Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity Chapter Abstracts for Teachers

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Chapter 1, Subjects of Sex/Gender/Desire, Section I,

• Many feminists claim that developing feminine identity is necessary.

• Butler's thesis is that a well-defined and unified category of women undermines the ability to represent women.

Chapter 1, Subjects of Sex/Gender/Desire, Section II, The Compulsory Order of Sex/Gender/Desire

• Butler describes the distinction between sex and gender as being used to undermine biology as destiny.

Chapter 1, Subjects of Sex/Gender/Desire, Section III, Gender: The Circular Ruins of Contemporary Debate

• Some feminists believe that gender is the cultural interpretation of sex.

• Irigaray saw women as the negation of men.

Chapter 1, Subjects of Sex/Gender/Desire, Section IV, Theorizing the Binary, The Unitary, and Beyond

• Beauvoir and Irigaray disagree about the way gender asymmetry is generated.

• Butler believes that the definition of gender should be permanently deferred and left open.

Chapter 1, Subjects of Sex/Gender/Desire, Section V, Identity, Sex and the Metaphysics of Substance

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