Gender and Agency

Reconfiguring the Subject in Feminist and Social Theory


Author: Lois McNay

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 0745667872

Category: Social Science

Page: 196

View: 9479

This book reassesses theories of agency and gender identity against the backdrop of changing relations between men and women in contemporary societies. McNay argues that recent thought on the formation of the modern subject offers a one-sided or negative account of agency, which underplays the creative dimension present in the responses of individuals to changing social relations. An understanding of this creative element is central to a theory of autonomous agency, and also to an explanation of the ways in which women and men negotiate changes within gender relations. In exploring the implications of this idea of agency for a theory of gender identity, McNay brings together the work of leading feminist theorists - such as Judith Butler and Nancy Fraser - with the work of key continental social theorists. In particular, she examines the work of Pierre Bourdieu, Paul Ricoeur and Cornelius Castoriadis, each of whom has explored different aspects of the idea of the creativity of action. McNay argues that their thought has interesting implications for feminist ideas of gender, but these have been relatively neglected partly because of the huge influence of the work of Michel Foucault and Jacques Lacan in this area. She argues that, despite its suggestive nature, feminist theory must move away from the ideas of Foucault and Lacan if a more substantive account of agency is to be introduced into ideas of gender identity. This book will appeal to students and scholars in the areas of social theory, gender studies and feminist theory.

Gazing at Welfare, Gender and Agency in Post-socialist Countries


Author: Maija Jäppinen,Meri Kulmala,Aino Saarinen

Publisher: Cambridge Scholars Publishing

ISBN: 1443826138

Category: Social Science

Page: 360

View: 5051

The volume presents a new and unique view of welfare in Russia and Eastern European countries from an intersectional perspective of welfare, gender and agency. Since the collapse of socialism, the welfare structures of the post-socialist states have experienced large and rapid changes. The discussions on the reforming welfare models serve as the integrating theme for the volume. The authors discuss past and current developments and make comparisons in time and space–between the early 1990s and late 2000s and between post-socialist and transitional countries. Welfare and political democratization are analyzed on the one hand as structures and processes and on the other hand as cultural meanings and through agency, which all are strongly gendered. Macro-level analyses and in-depth case studies by scholars from different countries and disciplines provide a wide and multilayered picture of welfare developments and gendered practices of social services, caregiving and civic activism, among others. Special attention is given to research methodologies, particularly on fieldwork and micro-level understanding of the related topics. The contributors come from social and political sciences and from both former socialist and “Western” countries – from Russia and Slovenia as well as the US, the UK, Germany and Finland. In their studies, the authors examine various regions of Russia and other post-socialist countries, such as the Czech Republic, Romania, Moldova and Slovenia.

Provoking Agents

Gender and Agency in Theory and Practice


Author: Judith Kegan Gardiner

Publisher: University of Illinois Press

ISBN: 9780252064180

Category: Social Science

Page: 342

View: 6582

"A major contribution in women's studies and in other disciplines dealing with issues of agency. The authors raise issues that are very important . . . and they raise them as they must be raised--by bridging theory and action." -- Kathryn Pine Addelson, author of Moral Passages: Toward a Collectivist Moral Theory Both the women's liberation movement and those who have studied it characterize agency as the capacity to make change in individual consciousness, personal lives, and society. The seventeen contributors to Provoking Agents explore whether--and how--feminist theory, writing, and other social practices can help readers move beyond seeing women as a powerless group to effecting changes in their own lives and, ultimately, becoming social activists. Topics in this multi-disciplinary collection range from maternal surrogacy to writing, from consciousness-raising to AIDS activism, from pornography to local organizing

Women Out of Place

The Gender of Agency and the Race of Nationality


Author: Brackette Williams

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1135234833

Category: Social Science

Page: 290

View: 5262

These essays investigate the links between agency and race with regard to constructions of masculinity and femininity among radical groups resisting varied forms of political and economic domination. ********************************************************* * Building on the work of anthropologists, historians, sociologists, literary critics, and feminist philosophers of science, the essays in Women Out of Place: the Gender of Agency and Race of Nationality investigate the links between agency and race for what they reveal about constructions of masculinity and femininity and patterns of domesticity among groups seeking to resist varied forms of political and economic domination through a subnational ideology of racial and cultural redemption.

