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Dr. Sara Diaz
WGST 202: Gender, Difference, and Power
More on the 2ndWave
• 1st Wave movement focused on
structural change (suffrage).
• 2nd Wave included structural AND
• Abortion/Birth Control
• Women’s Health Movement
• Sexual Liberation
• Professional Work
• Equality in Education (Title IX)
• Equal Rights Amendment (failed)
• Egalitarian marriage
• Wages for Housework
• Welfare Rights (originally intended for white middle class
• Other Movements: Peace Movement, Civil Rights, New Left,
Black/Brown/Red Power movements.
“The Personal is Political”
• Second wave slogan
• Connects what happens in our own lives to
larger political forces.
• Conceptualizes politics as something that
effects us as individuals.
What is Feminism?
“Feminism is the political theory and
practice to free all women: women of color,
working-class women, poor women,
physically challenged women, lesbians, old
women, as well as white economically
privileged heterosexual women. Anything
less is not feminism, but merely female self-aggrandizement.”
• What is “hegemonic feminism”?
• What is “multi-racial feminism?
•What does Becky Thompson want us
to understand about the history of
the Second Wave?
•Why is it important that our feminist
histories are accurate?
Daily Response Question
Why do the members of the Combahee River
Collective argue that we must understand
oppression as "interlocking"?
• Feminist framework
• Racism is reinforced
by sexism which is
The social positioning of one group over
another group that leads to unearned,
systematic advantage for those who are
privileged and unwarranted systematic
disadvantage for those who are
•We all occupy multiple social
• Our identities cannot be reduced
• Mix of privileged and subjugated
• Oppressions are not additive
• a black woman is not simply twice as
oppressed as a white woman
• System of Domination
• Interlocking, mutually reinforcing
• All the “isms” work together
• Not all privileges and oppressions are
equivalent to each other
• “There can be no single-issue politics”
– Audre Lorde
The problem with “Sisterhood”
“Even when there is evidence of female
oppression among women of diverse
backgrounds, it is important to listen to the
individual assessment which each woman
makes of her own condition, rather than
assume that a synonymous experience of
female oppression exists among all
--Johnnetta B. Cole
Difference: A Tool for Liberation
“Certainly there are very real differences
between us of race, age, and sex. But it is
not those differences between us that are
separating us. It is rather our refusal to
recognize those differences and to examine
the distortions which result from our
misnaming them and their effects upon
human behavior and expectation.”
Our Central Questions
• Which women, when, and where?
• How do systems of oppression/privilege
intersect and what are their impacts?
• How are our identities constructed by
interlocking systems of domination?
• How can we work toward feminist social