SOC244H5 Study Guide - Marxist Feminism, Feminist Theory, Mary Wollstonecraft
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Lecture 2 - soc244 - - sept 13 2011
- find something more focused for assignment - eg. rise of multi generational households,
impact of divorce
- peer reviewed journals! no newspaper
last two pages - reflect on what you've learned on the articles - does it drive with your
own experiences ? Does it relate to your experiences ? Be reflective, common themes,
and give some questions that were not fully answered.
- Title page, name, id number, date of submission.
If they're long articles, photocopy first five- six pages.
Lecture 1 Review:
Structural functionalists: mother is emotional and expressive and father is breadwinner.
Symbolic interactions - is individual experiences within the family and how individuals
experience impact how they interact with each other - individual interpretation. used to
understand the dimensions of marriages etc.
Lecture 2: The Enlightenment
The enlightenment is characterized by a period of reason, knowledge , science - self
actualization- fulfilling yourself all that you can be in the course of your life - women
took an active part in the course of enlightenment.
Central theme in enlightenment- human progress- to promote equality - for others
oppressed peoples and for themselves. Civilization wanted had this struggle to overcome
tradition which kept people in particular roles - so this was time to challenge traditional
ways of living.
Liberal feminist theory for eg emerges.
A major shift in the way people thought about themselves and stuff around them. A new
field of knowledge, physics biology geography and challenged how people understood
the world. eg Charles Darwin.
Important to think about this type of thinking on families and women too.
- it is also an age of colonialism - beginning of industrial capitalism .- rethinking
individual rights, freedoms, greater equality, they were crushing other indigenous
populations - eg slavery.
A great interest in preserving rights and freedoms, this did not translate into greater
freedom and liberty for people.
Important to know, these contradictions emerged from the enlightenment.
Feminist Theories :
The Marxist Conflict: observed a certain passing of life - a particular way of life was
being lost. Peaseants and villagers moved to crowded cities to work in factories, (the
industrial revolution) exploitation, human misery, - lay between the proletariat and the
bourgeoisie 0 owns the means of production. social change was based on the overthrow
of the capitalist class.
the wealth of the bourgeoisie - gave work for the proletariats.
***1846 - Marx furthers his analysis on exploitation by featuring the family as the
original site for the unequal distribution of labor. Wives and children constitute the first
property of men. Despite the family observation, gender is not a basis of his focus .
- he offers a critic of capitalism - so with the growth of industrial economies -
increasingly relied of families.
- rather then consuming what they produced, it is easier for families to purchase and buy
things from the market - so there is increasingly dependency on the market.
- there was somehow a naturalness to the family - and to the family structure.
in the origins of the family - Engels argues - economic unit shaped by material change.
Marx - this is a two fold character - on one side - the production for the need to
assistance, on the other side - is the production of human beings - the labour force.
two reproductions are important - reproducing a social labor force and the labor force.
*accumulation of private property the begins of production for exchange rather then
consumption . - main thesis of Marx - Private property - grew more important and grew
more important to have male offspring's. - so everything can be passed down - eg
property rights - according to Engels it is at this point that there was a change on the roles
of descents. "The defeat of the female sex" < Engels.
First form of family according to Engels and Marx : whether a nuclear family - is based
on economic conditions - private property over common ownership of things. -In
industrial society - this individual is the male wage earner.
Duffe textbook - Capitalism encourages women approaches by making them more
dependent on the wage earner -the male . There is social, cultural , biological work that
makes women become domestic servants of men. This is the result of private property.
Even in economies that are more socialist - the family is seen as a unit -capitalism is an
essential component to feminine analysis.
Feminine perspective - early feminist questioned it about their responsibilities and their
contributions to families.
Mary Wollstonecraft - key piece of writing - advocated the rights of women political
rights, indication, rights to vote but did not challenge women's responsibilities int he
family - so these equality rights were about how to make women better mothers, better
daughters and how they were suppose to become better in the family and not challenge
their role within the family. Early writers advocating for equality for women - th
importance of educating. them.
Early Marxist - they did not challenge women's natural responsibilities within the family.
1963-" the feminist view" by Friedman - first to urged women to get out of their suburban
households and prove themselves as individuals. urging women to get out and fulfill
themselves on a level that was separate from the households - urges the problem of
identity that was routed in the Victorian culture that idealized women's place in the
Liberal feminists - encouraging reproductive resources, maternity leave &pay - 2nd way