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LINK CORRECTED 2013 Feminisms: Not Just For Elites

April 26, 2013

Recent books by elite women have been urging that all women need to do is follow their example to achieve success at home and in the public world of power.  The example of Hillary Clinton is held up as an example of “how far women have progressed.”  Zillah Eisenstein, a longtime feminist theorist, has written a fine article about the problem with such an emphasis on what 1% of women have gained, while for most of us, life has not improved.   Her ideas are worth thinking about and discussing.  I’d love your response on what she says.

Feminisms, Unchained  by Zillah Eisenstein

Aljazeera, April 16, 2013


7 Comments leave one →
  1. April 26, 2013 7:36 pm

    Hmmm, the link doesn’t seem to be working, but I’d love to read it.

    • April 27, 2013 9:41 am

      Thanks for telling me. I have corrected it. You can try again.

  2. April 27, 2013 1:30 am

    Yes, the link didn’t work, but I googled her name and the article name and read it. It’s great.
    I love this quote:

    “Women have been excluded from spheres of power throughout history. The particular spheres may shift and change, but exclusion is part of the systematic and systemic oppression of women. But simple inclusion does not change the structural problem sufficiently. It may loosen the grip of discrimination but it does not dissolve it. So I remain cautious of simply reforming the exclusivity of misogyny.”

    A profound and true observation. We’ve seen how women who rise to power in the corporate world and in politics, for example, get caught up in the structures and strategies of power, and take on the leopard’s spots. And, as Zilla points out so eloquently, ordinary women, the 85+%, struggle on.

    And I love her closing thought, one not often voiced by radical feminists:

    “It is important that feminists of all sorts – beyond the biological body – remember the wounds that imperial feminism has caused. They should also forgive them. A forgotten wounding cannot be healed. Instead it is left to fester. But without forgiving there is no movement.”

  3. April 27, 2013 6:06 pm

    Thanks, Christine. Those are great quotes. I was a bit overwhelmed by how many lines I wanted to include, that I left them out entirely. Have you read any of Zillah Eisenstein’s writings? I read some long ago which were in the Marxist-Feminist thread. She may have started writing regularly in Aljazeera. I found another article of hers in their archives about why being allowed to fight in combat was not a feminist gain, especially when the US military is so full of rape and harassment of female soldiers.

  4. April 29, 2013 9:22 am

    Yes, I understand. My fingers often don’t hit the right keys either.
    I don’t read much ‘”feminist” writing any more, but did some with the feminist classics bloggers last year. Too often the current writings just annoy me. That’s why I have been pleased to find some good articles being published. Sometimes I feel the need to speak out on what feminists seem to have forgotten in the past 30 or 40 years. As Eisenstein does. I may try and find a more recent book of hers.

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