Decolonizing Feminisms: Race, Gender & Empire Building

Decolonizing Feminisms: Race, Gender & Empire Building

Decolonizing Feminisms: Race, Gender & Empire Building

Decolonizing Feminisms: Race, Gender & Empire Building

Synopsis

Donaldson presents new paradigms of interpretation that help to bring the often oppositional stances of First versus Third World and traditional versus postmodern feminism into a more constructive relationship. She situates contemporary theoretical debates about reading, writing, and the politics of identity within the context of historical colonialism primarily under the English in the nineteenth century.

Excerpt

Mir.: The strangeness of your story put heaviness in me.

Pros.: Shake it off. Come on. We'll visit Caliban, my slave, who never yields us kind answer.

Mir.: 'Tis a villain, sir, I do not love to look on.

The Tempest, 1.2.372-78

Blindness slashes our tapestry to shreds.

Audre Lorde, Our Dead behind Us: Poems

In the novel Invisible Man--Ralph Ellison's profound exploration of a black man's invisibility within a white man's world--seeing (or not seeing) is the paradigmatic political and hermeneutic act. This is particularly true in an episode that focuses upon the importance of race as an interpretive framework for the Brotherhood, the leftist group that has recruited the Invisible Man as a paid organizer. After the police arrest an unarmed black man for selling Little Black Sambo dolls without a permit and then shoot him for resisting arrest, a heated argument erupts between the Invisible Man and Brother Tobitt, a leader of the leftist group. Tobitt em-

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