New Materialisms: Ontology, Agency, and Politics
Diana Coole - 2009
By gathering essays that exemplify the new thinking about matter and processes of materialization, this important collection shows how scholars are reworking older materialist traditions, contemporary theoretical debates, and advances in scientific knowledge to address pressing ethical and political challenges. In the introduction, Diana Coole and Samantha Frost highlight common themes among the distinctive critical projects that comprise the new materialisms. The continuities they discern include a posthumanist conception of matter as lively or exhibiting agency, and a reengagement with both the material realities of everyday life and broader geopolitical and socioeconomic structures.Coole and Frost argue that contemporary economic, environmental, geopolitical, and technological developments demand new accounts of nature, agency, and social and political relationships; modes of inquiry that privilege consciousness and subjectivity are not adequate to the task. New materialist philosophies are needed to do justice to the complexities of twenty-first-century biopolitics and political economy, because they raise fundamental questions about the place of embodied humans in a material world and the ways that we produce, reproduce, and consume our material environment.ContributorsSara AhmedJane BennettRosi BraidottiPheng CheahRey ChowWilliam E. ConnollyDiana CooleJason EdwardsSamantha FrostElizabeth GroszSonia KruksMelissa A. Orlie
Catherine D’Ignazio - 2020
It has been used to expose injustice, improve health outcomes, and topple governments. But it has also been used to discriminate, police, and surveil. This potential for good, on the one hand, and harm, on the other, makes it essential to ask: Data science by whom? Data science for whom? Data science with whose interests in mind? The narratives around big data and data science are overwhelmingly white, male, and techno-heroic. In Data Feminism, Catherine D'Ignazio and Lauren Klein present a new way of thinking about data science and data ethics—one that is informed by intersectional feminist thought.Illustrating data feminism in action, D'Ignazio and Klein show how challenges to the male/female binary can help challenge other hierarchical (and empirically wrong) classification systems. They explain how, for example, an understanding of emotion can expand our ideas about effective data visualization, and how the concept of invisible labor can expose the significant human efforts required by our automated systems. And they show why the data never, ever “speak for themselves.”Data Feminism offers strategies for data scientists seeking to learn how feminism can help them work toward justice, and for feminists who want to focus their efforts on the growing field of data science. But Data Feminism is about much more than gender. It is about power, about who has it and who doesn't, and about how those differentials of power can be challenged and changed.
Sayak Valencia - 2010
Valencia argues that violence itself has become a product within hyper-consumerist neoliberal capitalism, and that tortured and mutilated bodies have become commodities to be traded and utilized for profit in an age of impunity and governmental austerity.In a lucid and transgressive voice, Valencia unravels the workings of the politics of death in the context of contemporary networks of hyper-consumption, the ups and downs of capital markets, drug trafficking, narcopower, and the impunity of the neoliberal state. She looks at the global rise of authoritarian governments, the erosion of civil society, the increasing violence against women, the deterioration of human rights, and the transformation of certain cities and regions into depopulated, ghostly settings for war. She offers a trenchant critique of masculinity and gender constructions in Mexico, linking their misogynist force to the booming trade in violence.This book is essential reading for anyone seeking to analyze the new landscapes of war. It provides novel categories that allow us to deconstruct what is happening, while proposing vital epistemological tools developed in the convulsive Third World border space of Tijuana.
Paying for the Party: How College Maintains Inequality
Elizabeth A. Armstrong - 2013
Five years later, one is earning a good salary at a prestigious accounting firm. With no loans to repay, she lives in a fashionable apartment with her fiance. The other woman, saddled with burdensome debt and a low GPA, is still struggling to finish her degree in tourism. In an era of skyrocketing tuition and mounting concern over whether college is "worth it," Paying for the Party is an indispensable contribution to the dialogue assessing the state of American higher education. A powerful expose of unmet obligations and misplaced priorities, it explains in vivid detail why so many leave college with so little to show for it.Drawing on findings from a five-year interview study, Elizabeth Armstrong and Laura Hamilton bring us to the campus of "MU," a flagship Midwestern public university, where we follow a group of women drawn into a culture of status seeking and sororities. Mapping different pathways available to MU students, the authors demonstrate that the most well-resourced and seductive route is a "party pathway" anchored in the Greek system and facilitated by the administration. This pathway exerts influence over the academic and social experiences of all students, and while it benefits the affluent and well-connected, Armstrong and Hamilton make clear how it seriously disadvantages the majority. Eye-opening and provocative, Paying for the Party reveals how outcomes can differ so dramatically for those whom universities enroll.
