By Mary Maynard, June Purvis
In keeping with the 1994 Women's experiences community convention, this article unearths the differences which proceed to form women's ideals and stories. It comprises debates on girls and nationalisms, ladies and social coverage, sexuality, black stories and ethnic experiences, girls and schooling, ladies and cultural creation and women's stories and gender reviews. the amount comprises chapters via Diana Leonard, Bunie Matlanyane-Sexwale and bel hooks.
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Additional resources for New Frontiers In Women's Studies: Knowledge, Identity And Nationalism (Feminist Perspectives on the Past and Present)
These debates and perceptions illustrate the productive cultural and intellectual work of Middle Eastern women and also throw a different and distinctive light on Western women’s assumptions about their own histories and identities. In bringing this work to the attention of Western readers concerned with Women’s Studies, I hope to contribute to some of the processes which I have identified as important for the globalized, multicultural development of the field. 36 NATIONALISMS, ETHNOCENTRISMS AND FEMINIST SCHOLARSHIP The context of Middle Eastern women’s development over the nineteenth and twentieth centuries has been deeply influenced by experiences of a new quantity and quality of material, political and cultural interventions by French, British or Russian military, commercial, diplomatic and cultural agents, paralleled after the Second World War by a comparable American impact.
Further, it is imperative that in endeavouring to create a Women’s Studies which is more inclusive, we do not simultaneously construct a new exclusivity, by ghettoizing the experiences of Black and Third World women into some kind of opaque ‘otherness’. In a world of unequal power relationships this is, indeed, a serious danger and it is to the issue of unequal power that Women’s Studies should give particular heed. Post-modern perspectives, currently in ascendance in feminist work, have difficulty in addressing the nature of social structures, together with the inequalities and hierarchies which are related to them and to which they give rise (Callinicos, 1989; Harvey, 1989; Norris, 1992).
This requires both empirical and analytical effort in order to address both the social/historical specificities and the conceptual challenges involved in pursuing a fully globalized and multicultural feminist scholarship. In historical terms FoxGenovese’s work on women and American plantation slavery, or the contributions to Strobel and Chaudhuri’s volume on white women and empire are examples of such efforts, paralleled by the theoretical and contemporary work of Spelman, Maynard, Russo, Molyneux or Ware2 (Brittan and Maynard, 1984; Fox-Genovese, 1988; Maynard, 1994; Molyneux, 1982; Spelman, 1988; Strobel and Chaudhuri, 1992; Ware, 1992).