Gender in Ancient Cyprus

Narratives of Social Change on a Mediterranean Island


Author: Diane R. Bolger

Publisher: Rowman Altamira

ISBN: 9780759104303

Category: Social Science

Page: 269

View: 9547

Gender in Ancient Cyprus examines some of the fundamental facets of gender as they intersect with the dynamics of social, political, and economic change in Cyprus, beginning with the earliest traces of human habitation on the island to the final phases of the Bronze Age. The book closely analyzes gender as it relates to the domestic space, technology and labor, ritual and social identity, and the roles of children, as well as the practices of modern day Near Eastern archaeology and the roles of women in it. Visit our website for sample chapters!

Gender, Ethnicity and Political Agency

South Asian Women Organizing


Author: Shaminder Takhar

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1135009619

Category: Social Science

Page: 246

View: 7865

This book examines how South Asian women’s collective agency is operationalized through civic organizations in the UK. Drawing on black feminist theory and third world feminism, it shows the complexity of political agency and its relationship to identity and subjectivity, and uses empirical research to demonstrate how women are empowered to resist domination. The historically racialized image of the South Asian woman as lacking in political agency is challenged through their long history of activism on the Indian subcontinent. The creation of "critical spaces" by South Asian women in the diaspora places them as active agents who have successfully influenced social policy on important issues such as forced marriage, domestic violence and sexuality. The engagement with the empirical data demonstrates the significance and impact of race, racism, sexism and religion on the lives of the women. The book brings to the fore the pursuit of equality, rights and justice, including multiculturalism and the often debated emancipatory role of religion.

Gender, Agency, and Coercion


Author: S. Madhok,A. Phillips,K. Wilson,Clare Hemmings

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 1137295619

Category: Social Science

Page: 289

View: 8985

Drawing on recent feminist discussions, this collection critically reassesses ideas about agency, exploring the relationship between agency and coercion in greater depth and across a range of disciplinary perspectives and ethical contexts.

Gender, Agency and Change

Anthropological Perspectives


Author: Victoria Goddard

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 113458573X

Category: Social Science

Page: 304

View: 8044

In response to global change, people create new opportunities and conditions, and in their responses they are influenced by both gender and age. In Gender, Agency and Change the contributors illustrate the complexities involved in the constitution and performance of agency. Such agency may be reflected in strategies of accommodation and adaption that can nevertheless produce new institutional arrangements. Alternatively, they may be directed towards the outright rejection of these processes. The cases examined in this volume explore the ways in which different subjects engage in the reformulation of spaces, roles and identities, redefining the boundaries between, and the content of, the 'public' and the 'private'. The examples also provide an account of how gendered discourses are deployed to convey new meanings, a new sense of place and time, confirming or challenging ideas of 'tradition' and 'modernity'. This collection will be of particular interest to students of anthropology and gender studies.

Framing the Rape Victim

Gender and Agency Reconsidered


Author: Carine M. Mardorossian

Publisher: Rutgers University Press

ISBN: 0813572142

Category: Social Science

Page: 178

View: 4004

In recent years, members of legal, law enforcement, media and academic circles have portrayed rape as a special kind of crime distinct from other forms of violence. In Framing the Rape Victim, Carine M. Mardorossian argues that this differential treatment of rape has exacerbated the ghettoizing of sexual violence along gendered lines and has repeatedly led to women’s being accused of triggering, if not causing, rape through immodest behavior, comportment, passivity, or weakness. Contesting the notion that rape is the result of deviant behaviors of victims or perpetrators, Mardorossian argues that rape saturates our culture and defines masculinity’s relation to femininity, both of which are structural positions rather than biologically derived ones. Using diverse examples throughout, Mardorossian draws from Hollywood film and popular culture to contemporary women’s fiction and hospitalized birth emphasizing that the position of dominant masculinity can be occupied by men, women, or institutions, while structural femininity is a position that may define and subordinate men, minorities, and other marginalized groups just as effectively as it does women. Highlighting the legacies of the politically correct debates of the 1990s and the terrorist attacks of 9/11, the book illustrates how the framing of the term “victim” has played a fundamental role in constructing notions of agency that valorize autonomy and support exclusionary, especially masculine, models of American selfhood. The gendering of rape, including by well-meaning, sometimes feminist, voices that claim to have victims’ best interests at heart, ultimately obscures its true role in our culture. Both a critical analysis and a call to action, Framing the Rape Victim shows that rape is not a special interest issue that pertains just to women but a pervasive one that affects our society as a whole.

Beyond the Stars: Themes and ideologies in American popular film


Author: Paul Loukides,Linda K. Fuller

Publisher: Popular Press

ISBN: 9780879727017

Category: Performing Arts

Page: 310

View: 8832

The essays in Beyond the Stars 5 examine a small but important sample of the conventional themes and ideologies treated in popular film. Among the topics covered are family, social class, gender roles, politics, warfare, hedonism, and the 1960s.