Toward a Feminist Theory of the State
Catharine A. MacKinnon - 1989
Using the debate over Marxism and feminism as a point of departure, MacKinnon develops a theory of gender centered on sexual subordination and applies it to the state. The result is an informed and compelling critique of inequality and a transformative vision of a direction for social change.
The Politics of Reality: Essays in Feminist Theory
Marilyn Frye - 1983
for understanding the basic, early and continuing perspectives of feminists. And for all of us they provide a theoretical framework in which to read the present as well as the past." - WOMEN'S REVIEW OF BOOKS"The style is both scholarly and direct without being ponderous. Frye makes a concerted effort to stimulate discussion, as opposed to arguing unopposed, so that much of the work is novel and candid... An important addition to a complete feminist library." - CHOICE"Only those who wish to remain ignorant of contemporary feminist themes, pursued here by a thinker of an unusual cast of mind, can afford to neglect a careful reading on the essays collected in the present volume." - ETICHS, AN INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF SOCIAL, POLITICAL AND LEGAL PHILOSOPHY"This is radical feminist theory at its best: clear, careful and critical." - SIGNS
Justice and the Politics of Difference
Iris Marion Young - 1990
It critically analyzes basic concepts underlying most theories of justice, including impartiality, formal equality, and the unitary moral subjectivity. Starting from claims of excluded groups about decision making, cultural expression, and division of labor, Iris Young defines concepts of domination and oppression to cover issues eluding the distributive model. Democratic theorists, according to Young do not adequately address the problem of an inclusive participatory framework. By assuming a homogeneous public, they fail to consider institutional arrangements for including people not culturally identified with white European male norms of reason and respectability. Young urges that normative theory and public policy should undermine group-based oppression by affirming rather than suppressing social group difference. Basing her vision of the good society on the differentiated, culturally plural network of contemporary urban life, she argues for a principle of group representation in democratic publics and for group-differentiated policies. This is an innovative work, an important contribution to feminist theory and political thought, and one of the most impressive statements of the relationship between postmodernist critiques of universalism and concrete thinking.... Iris Young makes the most convincing case I know of for the emancipatory implications of postmodernism. --Seyla Benhabib, State University of New York at Stony Brook
Third World Women and the Politics of Feminism
Chandra Talpade Mohanty - 1991
Highly recommended... " --Choice..". the book challenges assumptions and pushes historic and geographical boundaries that must be altered if women of all colors are to win the struggles thrust upon us by the 'new world order' of the 1990s." --New Directions for Women"This surely is a book for anyone trying to comprehend the ways sexism fuels racism in a post-colonial, post-Cold War world that remains dangerous for most women." --Cynthia H. Enloe..". provocative analyses of the simultaneous oppressions of race, class, gender and sexuality... a powerful collection." --Gloria Anzaldua..". propels third world feminist perspectives from the periphery to the cutting edge of feminist theory in the 1990s." --Aihwa Ong..". a carefully presented wealth of much-needed information." --Audre Lorde..". it is a significant book." --The Bloomsbury Review..". excellent... The nondoctrinaire approach to the Third World and to feminism in general is refreshing and compelling." --World Literature Today..". an excellent collection of essays examining 'Third World' feminism." --The Year's Work in Critical and Cultural TheoryThese essays document the debates, conflicts, and contradictions among those engaged in developing third world feminist theory and politics. Contributors: Evelyne Accad, M. Jacqui Alexander, Carmen Barroso, Cristina Bruschini, Rey Chow, Juanita Diaz-Cotto, Angela Gilliam, Faye V. Harrison, Cheryl Johnson-Odim, Chandra Talpade Mohanty, Ann Russo, Barbara Smith, Nayereh Tohidi, Lourdes Torres, Cheryl L. West, & Nellie Wong.
