Feminist Theory from Margin to Center Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Who must be retrained in order for the feminist movement to be successful?

2. What was the author's initial experience in women's groups?

3. How were black women's efforts received by white feminists?

4. At the end of the Preface (2000), what does the author say regarding "patriarchal mass media" and feminism?

5. What does it ultimately mean for the author when women behave like white men?

Short Essay Questions

1. How does the title of Chapter One, "Black Women - Shaping Feminist Theory," relate to the content of the chapter?

2. Describe the author's central criticism of feminist theory in Chapter One, "Black Women - Shaping Feminist Theory."

3. What is the author's view of feminism as a social movement in the Preface to the First Edition (1984)? What kind of movement does it need to be and why?

4. Is there a note of caution in the author's tone regarding the extent to which the system of power has actually changed? Where?

5. Is true sisterhood, i.e. solidarity in the struggle to achieve feminist goals, supported by society, according to the author?

6. Describe the author's personal experiences with feminists from the same background as Friedan. How did they initially respond to her attempts to contribute to the conversation around feminist theory?

7. The title of Chapter Seven, "Rethinking the Nature of Work," suggests that ideas about work must change; what changes does the author propose?

8. Are sexual liberty and "ending sexual oppression" the same thing for the author?

9. Describe the kind of power that the author sees in communities of economically disadvantaged women.

10. Compare the Preface to the second edition with Ch. 12: What similarities do you see regarding the author's vision for the future of the feminist movement? List two to three examples.

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Essay on Ch. 2 and 10: Ideas about the family.

Looking at Ch. 2 and Ch. 10 compare and contrast early and/or mainstream feminist ideas about the family with those of less privileged women.

- Did women of color and lower class women agree with mainstream feminist views on the family? What was their reaction?

- How does the author describe the relationship to family experience by many women of color, especially in relation to the broader society in which they live?

Essay Topic 2

Essay on Ch. 12: The process of feminist-oriented change.

The final chapter of the book looks at the process of feminist-oriented change and what is required to enact that change. This essay will provide an overview of the author's critiques and her prescriptions for revolutionary feminist change.

1) Discuss the author's analysis of early feminist approaches to creating change. In what way do these approaches fall short?

2) Discuss the author's recommendation for enacting change: What kind of social analysis does the author call for? What kind of action does she call for?

3) Discuss the author's view of the process of change: What attitude is called for? Why is the process of change difficult for Americans in particular?

4) Do you believe that the change the author calls for is possible?

Essay Topic 3

Essay on Ch. 6: Traditional and alternative models of power.

In Ch. 6 the author elaborates on traditional and alternative models of power and their relationship to women and the feminist movement. Discuss the central points of her analysis.

1) First, provide a brief definition of traditional and alternative models of power.

2) Next, discuss how and why early feminists understood and reacted to power.

3) Follow with a discussion of the author's observation about these feminists' ambivalent relationship to male-defined models of power.

4) Finally discuss how and why the author sees women of color and working class white women as examples of alternative models of power.

5) How do you view her assessment?

(see the answer keys)

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