Note on Feminist premises

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French Feminism

French Feminism is a school established by French Feminist in order to place women an equal to male. It is different with American Feminism in many ways but it believes in the importance of social and political activism in order to ensure opportunity and equal access to justice for women. It can be categorized into two:

  • Materialistic Feminism: It is interested in the social and economic oppression of women.
  • Psychoanalytic Feminism: It concentrates on women’s psychological experience.

Simone de Beauvoir ‘The Second Sex’ created a theoretical basis for a materialistic feminist. Beauvoir observes, men and considers essential subjects with free with, while women are considered contingent beings. The Othering of the woman first them getting meaning in difference with men She is less than a man, she is not fully developed a human being the way a man is. In contrast, psychoanalytic feminism examines individual psyche. The domination of woman is not only limited in economic, political and social level but also at the unconscious level. They believed that until the woman are made psychologically strong, their equality in the social, economical and political domain is impossible.

Helene Cixous one of psychoanalytic feminist examines the inappropriateness of existing language. The existing language has binaries bases on patriarchal ideology such as head or heart, father or mother, culture or nature, intelligible or palpable, sun or the moon etc. Cixous reforms the language. WomenMainstreamneed a new feminine language that undermines or eliminate the patriarchal binary thinking that oppresses and silence women. For that she suggests women to write literature on their own.

Multicultural feminism

There are different kinds of feminism. One type of feminism cannot be suitable for all kinds of female. By realizing the issues, feminist purpose a new way of studying female situation which is called multicultural feminism. The position of a woman varies according to culture. It is due to patriarchy. Patriarchy of the USA and patriarchy of Nepal or India are not the same. The expression of Hindu or Christians women are not as that of a Muslim women. The lesbian experience of patriarchy is not same as the experience of heterosexism. In such situation, single feminism seems over ruling and over generalizing. The USA is the country which has the experience of slavery. The black woman in USA and white women in the USA do not have the same experience such as the black woman were oppressed as being black and being a slave and being a woman. But white only get oppressed of being a woman. Multicultural feminism is the best solution. A woman experience should be studied according to a cultural and ethnic group where she belongs.

Generally, multicultural feminism can be defined as a blend or inclusion of feminism of various cultures. Mainstream feminism is let by white middle class and heterosexual workers and thus has included their own experience in their principles. Its only goal is too aware the woman of their identity. In fact, the mainstream if feminism has ignored to address the typical experiences, trouble, need and desires of a woman belonging to different groups like caste, class, culture, religion and nationality. As a result, multicultural feminism is getting developed inorder to address that typical experience, trouble, needs and desires of a various group of a woman like a lesbian, a black woman, poor and uneducated woman. Lesbianism, African- American feminism, Marxist feminism, Asian- American feminism, Marxist feminism is some examples involved in multicultural feminism. For example, if we talk about African-American feminism, the experience of patriarchy of a black women is different from that of a white one that is white women is oppressed by patriarchy only for her sex whereas a black woman is oppressed by both white and black men and white women as well that is she is doubly oppressed by a sex and race.

Patriarchy oppressed differently in different countries or place. Further in the border of the single country, cultural differences affect woman experience of patriarchy. The expression of patriarchy for women of color is inseparable from the experience of racism; lesbian experience a patriarchal is inseparable from the experience of heterosexual poor woman experiences from that of classism. Therefore, the aim of multicultural feminism would be the promotion a sisterhood, psychological and political bounding among woman based on the recognition of common experiences and goals including the respect for attention to differences among woman as well as an equal distribution of power among various cultural groups.

Gender studies and feminism

Patriarchy is a culture that privilege mean by promoting traditional gender role and then subordinates woman according to the traditional gender role, men are thought to be rational, powerful and superior whereas the women are emotional, weaker and inferior. The roles define by patriarchy had been successfully used to justify inequality and continue oppression. The feminist think that patriarchy is the sexiest that promote the belief that women are innately inferior to man. They agree that there are biological differences but they do not agree that these biological differences may not determine man as superior and woman as inferior. They rather see differences between the sex and the gender.

The basis concern of gender studies is to study the cultural artifact about man and woman. The society has different perceptive of looking at male and female. They are endowed with a certain role. The roles are not provided according to the natural law. It is ideologically colored and destined to exploit woman physically, psychologically, socially and economically. Feminism therefore studies woman’s cultural position and representation. There are some issues genders studies look at:

  • Patriarchal assumption about gender and gender roles that continue to oppress woman.
  • Alternatives to the current way we conceptualized gender as either feminine or masculine.
  • The relationship between sex and gender.
  • The relationship between sexuality and gender.

Clearly, feminism and gender studies are intimately related. They share some of the same subject matters as well as the desire for justice and a belief in the power of education to change our society for better. For centuries feminism has worked for gender equality for a dissolution of the patriarchal gender role that even today continue to short circuit affords to achieve complete equality between woman and man.

Feminism and Literature

As we have already discussed literature is the medium of the ideological formation. Through literature there as the possibility of projection of patriarchal ideology as well as the feminist issues. The feminism analyzes literature in accordance with the representation of a woman. In some literature, women characters are presented in revolutionary order and sometimes they are presented as submissive being. Some literature shows the submissive woman as a good girl and as in all successful and also sometimes they are not suited in revolutionary thought. The representation of woman depends on the cultural background of the author or the intention of the author. Whatever it may be the fictional character in literature governs the reality of a woman in the society.


Tyson, L. (2013). the critical theory today. Kathmandu: Ekta Publication.

  • French feminism is a school established by French feminist in order to place woman an equal to male.
  • The empowerment of woman is only possible through broadening the horizons of traditional gender roles.
  • Feminist purpose a new way of studying female situation which is called multicultural feminism.
  • The feminist think that patriarchy is the sexist that promotes the belief that woman is innately inferior to man.
  • The representation of woman depends on the cultural background of the author or the intention of the author.

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