OT feminisms (was Meredith Ann Pierce)

Ika blake at gaudaprime.co.uk
Thu Mar 4 10:58:04 EST 2004

Irina wrote:

>>Thank you, thank you! You've just given me words to explain why I don't
>>call myself a feminist. I associate feminism with people making my
>>choices for me. If you want to stay home and look after kids instead of
>>going out to a job, you're unliberated; if you want to wear a headscarf
>>in church you're oppressed; if you want to marry a man you're cheating
>>your sisters. That's the brand of feminism I was brought up on, and I
>>don't want any of it.

and Melissa responded:

> I tend to swing back and forth on whether I actually refer to myself as a
> feminist or not.  What you describe isn't "really" what feminism means,
> deep
> down,

Depends on the feminism, doesn't it? I remember hearing that "the French
feminists" (ie Julia Kristeva, Helene Cixous and Luce Irigaray and their
associates/followers) described themselves as "anti-feminists" for some
years after a group of feminists whose politics/theory were violently
opposed to Cixous, Kristeva's and Irigaray's trademarked the word
"feminist"; and I've had Estonian and Czech friends whose sexual politics
were similar to mine react very badly to being called "feminist". It's one
of those words like "queer", that covers a range of extremely different
and sometimes oppositional theoretical positions, political approaches and
personal practices.

ObDWJ: um... there's an odd mixture in her books of gender
division/complementarity on the magical level - I'm thinking of the 'male'
and 'female' magics in Black Maria and The Merlin Conspiracy - with a
total disregard for traditional gender characteristics on the level of the
characters (lots of femmey boys and tomboy girls. I suppose Witch Week has
the biggest division between boys and girls, maybe because of the
boarding-school milieu).

Love, Ika

"I had no choice but to recognise that the world was suddenly making
itself available for improvement, and it was all Morrissey's fault"
- Andrew O'Hagan
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