Postmodern Feminism


Terms in this set (...)

Intellectual Influences
1) Contemporary Women's Movement — AKA "Third Wave Feminism"...
- The sex industry is about power and control, focus on working conditions; Shifts the argument, the sex industry can be exploitative or empowering but it depends on who is in control/power and how the industry is set up; Argue for a case to case basis; Had different views of the sex industry

2) French Theory...
- Deconstruct; Argue that they want to deconstruct the category of gender and emphasis the differences of women (Derrida, Lecan)

3) French Feminist Theory...
- Deconstruct categories as a kind of gender critique; A gendered version of deconstruction (Kristeva, Cixous, Irigaray)
Core of Theory
1. Gender is not a natural category, it is socially constructed

2. Gender is unified, it is internally diverse

3. Gender should not be socially meaningful — what your gender is shouldn't define who you are, your gender shouldn't influence you opportunities in life, etc.
Major Concepts
1. Performativity...

- Gender is not something you have, it is something you do; Gender comes to life in how you behave
- Instead of categories (which are fixed), they talk about continuum (fluid and arbitrary); Sees gender as a performance and act, not a fixed category
- "No fixed gender, it is all an act/performance"

2. Phallocentrism...
- Argues that the idea of universal (objective) knowledge is a male bias; Argument is about patriarchal authority which says that: this is the standard of knowledge and you can't critique it because it is objective; There are no universal standards and the claim that there are is a male biased claim
- "All objective knowledge is gender bias"