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. Were there ever alternate reactions to black women's efforts to participate in the early feminist movement, and if so what were they?

2. How has the author's own perception of her book held up?

3. "The problem that has no name" is a quotation by which author?

4. For the author, what perspective really changed the direction of feminist thought?

5. As stated in the 1984 Preface, what is the primary weakness of feminist theory that the author promises to address in her book?

Short Essay Questions

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

2. How are traditional patriarchal concepts of gender related to violence against women?

3. What significant effect can feminism have on the family?

4. What differences and similarities does the author see between black men and white men?

5. Describe the early feminist view on parenting stated in Chapter Ten, "Revolutionary Parenting."

6. 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.

7. Are there tensions around female heterosexuality within the feminist movement?

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

9. What can alternative models of power accomplish, according to the author?

10. 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?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Essay on Ch. 8: Women and education.

Provide an overview of the author's discussion of the role of literacy in relationship to feminism. Analyze her recommendation that women of color should seek to further their education and intellectual development in order to participate more in feminist theory and the feminist movement.

1) The author promotes literacy as a solution to the problem of many women-especially women of color- being excluded from the feminist movement. How does promoting literacy address the problem of exclusion? What other things does literacy accomplish (e.g. furthering feminism's goals, dispelling stereotypes, etc.).

2) Does promoting literacy address the problem of feminist writing being too academic and intellectual, and therefore inaccessible? What is the author's recommendation for dealing with this problem? Is this a realistic solution in your view?

3) Are there other solutions that the author does not suggest? For example, are there ways to dispel stereotypes, promote feminist goals, and educate women about feminist issues that do not include promoting higher educating and intellectual development. In your view, how can women who do not wish to become intellectuals participate in the feminist movement?

Essay Topic 2

Essay on Ch. 1: The mainstream feminist movement.

In Ch. 1, the author goes into great detail regarding the weaknesses of the mainstream feminist movement.

1) Discuss the role of race and class in the author's critique. Why and how is mainstream feminist theory classist and racist? Provide specific examples from the text.

2) In the second part of your paper, discuss why and how less privileged women's perspectives can alter (and have altered) feminist theory.

3) What is specific to less privileged women's vision and perspectives that more privileged feminists have overlooked?

Essay Topic 3

Essay on Ch. 11: Sexual liberation.

Sexual liberation comes across as problematic in Ch. 11.

1) Why is the (male-defined) idea of sexual liberation problematic for the author?

2) Does it seem like our contemporary society promotes sexual liberation? Give examples of why or why not.

3) In your opinion, does the author's promotion of freedom from conforming to one model, and tolerance towards all sexualities, go far enough in addressing, or redefining the male-defined models of sexual liberation?

(see the answer keys)

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