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Women and Socialism: Essays on Women's Liberation

3.9  ·  Rating details ·  120 Ratings  ·  9 Reviews
Thirty years have passed since the heyday of the women’s liberation struggle, yet women remain second-class citizens. Feminism has shifted steadily rightward since the 1960s. This collection of essays examines these issues from a Marxist perspective, badly needed today.

Women and Socialism locates the source of women’s oppression in class society, arguing that only a moveme
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Paperback, 222 pages
Published May 1st 2005 by Haymarket Books
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Holly
Feb 13, 2012 rated it liked it
The best essays are 'What happened to feminism?" which traces mainstream (white, middle-class) feminism's increasingly reactionary politics since the 1970s, and 'Women and Islam' which explores the racist imperialist motivations behind France's banning of the veil, and explores the historical oppression of women in Islam and Christianity. This would be a good introductory text. I think some of her arguments are too simplistic. For example, I don't agree with her characterization of McKinnon as a ...more
Steffi
Oct 28, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2017
Despite the fact that nowadays nearly 99 per cent of dudes on OK Cupid are selfstylized 'intersectional feminists' (give me a f break, guys!), it is still critical to actually understand the tricky relationship between sex, race and class in late capitalism (way beyond secondary front debates). If you remove these linkages you end up precisely with the conceptually bankrupt white middle class/ UN/ Hillary Clinton notion of 'women's empowerment' and a shallow, repetitive critique of 'gender norms ...more
Umut E. B. (Kareler ve Sayfalar)
Rus Devrimi içinde kadının konumu, kadın haklarının kazanımı (ancak Stalin'le beraber tekrar kaybedilmesi), Marx'ın kadın sorununu ele alışında feministlere eksik gelen noktalar gibi konuları irdelediği son bölümde Smith, özellikle Lev Troçki'den yaptığı alıntılarla kadına verilen önemin altını sıklıkla çiziyor ve bir yerde de Marksist feminizme yöneltilen eleştirilere cevap veriyor.
Kitap hakkındaki yazımın tamamını blog'umda bulabilirsiniz.
Steve
Jan 29, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: feminism
I think this is an excellent book. Every essay was interesting and informative. Smith gives well reasoned arguments for her positions, is quick to denounce the non-action of groups like NOW when it comes to losing the PR war in the abortion debate, and even got me rethinking my position on the hijab.

Smith is a Marxist through and through, and while I am not quite ready to drink that particular Kool-Aid, I find many of the arguments compelling. Perhaps my biggest stumbling block is that Marxism s
...more
Eric Phetteplace
Jan 29, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: philosophy
Disclaimer: I only read about half of this book. But I did appreciate what I read, particularly the opening chapter with its elucidation of Engel's "The Origin of the Family, Private Property, and the State" and the theory that gender oppression arose from class society and not some ill-defined will to violence ingrained in men. My only complaint was that, even in the bit I read, there was some significant overlap, with quotes and passages being repeated. A fairly common problem with collections ...more
AJ
Apr 08, 2010 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars

I really liked the analysis in this book, but could have lived without the author lamenting that "feminists" aren't doing enough to change the capitalist status quo. Certainly, mainstream feminist organizations were co-opted into the capitalist movement ages ago, but there are plenty of radical organizations and individual women who have been fighting back.
Dan Sharber
Jun 06, 2008 rated it it was amazing
a marxist explanation of women's struggles past present a future and how we can win a society based on equality. it is a little dated and could use some updating in light of the recent activity around rape and abortion rights. everything in this book is still super relevant and by updating i do not mean editing what is there but expanding the book with additional chapters/essays.
Lizzy
Nov 04, 2007 rated it really liked it
Makes a good reference point for understanding why the world works the way it does.
Tom
May 13, 2007 rated it really liked it
Shelves: politics
Sharon Smith's book is a great exposition of the essentials of Marxist feminism. Very useful for socialists and all activists in the struggle for women's liberation.
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Sharon Smith (born 1956) is an American socialist writer and activist.

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More about Sharon Smith