Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The Big Questions

In the book "Gender Trouble" Judith Butler presents us with many questions. What/who is a "woman"? What/who is a "man"? Are these terms opposite and oppositional to one another? Are these terms binary (ie If we are not one does it mean we are the other)? The reason she is working with these questions is that she has an interest in the idea of Feminism. So she begins by wondering is "Women" should really the subject of feminism, and if so what is the "woman" that feminism is describing? This she states is really the big questions for her, because she does not believe that all women really feel as if feminism represents them. She claims that to say that feminism is representative of all women is to not take into account the spectrum of womanhood and is to create a new kind of Hegemonic Womanhood.

This I feel is one place where Butler intersects with Spivak who is in her own way concerned with the idea of Hegemony, especially, in her case, with Imperial Hegemony. The idea that as the "elite" we have the write to dominate or forcibly incorporate the "other." This is feel is what Judith Butler is really trying to avoid. She does not want feminism to become some kind of gender conqueror that either destroys of folds in all the women of the world into the main idea of feminism. I think that she wants the different, as she puts it, "cross sections" of femininity such as race, ethnicity, sexuality, society of origin, and even age to have a unique and shining voice in the spectrum of feminism.

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