Seminar in Criticism and Theory: Feminist Theory

English 8060
Feminist Theory
Section 1
Elisa Glick

Cross-listed as WGST 8020.

What is feminist theory? What does feminist writing have to teach us about relations of domination and subordination in our increasingly complex world? How do various feminist theories address categories of subjectivity, embodiment, vision, language, labor, affect, power, and culture? How is feminist theory related to everyday experience? These are some of the questions we will respond to as we survey major topics, approaches, and debates in feminist theory with an eye toward exploring intersections of gender, race/ethnicity, class, and sexuality. Although we will be reading some foundational mid-century texts, the majority of the assigned readings will be drawn from contemporary feminist writing. Paying particular attention to theoretical confluences and divergences among feminists, as well as the conditions under which theoretical works are produced, we will explore the texts and contexts of feminist theories including black feminism, feminist theories of embodiment, postmodern feminism, queer theory, psychoanalytic feminism, feminist postcolonial theory, material/materialist feminism, feminist visual theory, transnational feminism, feminist pedagogy, and feminist and queer affect theory.