Heterosexism

The word ‘heterosexism’ derives directly from the feminist creation of the term ‘sexism’ during the late 1960s. The first usage of the term heterosexism is given as 1979 by the Oxford English Dictionary and it is defined as ‘prejudice and antagonism shown by heterosexual persons towards homosexuals; discrimination against homosexuals’ (OED online). The felt necessity… Read More Heterosexism

Identity Politics/ the Politics of Identity

The utopian vision of ‘sisterhood’ – the collecting together of all women under the same political banner – was in part responsible for the burgeoning interest in feminism and the emergent Women’s Liberation Movement. It was inevitably going to come under fire once more women who weren’t white, middle class, heterosexual and university-educated became involved,… Read More Identity Politics/ the Politics of Identity

Lesbian Continuum: A Brief Note

The ‘lesbian continuum’ was a phrase coined by Adrienne Rich in her pathfinding essay Compulsory Heterosexuality and Lesbian Existence (1980, reprinted in Rich 1986). Rich’s notion of ‘compulsory heterosexuality’ here extends the definition of lesbian beyond that of sexual identity to encompass the homosocial bonds between women. In order to counter the numerous ways in… Read More Lesbian Continuum: A Brief Note

Judith Butler’s Concept of Performativity

Claiming that “Identity is performatively constituted”, Judith Butler in her path breaking Gender Trouble (1990) formulated a postmodernist notion of gender, in line with the deconstructive ethos and contradictory to the traditional notion’ , that genders are fixed categories. Butler defined gender as a social role performed/enacted by the individuals, and validated and accepted by… Read More Judith Butler’s Concept of Performativity

The Influence of Poststructuralism on Feminism

With the arrival of Poststructuralism on the critical scene, Feminism emerged as more eclectic and expanded its horizons to merge into the realms of other contemporary theories, thus giving rise to a plethora of rampant and dynamically developing areas such as cyberfeminism, ecofeminism, postcolonial, black feminism/womanism, cultural/radical feminism, liberal feminisms, materialist/neo-marxist feminism and so on.… Read More The Influence of Poststructuralism on Feminism