Friday, March 25, 2005

Post feminist post

Just to clear a something up.
There is more than one meaning for 'post' and there appears to be some confusion.
When we refer to post feminism, it is not about feminism on a post as some think.

(If only life WERE that simple.)

Perhaps you might like to pop across to the post feminist forum to think about what post feminism is.(The guerilla girls seem a bit scarey.)

Certainly my view is that after the first ardent waives of feminism, many women felt the need to reassert what they valued about femininty - which I think they feel had been undervalued by feminism in its extreme forms. Wikipedia is not really helpful with its definition.

But as Stephanie indicated on a comment on my post yesterday, Angela McRobbie is clear on this sort of thing.

And as synchronicity would have it, Anya in E selves had also only just mentioned the same article as Stephanie, but which I cannot read as Sheffield Uni does not subscribe to that journal ...
I am certainly REALLY looking forward to Anya's article on Sex and the City and hope I can get a copy of Angelaa McRobbie's article soon. (Hint, hint.)

But to get to the point, I enjoy the post feminist stuff a lot because I see myself as a post feminist someone who sees that it is possible to have a very broad idea of feminism. Feminism is more exhausting than the post stuff and far too intense for me.

I like the way the women on Sex and the City make choices about how to live. I think the show depicts women who outrageously enjoy feminine fashions, girlie food (cupcakes) and so on, they are feisty and busy and grab their rights to buy expensive stuff, indulge themselves and use their hard earned cash to do what they want to do. The show does not imply the world has changed from a patriarchy but it does show the post fem position within that patriarchy...
To take a post feminist position does not, I think, mean that you think the work is done. It is a position that recognises a plurality of possibilities for women.

But I am sure Anya will tell us more in due course.

And quite frankly I lurve Buffy.She is an ACTION CHICK ON TOP (Lynn megow):
In “Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Vampires, Postmodernity, and Postfeminism,” author Susan Owen calls Buffy a post-feminist narrative, partly because “a female is controlling the narrative and delivering the punches.” In Buffy's world, the women don't need men to rid the world of the bad guys; Buffy kicks butt all by herself.

But while we wait, go here, as Stephanie suggests and have a real mean mean time.


Anya said...

Ooohhh Joolz, now you've put the pressure on *grin* I am just editing the final touches on my Sex and the City paper - my half of the paper is about 'the body as a spectacle for desire' so I get to talk about fashion and the body as text and the link between the corporeal and the textual. It was the most fun piece of writing I've ever done (maybe because it wasn't focussed on education!! *grin). It also uses McRobbie's post-feminist ideas of 'the new gender regime' being created through shows such as Sex and the City and so on... I can email you stuff when I am back in the office with a fast connection, but at home its impossible with my little modem.

I think the key ideas I used from McRobbies paper about post-feminism related to the fact that the sex and the city girls were able to enjoy sex without worrying about the old 'double standards', they were all independent and capable of earning a living (Miranda went to Harvard after all!) yet they're also quite ok with declaring their anxieties about love. Because the show is a comedy it also sets up a play between gender identities and cultural performance, and the girls are able to laugh at themselves for falling in and out of those traditional patrirarchal fantasies. Anyway... more will come soon!

cityB said...

Did you see "Boys don't cry" on tv the other night? It was great to watch it a second time because I didn't cry so much and so I could see how brilliantly it raises issues about gender as a social construct. Just a thought. I think post-feminism is a money thing, ie much easier to be one when you're on the winning side of capitalist society.

Joolz said...

Gosh Anya, this is really interesting. Body as text, I am v interested in that. I know what you mean about not writing about education; it is very lioberating I think. I hate writing about school stuff these days and so that's why I like doing Internet stuff instead - calling it 'home based literacy development.'. But Sex and the City is something else.
I must say, while there is a LOT I don't identify with on the show, there is a lot I do.

As for CB's remarks, I agree there too. I think feminism has often been criticised as being the luxury for miiddle class women while working class women have just had to battle on. After all, they have always juggled childcare and other work. Sex and the City women definitely had the cash to be able to have the fun they wanted and the woman with the baby (don't know their names) was hardly an example of the usual single mother situation ... And their beauty tended to help them make choices which I have never experienced!!
What say you?

BTW Anya, I LOVE Profgrrrl's blog. I found her link on your blog, so thanks for that!

CU soon

PS Am supposed to be writing a paper or a conference which is on Tuesday. Bit bored with it.

Anya said...

Hi Joolz! How was your conference and how did your paper go and what was it on and I wanna know more! *grin*

I've never seen Boys Don't Cry actually - maybe I should rent it on DVD?

I think there are many definitions of post-feminism - the one I like is the idea that we should celebrate a diversity of femininities - but I don't like the other one that says we should all go backwards and be subject to patriarchal dominance!

I think cityb is right about money because there are definitely more choices with better finances. But its also about education I think - and anything that can give you those choices. I am still deciding about the body issue - I wonder if I would have had more choices if I had been beautiful? I think my life would have gone in some very different directions but ... I am very happy with where I am now and I don't see being single as a failure like the women of my mother's generation would have done at my age!

cityB said...

You can drop the "if I had been beautiful" stuff right now, Anya - your photo looks pretty damned good to me. I guess you're right about education giving you more choices as I think even beautiful and/ or rich people end up getting used and pigeon-holed into subservient roles unless they have enough nouse to find a way to be themselves. Just think about what happened to Princess Di! You should DEFINITELY get Boys don't Cry on DVD. You will love it.

About Me

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Sheffield, South Yorks, United Kingdom
I am an academic interested in New Literacies, Digital Lifestyles, Informal Online Learning.