist Thought
Equality and Difference in Feminist Thought
Early second-wave feminism was a feminism of two forms of equality. The first began with the Presidential Commission of 1960, and The Feminine Mystique;1 the second emerged from the 1960s New Left, and that decade's movement for black Civil Rights.2 The first I shall call liberal, the second ‘early radical’. The first begins with a claim of ‘adequate similarity’, that is, of no differences that could justify discrimination on the grounds of sex. Where differences other than the biological at their most basic are said to occur, this school sets out to disprove their existence, or to show that they are the products of socialization by families or schools, or by, for example, medical ...