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Engendering Political Science: An Immodest Proposal

  • Mary Hawkesworth (a1)

Since its emergence in the 1970s, feminist scholarship has claimed to be corrective and transformative. Through original research about the experiences of the majority of the world's population, that is, women, feminist scholars have sought to correct omissions and distortions that permeate political science. Through the use of gender as an analytical tool, they have illuminated social and political relations neglected by mainstream accounts, advanced alternative explanations of political phenomena, demonstrated the defects of competing hypotheses, and debunked opposing views. Despite such impressive accomplishments, feminist political science has not become a dominant paradigm within the discipline. Few doctoral programs allow students to develop areas of concentration in feminist approaches to political studies. Few routinely include feminist scholarship in proseminars in American politics, comparative politics, international relations, political theory, public law, or public policy. None requires familiarity with leading feminist scholarship as a criterion of professional competence.

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