Handbook of Gender in Archaeology


Author: Sarah M. Nelson,Sarah Nelson

Publisher: Rowman Altamira

ISBN: 9780759106789

Category: Social Science

Page: 913

View: 5076

First reference work to explore the research on gender in archaeology.

Gender Equality in Context

Policies and Practices in Switzerland


Author: Brigitte Liebig,Karin Gottschall,Birgit Sauer

Publisher: Barbara Budrich

ISBN: 3847407279

Category: Social Science

Page: 264

View: 3927

Gender Equality has not yet been achieved in many western countries. Switzerland in particular has failed as a forerunner in integrating women in politics and economy. Taking Switzerland as a case study, the authors critically reflect the state of gender equality in different policy areas such as education, family and labour. The collection of articles reveals how gender policies and cultural contexts interact with social practices of gender (in)equality. They also outline the gender(ed) effects of recent changes and reform strategies for scientists, politicians and practitioners.

Herself an Author

Gender, Agency, and Writing in Late Imperial China


Author: Grace S. Fong

Publisher: University of Hawaii Press

ISBN: 0824831861

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 238

View: 6507

Grace Fong has written a wonderful history of female writers participation in the elite conventions of Chinese poetics. Fong s recovery of many of these poets, her able exegesis and elegant, analytical grasp of what the poets were doing is a great read, and her bilingual presentation of their poetry gives the book additional power. This is a persuasive and elegant study. Tani Barlow, author of The Question of Women in Chinese Feminism In this quietly authoritative book, Grace Fong has brought a group of women poets back to life. Previously ignored by scholars because of their marginal status or the inaccessibility of their works, these remarkable writers now speak to us about the sensualities, pains, satisfactions, and sadness of being a woman in a patriarchal society. Professor Fong a superb translator of Chinese poetry, prose, and criticism has rendered the works of these women in a way that is true both to our theoretical concerns and theirs. Dorothy Ko, author of Cinderella s Sisters: A Revisionist History of Footbinding Professor Fong approaches the poetry of Ming-Qing upper-class women as a social-cultural activity that allowed these women to manifest their agency and assert their own subjectivity against the background of virtual and actual networks of fellow female poets. As the distillation of more than ten years of research by one of the leading scholars in this field, this work is a timely contribution that eminently deserves our attention. Given the inclusion of translations of some of the texts discussed, the book provides a comprehensive introduction to the reading of women s poetry of the Ming-Qing period. Wilt Idema, Harvard University Herself an Author addresses the critical question of how to approach the study of women s writing. It explores various methods of engaging in a meaningful way with a rich corpus of poetry and prose written by women of the late Ming and Qing periods, much of it rediscovered by the author in rare book collections in China and the United States. The volume treats different genres of writing and includes translations of texts that are made available for the first time in English. Among the works considered are the life-long poetic record of Gan Lirou, the lyrical travel journal kept by Wang Fengxian, and the erotic poetry of the concubine Shen Cai. Taking the view that gentry women s varied textual production was a form of cultural practice, Grace Fong examines women s autobiographical poetry collections, travel writings, and critical discourse on the subject of women s poetry, offering fresh insights on women s intervention into the dominant male literary tradition. The wealth of texts translated and discussed here include fascinating documents written by concubines women who occupied a subordinate position in the family and social system. Fong adopts the notion of agency as a theoretical focus to investigate forms of subjectivity and enactments of subject positions in the intersection between textual practice and social inscription. Her reading of the life and work of women writers reveals surprising instances and modes of self-empowerment within the gender constraints of Confucian orthodoxy. Fong argues that literate women in late imperial China used writing and reading to create literary and social communities, transcend temporal-spatial and social limitations, and represent themselves as the authors of their own life histories.

Enlightenment and romance

gender and agency in Smollett and Scott


Author: Robert P. Irvine

Publisher: Peter Lang Pub Inc


Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 224

View: 8846

This study places the novels of Tobias Smollett and Walter Scott in two critical contexts: the rise, from the middle of the eighteenth century, of the discourses of the human or social sciences; and the dominance of the novel by women writers throughout the eighteenth century. It argues that both authors, so often seen as paradigmatically masculine, in fact use the discourses of feminine romance or the domestic novel to figure authorial control over narrative structure. It suggests that they do so in order to combine utopian plot-endings, enacting a nostalgic tory ideology, with an essentially deterministic account of history and society, borrowed from the human sciences of the Scottish Enlightenment.

