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What is Feminism?

What is Feminism?
An Introduction to Feminist Theory

First Edition

Other Titles in:
Sociology of Gender

April 1999 | 192 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
So what is feminism anyway? Is it possible to make sense of the complex and often contradictory debates?

In this concise and accessible introduction to feminist theory, Chris Beasley provides clear explanations of the many types of feminism. She outlines the development of liberal, radical and Marxist/socialist feminism, and reviews the more contemporary influences of psychoanalysis, postmodernism, theories of the body, queer theory and the ongoing significance of race and ethnicity.

What is Feminism? is a clear and up-to-date guide to Western feminist theory for students, their teachers, researchers and anyone else who wants to understand and engage in current feminist debates.

Feminisim's Critique of Traditional Social and Political Thought
Feminism's Difference from Traditional Social and Political Thought
Debates 'Within' Feminism about Feminism
Overviews of Feminist Thought
Starters on the Feminist Menu
Liberal, Radical and Marxist/Socialist Feminisms

'Other' Possibilities
Feminism and the Influence of Psychoanalysis

More on the Menu
Postmodernist/Poststructuralist Influences

Reassessments and Potentialities
Feminists Concerned with Race/Ethnicity


`Over the last three decades feminist theories and methodologies have become an increasingly complex as well as somewhat fraught terrain where ideas and egos alternately clash productively and destructively. This is an up-to-date and intelligent introduction to a field which remains a vital component of contemporary sociopolitical issues and debates' - Sneja Gunew, Professor of English and Women’s Studies, University of British Columbia

This book is good addition for MA and EdD students who are considering using feminist approach/theory. In addition there is clear explanation of the types of feminism in Western world.

Ms Eva Mikuska
Deapartment of Childcare, Social Work and Social Care, University of Chichester
February 5, 2015

This book is a fantastic introduction to feminist theory and I will recommend it for the reading list in the Feminist Therapy Module.
It is detailed, yet accessible and full of up do date and relevant information.

Ms Liz Swanson
Early Years Health and Care, South Essex College
January 5, 2015

A clear, concise and uncomplicated guide to notions of feminism. The writing style and language used is both accessible to the reader giving an insightful overview of feminism from an historical perpective and how it is percieved in 21st Century terms. Although I have researched many areas of feminism, I found this text book to be enlightening and thought provoking.

Mrs Angela Normanton
UCBC, Blackburn College
June 24, 2014

Covers an introduction to various sections feminist thoughts

Ms Emma Stevens
Centre for Lifelong learning, Hull University
October 12, 2011

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ISBN: 9780761963356

ISBN: 9780761963349