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Political Theory and Feminist Social Criticism

Political Theory and Feminist Social Criticism


Part of Contemporary Political Theory

  • Date Published: August 2000
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521659840

£ 22.99

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About the Authors
  • In Political Theory and Feminist Social Criticism Brooke Ackerly demonstrates the shortcomings of contemporary deliberative democratic theory, relativism and essentialism for guiding the practice of social criticism in the real, imperfect world. Drawing theoretical implications from the activism of Third World feminists who help bring to public audiences the voices of women silenced by coercion, Brooke Ackerly provides a practicable model of social criticism. She argues that feminist critics have managed to achieve in practice what other theorists do only incompletely in theory. Complemented by Third World feminist social criticism, deliberative democratic theory becomes critical theory - actionable, coherent, and self-reflective. While a complement to democratic theory, Third World feminist social criticism also addresses the problem in feminist theory associated with attempts to deal with identity politics. Third World feminist social criticism thus takes feminist theory beyond the critical impasse of the tension between anti-relativist and anti-essentialist feminist theory.

    • A new departure in feminist theory, arguing that feminism is essential to political theory, and to thinking about democracy
    • Draws insights from real world activism, rather than abstract theory, examining the work of women campaigners in India, Bangladesh, and elsewhere
    • Wide potential market, from pol/soc theory, to women's studies, human rights and development studies
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'Ackerly's key argument is a convincing one: feminist social criticism, which includes 'third world' feminist activism, moves beyond the stalemate between anti-relativist and anti-essentialist feminist theory. In so doing, feminist critics have achieved in practice what other theorists do only incompletely in theory.' International Feminist Journal of Politics

    'Ackerly's ambitious blending of theory and practical politics will appeal to a broad audience of feminist scholars and students … the book also provides social scientists with a rich example of a methodology that derives theory from emancipatory practices and could thus be an exciting addition to graduate scope and method course.' Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society

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    Product details

    • Date Published: August 2000
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521659840
    • length: 248 pages
    • dimensions: 228 x 153 x 17 mm
    • weight: 0.39kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Silent voices and everyday critics: problems in political theory, solutions from Third World feminist social criticism
    2. Why do we need a Third World feminist theory of social criticism?
    3. Method: skeptical scrutiny, guiding criteria, and deliberative inquiry in concert
    4. Roles: social criticism and self-criticism
    5. Qualifications: everyday critics, multi-sited critics, and multiple critics
    6. Third World feminist social criticism as feminist democratic theory.

  • Author

    Brooke A. Ackerly, Vanderbilt University, Tennessee

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