At no point in recorded history has there been an absence of intense, and heated, discussion about the subject of how to conduct relations between women and men. This Handbook provides a comprehensive guide to these omnipresent issues and debates, mapping the present and future of thinking about feminist theory.
The chapters gathered here present the state of the art in scholarship in the field, covering: Epistemology and marginality; Literary, visual and cultural representations; Sexuality; Macro and microeconomics of gender; Conflict and peace.
The most important consensus in this volume is that a central organizing tenet of feminism is its willingness to examine the ways in which gender and relations between women and men have been (and are) organized. The authors bring a shared commitment to the critical appraisal of gender relations, as well as a recognition that to think ‘theoretically’ is not to detach concerns from lived experience but to extend the possibilities of understanding.
With this focus on theory and theorizing about the world in which we live, this Handbook asks us, across all disciplines and situations, to abandon our taken-for-granted assumptions about the world and interrogate both the origin and the implications of our ideas about gender relations and feminism.
It is an essential reference work for advanced students and academics not only of feminist theory, but of gender and sexuality across the humanities and social sciences.
Chapter 1: Feminist Epistemology and the Politics of Knowledge: Questions of Marginality
Feminist Epistemology and the Politics of Knowledge: Questions of Marginality
Epistemology was a late-comer to feminist analysis and critique. Although various explanations for its tardiness might be advanced, central among them must surely be the intransigence of a conviction that, while ethics and politics might well be shaped by gender relations and other human ‘differences’, knowledge worthy of the (honorific) title must transcend all such specificities. Thus, although feminist ethical and political theory were rapidly growing areas of inquiry during the 1960s and 1970s, only in the 1980s was a set of questions and proposals articulated to address the possibility that there could, after all, be so seemingly oxymoronic an area of inquiry as feminist epistemology. ...