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By Christine Overall
Our universities are the locus of ongoing debates over the politics of gender, of sophistication, of drawback and disability—and over the problem of "political correctness." In A Feminist I Christine total deals wide-ranging reflections from a first-person standpoint on those concerns, and at the politics of the fashionable college itself. In doing so she regularly returns to underlying epistemological matters. What are our assumptions concerning the ways that wisdom is developed? To what measure are our perceptions formed by means of our social roles and identities? some time past iteration feminists have led the best way in recognising the significance of such questions, and recognising too the ways that own event could be a useful reference element in educational thought and perform. yet reliance on own event is fraught with difficulties; how is one to accommodate tensions among the autobiographical and the analytic? This publication issues easy methods to resolving a few of these tensions, and to fruitfully maintaining others. it's a booklet of substantial perception, hot humanity, and real value.
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Extra resources for A feminist I: reflections from academia
While some chapters are more theoretical than others, all are intended to exemplify my practice of reflecting on the meaning of my situation in academia. In Chapter 2, I begin by describing some examples of feminist political and moral "role muddles," generated by the conflicting expectations that arise from roles that are socially Page 26 dissonant. I am interested in how feminists are policed, both by those who fear or despise feminism and by those who expect feminism to be a panacea. Sometimes feminists also police each other, and the result is not solidarity but rather ethical confusion about what feminism is and what feminists should do.
2) My second role muddle arises in connection with the public manifestations of my work as a feminist academic. It comes up, for example, when in discussions or reviews1 of my published work, a critic argues that as a feminist I should not have made a certain argument or included a certain paper in an anthology I've edited, or even that my views suggest that I am not really a feminist after all. The pain I experience on hearing or reading such claims is quite different from my reaction to being discussed or reviewed by non-feminist writers who are much less likely to assail me on grounds of alleged feminist inconsistency or disloyalty.
I call it an od[d]yssey because I am conscious of the eccentricity of my journey through academia. On the one hand, my academic path has been entirely ordinary and unexceptional: BA, MA, and PhD degrees, followed (after a nine-year stint at a Quebec CÉGEP) by a university appointment in which I moved up through the ranks Page 16 from assistant to associate and then to full professor. But on the other hand, my identities, both ascribed and chosen, as a woman and as a feminist, have made my academic situation anomalous by the standards set by and for the average white male faculty member.
A feminist I: reflections from academia by Christine Overall