The Promise of Happiness
Sara Ahmed - 2010
It asks what follows when we make our desires and even our own happiness conditional on the happiness of others: “I just want you to be happy”; “I’m happy if you’re happy.” Combining philosophy and feminist cultural studies, Sara Ahmed reveals the affective and moral work performed by the “happiness duty,” the expectation that we will be made happy by taking part in that which is deemed good, and that by being happy ourselves, we will make others happy. Ahmed maintains that happiness is a promise that directs us toward certain life choices and away from others. Happiness is promised to those willing to live their lives in the right way.Ahmed draws on the intellectual history of happiness, from classical accounts of ethics as the good life, through seventeenth-century writings on affect and the passions, eighteenth-century debates on virtue and education, and nineteenth-century utilitarianism. She engages with feminist, antiracist, and queer critics who have shown how happiness is used to justify social oppression, and how challenging oppression causes unhappiness. Reading novels and films including Mrs. Dalloway, The Well of Loneliness, Bend It Like Beckham, and Children of Men, Ahmed considers the plight of the figures who challenge and are challenged by the attribution of happiness to particular objects or social ideals: the feminist killjoy, the unhappy queer, the angry black woman, and the melancholic migrant. Through her readings she raises critical questions about the moral order imposed by the injunction to be happy.
Dangerous Liaisons: The Marriages and Divorces of Marxism and Feminism
Cinzia Arruzza - 2010
It shows time and again the controversial, often difficult relationship between feminism and Marxism. The theoretical questions discussed include the origins of women’s oppression, domestic labor, dual systems theory, performativity, and differentialism. Women’s oppression is a structural element of the division of labor and one of the direct factors through which capitalism not only reinforces its ideological domination but also organizes the exploitation and reproduction of labor. The integration of patriarchal relations and capitalism has led to their radical transformation—in the family, in terms of women’s place in production, in sexual relations, and with respect to sexual identity. Marxism needs to probe complex processes: ongoing transformations and crises, a global context creating an increasingly feminized workforce, and changing relations between men and women. The book maintains that it is a mistake to submerge gender into class or to believe that freedom from exploitation automatically brings about women’s liberation and the ending of sexual roles; it is equally wrong is to think the class question can be removed and gender made the main enemy.
Wages Against Housework
Silvia Federici - 1975
We say it is unwaged work.They call it frigidity. We call it absenteeism.Every miscarriage is a work accident.Homosexuality and heterosexuality are both working conditions…but homosexuality is workers’ control of production, not the end of work.More smiles? More money. Nothing will be so powerful in destroying the healing virtues of a smile.Neuroses, suicides, desexualization: occupational diseases of the housewife.
Counting for Nothing: What Men Value and What Women are Worth
Marilyn Waring - 1988
A pollution-free environment counts for nothing. Even some people - namely women - count for nothing. This is the case, at least, according to the United Nations System of National Accounts. Author Marilyn Waring, former New Zealand M.P., now professor, development consultant, writer, and goat farmer, isolates the gender bias that exists in the current system of calculating national wealth.As Waring observes, in this accounting system women are considered 'non-producers' and as such they cannot expect to gain from the distribution of benefits that flow from production. Issues like nuclear warfare, environmental conservation, and poverty are likewise excluded from the calculation of value in traditional economic theory. As a result, public policy, determined by these same accounting processes, inevitably overlooks the importance of the environment and half the world's population.Counting for Nothing, originally published in 1988, is a classic feminist analysis of women's place in the world economy brought up to date in this reprinted edition, including a sizeable new introduction by the author. In her new introduction, the author updates information and examples and revisits the original chapters with appropriate commentary. In an accessible and often humorous manner, Waring offers an explanation of the current economic systems of accounting and thoroughly outlines ways to ensure that the significance of the environment and the labour contributions of women receive the recognition they deserve.
Methodology of the Oppressed
Chela Sandoval - 2000
Third World feminism" into the narrative in a way that thoroughly alters our perspective on contemporary culture and subjectivity.What Sandoval has identified is a language, a rhetoric of resistance to postmodern cultural conditions. U.S liberation movements of the post-World War II era generated specific modes of oppositional consciousness. Out of these emerged a new activity of consciousness and language Sandoval calls the "methodology of the oppressed". This methodology -- born of the strains of the cultural and identity struggles that currently mark global exchange -- holds out the possibility of a new historical moment, a new citizen-subject, and a new form of alliance consciousness and politics.Utilizing semiotics and U.S. Third World feminist criticism, Sandoval demonstrates how this methodology mobilizes love as a category of critical analysis. Rendering this approach in all its specifics, Methodology of the Oppressed gives rise to an alternative mode of criticism opening new perspectives on a theoretical, literary, aesthetic, social movement, or psychic expression.