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Gender and Politics

1POL415 Introduction to Political Theory
Lecturer: Dr. Bridget Cotter

Lecture Structure
• Meanings of Feminism(s) • History of Feminism • Sex and gender distinction • Are women still oppressed or disadvantaged? • Feminism and Liberalism • Equality and Difference

(from Halley. 2004. theories. • advocates against the subordination and disadvantaging of women.What is Feminism? • a set of political beliefs • a type of political and social theory • a political movement • Feminisms – beliefs. movements A theoretical or political position that is feminist: • recognises the distinction between males and females • argues that females are subordinated or disadvantaged in a system where males are dominant and advantaged. “Taking a Break from Feminism”) 3 .

“Equality feminism” Second Wave Feminism .John Stuart Mill 1869 .Equality: state.Structural Analysis .Socialist Feminists .Radical Feminists .Mary Wollstonecraft 1791 . market.Suffragettes early 20th C .Equality AND Liberation . home 4 .“Waves” of Feminism First Wave Feminism .

The Second Sex 1949 (Le Deuxieme Sex) 5 . Beginning of Part II) • What is a woman? • Sex and Gender Distinction • Sex is Biological • Gender is Socially Constructed • Anti-essentialism Simone de Beauvoir. The Second Sex.“One is not born but rather becomes a woman” (de Beauvoir.

This is the same child as in both pictures 6 .The Social Construction of Gender “Little Princess” Think of some adjectives to describe this child. “Little Man” And this child.

Sex and Gender Categories Sex Male Female Gender [Androgyny] Masculinity Femininity 7 .

com/2010/09/21/world/asia/21gende r.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0 • http://www.Afghan Girls who Live as Boys • FILM: 6min/48secs: 8 .html • ARTICLES: /world/asia/1248069063442/

Difference Feminism .Diversity Feminism . 1990 Gender Trouble 9 .Masculinities .The “Cultural Turn” .Poststructuralist Feminism .Post-Colonial Feminisms .Sexualities Judith Butler.“Third Wave” Feminism .

too Sex Hermaphrodite Male Female Gender Androgyny Masculinity Femininity 10 .Sex and Gender Sex is a Spectrum.

Gender. Sexuality Sex Hermaphrodite Male Female Gender Androgyny Masculinity Femininity Sexuality (sexual orientation) Bisexual Homosexual Heterosexual 11 .Sex.

• Video: “This is What a Feminist Looks Like” by the Feminist Majority Foundation • GNT8Mc 12 .youtube.

Are Women Still Oppressed? ECONOMIC INEQUALITY: Unequal Pay/Pensions. “glass ceiling” POLITICAL INEQUALITY: Participation in decision-making VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN: domestic violence and others INEQUALITY BEFORE THE LAW: treatment in rape cases DOMESTIC ROLES AND STEREOTYPES: women as primary carers REPRODUCTIVE RIGHTS: contraception and abortion Pro-Choice march in Washington DC. April 2004 13 .

Are Women Still Oppressed? 14 .

First wave.Second Wave.Disadvantaged Minority Rights .Economic and Development Approaches 2) Critique of Liberalism . Second Wave. Socialist Feminism.Feminism and Liberalism? 1) Extension Liberalism .Structural Changes 3) Adapting or Altering Liberalism . Radical Feminism .Positive Discrimination .Equality and Anti-Discrimination Laws . Liberal Feminism .Restricting Hate Speech and Displays of Misongyny 15 .

Economic efficiency (economic liberalism) 16 .Feminism as Extension of Liberalism 1) Rights-based arguments: “Women’s Rights are Human Rights!” 2) Utility-based arguments: Gender equality is essential to: .Modernisation (development theory) .

Feminism as Critique of Liberalism 1) A “sexual contract” (Pateman) 2) Liberalism leaves patriarchy intact 3) Public / Private Division The personal is political! 3) The liberal subject is “unembodied” and abstract (or: the liberal subject is really a man!) See Carole Pateman. 1989. 1988. “The Fraternal Social Contract” in The Disorder of Women (also in Keane. and Pateman. Civil Society and the State. The Sexual Contract 17 .1988.

6-8) State Feminism Gender Mainstreaming Women’s Policy Agencies (WPAs) Women-friendly policies Positive Discrimination 18 .Adapting and Altering Liberalism Gendering the Debate: Gendering the Debate or “Gender-framing”: inserting a gendered perspective into policy making or advocating the aims of feminism from inside the state. “Taking a Break from Feminism”. pp. (see Lovenduski. 2005.

• Disadvantaged groups need to be given special representation to have equal opportunities 19 .Altering Liberalism: Differentiated Citizenship • We are not abstract rights-bearing subjects • We are “embodied subjects” (IM Young) • Gender-neutral policy and standard political representation ignores the problems and experiences that come with having a particular body (and the social position that is attached to that body).

The New Politics of Gender Equality. M. Inclusion and Democracy (ebook) • See Module Handbook for: – Lovenduski and Baudino. I. 1989 20 . and also on gender stereotypes).More Reading Do the biological differences between men and women have any social or political significance? Should policy-makers take these differences into account? • Judith Squires. quotas) • Iris Marion Young writes on difference and democracy (adjusting democracy for disadvantaged groups. Justice and the Politics of Difference – 2002. 2005 – Young. gender mainstreaming. Palgrave (includes discussions of state feminism. 2007. Throwing Like a Girl and Other Essays – 1990. Useful books include: – 1990.

Sources for Statistical Information • Inter-parliamentary Union • Human Development Reports: • Social Watch: • See their Gender Equity Index under “Poverty Eradication and Gender Justice”: 21 .socialwatch.ipu.undp.

com/watch?v=ihd7ofrwQX0 22 .lse. gives angry speech in Parliament about the misogyny of Tony Abbott (opposition leader). VIDEO: elKimmel. including the discussion after the lecture) PODCAST: http://www2. given at the Gender Institute. “Men’s Studies: Peril or Promise” This lecture on actually on why men need Especially first 5-10 • Julia Gillard. 2012. LSE. PM of Australia. too. 2012.5 hours (but worth hearing the whole thing. 1.Recommended Audio/Video: • Michael Kimmel.

their mission is to provide a friendly and unintimidating place to discuss issues of concern to (men and women) with an interest in gender equality • Blog: 23 .facebook.wordpress.Feminists of Westminster Unite! a newly-formed UWSU Society with over 50 sterunite/ • Email address: (you can “follow” the blog to get emailed updates) • Facebook page: http://www.westminster.