Entertainment Books:

Feminism Without Women

Culture and Criticism in a "Postfeminist" Age


Paperback / softback

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Feminism Without Women by Tania Modleski
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Feminism Without Women examines the operation of "postfeminism" in popular culture, especially popular film, and in cultural studies. By scrutinizing a variety of feminist and poststructuralist theoretical positions and freqently juxtaposing her discussions with analyses of contemporary movies (ranging from Pee-wee's Big Adventure to Lethal Weapon and Three Men and a Baby ), Modleski offers a broad perspective on the future of feminism. In particular, she shows how women as social subjects are once again being relegated to the margins of discourse and society, only now, ironically, they are in danger of being marginalized by feminism itself . Feminism Without Women is a multifaceted response to the shift within feminist theory from "gynocritics" (a woman-centred critical practice) to an increasingly male-oriented "gender studies". This move has been accompanied by feminist/philosophical attempts to abolish the very category of "woman". A large portion of the book is devoted to analyzing the state of "male feminism" and argues that the "new masculinities" being heralded by some feminists are less revolutionary than is often claimed; that these kinder , gentler masculinit are in many ways perfectly consonant with the conservative times. Modleski situates her discussions of criticism and theory in the context of popular culture, and social issues relevant to feminism: surrogate mothering, women and war, the debates over pornography, gay representation in the era of AIDS, the controversy within feminism over lesbian S&M, and the intensification of racism in the 1980s and 1990s.

Author Biography

Tania Modleski is Professor of English at the University of Southern California. She is the author of Loving with a Vengeance and The Women Who Knew Too Much, both published by Routledge.
Release date NZ
November 7th, 1991
Country of Publication
United Kingdom
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