Gender and Sexual Agency

How Young People Make Choices about Sex


Author: Heather Albanesi

Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield

ISBN: 9780739134986

Category: Psychology

Page: 161

View: 3689

Gender and Sexual Agency considers how heterosexual Latino American, Asian American and white youth negotiate sexual encounters. Written in an approachable style for undergraduates, Albanesi presents intimate portraits of both young men and young women that illustrate how our experience of gender informs our willingness to exercise sexual agency.

Gender, Agency and Violence

European Perspectives from Early Modern Times to the Present Day


Author: Dr Ulrike Zitzlsperger

Publisher: Cambridge Scholars Publishing

ISBN: 1443853216

Category: Social Science

Page: 255

View: 1087

Gender, Agency and Violence: European Perspectives from Early Modern Times to the Present Day centres on literary, cinematic and artistic male and female perpetrators of violence and their discourses. This volume takes an interdisciplinary and cross-European approach – covering French, German, English and Italian case-studies from the sixteenth to the twentieth century and allowing for the exploration of recurrent themes. The contributions also facilitate an insight into how the arts and media respond to historical turning points which, time and again, challenge the link between gender, agency and violence for individuals and society alike.

Agency and Gender in Gaza

Masculinity, Femininity and Family during the Second Intifada


Author: Aitemad Muhanna

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1317183649

Category: Social Science

Page: 222

View: 1276

Drawing on rich interview material and adopting a life history approach, this book examines the agency of women living in insecure and uncertain conflict situations. It explores the effects of the Israeli policy of closure against Gaza and the resulting humanitarian crisis in relation to gender relations and gender subjectivity. With attention to the changing roles of men in the household and community as a result of the loss of male employment, the author explores the extension of poor women’s mobility, particularly that of young wives with dependent children, for whom the meaning of agency has shifted from being providers in the domestic sphere to becoming publicly dependent on humanitarian aid. Without conflating women’s agency with resistance to patriarchy, Agency and Gender in Gaza extends the concept of agency to include its subjective and intersubjective elements, shedding light on the recent distortion of the traditional gender order and the reasons for which women resist the masculine power that they have acquired as a result. An empirically grounded examination of the attempt to maintain the meaning of social existence through the preservation of socially constructed images of masculinity and femininity, this book will be of interest to social scientists with interests in gender studies, masculinities and the sociology of the family.

Gender, Agency and War

The Maternalized Body in US Foreign Policy


Author: Tina Managhan

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1136454527

Category: Political Science

Page: 184

View: 7329

This book traces practices of militarization and resistance that have emerged under the sign of motherhood in US Foreign Policy. Gender, Agency and War examines this discourse against the background of three key moments of American foreign policy formation: the anti-nuclear movement of the 1980s, the Gulf War of the early 1990s, and the recent invasion of Iraq. For each of these moments the author explores the emergence of a historically specific and emblematic maternalized mode of female embodiment (ranging from the ‘hysterical’ antinuclear protester to the figure of ‘Supermom’), in order to shed light onto the various practices which define and enable expressions of American sovereignty. In so doing, the text argues that the emergence of particular raced, gendered, and maternalized bodies ought not to be read as merely tangential to affairs of state, but as instantiations of global politics. This work urges an approach that rereads the body as an ‘event’ – with significant implications for the ways in which international politics and gender are currently understood. This book will be of much interest to students of gender politics, critical security studies, US foreign policy and IR in general.

Exercising Human Rights

Gender, Agency and Practice


Author: Robin Redhead

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1135054770

Category: Political Science

Page: 186

View: 1654

Exercising Human Rights investigates why human rights are not universally empowering and why this damages people attempting to exercise rights. It takes a new approach in looking at humans as the subject of human rights rather than the object and exposes the gendered and ethnocentric aspects of violence and human subjectivity in the context of human rights. Using an innovative visual methodology, Redhead shines a new critical light on human rights campaigns in practice. She examines two cases in-depth. First, she shows how Amnesty International depicts women negatively in their 2004 ‘Stop Violence against Women Campaign’, revealing the political implications of how images deny women their agency because violence is gendered. She also analyses the Oka conflict between indigenous people and the Canadian state. She explains how the Canadian state defined the Mohawk people in such a way as to deny their human subjectivity. By looking at how the Mohawk used visual media to communicate their plight beyond state boundaries, she delves into the disjuncture between state sovereignty and human rights. This book is useful for anyone with an interest in human rights campaigns and in the study of political images.