Feminist Thought: A More Comprehensive Introduction

By Rosemarie Putnam Tong | Go to book overview

CHAPTER SEVEN
Multicultural and Global Feminism

MULTICULTURAL AND GLOBAL FEMINISTS share with postmodern feminists a view of the self as fragmented. However, for multicultural and global feminists, the roots of this fragmentation are primarily cultural, racial, and ethnic rather than sexual, psychological, and literary. There are many similarities between multicultural and global feminism. Both challenge "female essentialism," the view that the idea of "woman" exists as some sort of Platonic form each and every flesh-and-blood woman somehow fits; and both disavow "female chauvinism," the tendency of some women, privileged on account of their race or class, for example, to presume to speak on behalf of all women.

Despite the important similarities that link multicultural and global feminists, there are nonetheless some major differences that distinguish them. Multicultural feminism is based on the insight that even in one nation--the United States of America, for instance--all women are not created or constructed equal. Depending on her race and class but also on her sexual preference, age, religion, education attainment, occupation, marital status, health condition, and so on, each and every woman in the United States will experience her oppression as an American woman differently. Adding to the insights of multicultural feminists, global feminists further stress that depending on whether a woman is a citizen of a First World or a Third World nation, an advanced industrial or a developing nation, a nation that is colonialist or colonized, she will experience oppression differently.


Multicultural Feminism: An Overview

Because my experiences are those of an American woman, in this chapter I write about multicultural feminism in the United States. Moreover, I

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Feminist Thought: A More Comprehensive Introduction
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Acknowledgments viii
  • Introduction: The Diversity of Feminist Thinking 1
  • Chapter One - Liberal Feminism 10
  • Conclusion 43
  • Chapter Two - Radical Feminism: Libertarian and Cultural Perspectives 45
  • Chapter Three - Marxist and Socialist Feminism 94
  • Conclusion 127
  • Chapter Four - Psychoanalytic and Gender Feminism 130
  • Conclusion 171
  • Chapter Five - Existentialist Feminism 173
  • Conclusion 191
  • Chapter Six - Postmodern Feminism 193
  • Conclusion 193
  • Chapter Seven - Multicultural and Global Feminism 212
  • Chapter Eight - Ecofeminism 246
  • Conclusion 276
  • Conclusion: - Margins and Centers 278
  • Notes 281
  • Bibliography 317
  • Index 349
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