Constituting Feminist Subjects
Brand: Cornell University Press

Constituting Feminist Subjects

  • Publish Date: 1998-07-01
  • Binding: Paperback
  • Author: Kathi Weeks

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Kathi Weeks takes a basic insight--modernist and postmodernist thought are not one thing, they are complex fields with multiple and jostling threads running through them--and she proceeds to follow up and disentangle those threads that are important for feminism. I really loved reading this book. It is both critical and appreciative. It is truly written in what I would call a feminist spirit. --Kathy Ferguson, University of Hawaii

Kathi Weeks suggests that one of the most important tasks for contemporary feminist theory is to develop theories of the subject that are adequate to feminist politics. Although the 1980s modernist-postmodernist debate put the problem of feminist subjectivity on the agenda, Weeks contends that limited debate now blocks the further development of feminist theory.

Both modernists and postmodernists succeeded in making clear the problems of an already constituted, essentialist subject. What remains as an ongoing project, Weeks contends, is creating a theory of the constitution of subjects to account for the processes of social construction. This book presents one such account. Drawing on a number of different theoretical frameworks, including feminist standpoint theory, socialist feminism, and poststructuralist thought, as well as theories of performativity and self-valorization, the author proposes a nonessentialist feminist subject, a theory of constituting subjects.


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