- Topic: Women & Feminism
Women Talk about Church and Sexuality
What happens when a woman’s identities as a Christian and as an embodied sexual woman collide? What impact does a conventional Christian view of sexuality have on women’s sexual lives? Through conversations with thirty-six Protestant women, Good Girls, Good Sex explores how both religious values and communities shape women’s sexual experiences and the role of social class and race in this shaping. In their stories, the women reflect on how they handle conflicts between their religious views and their sexual desires, and how they satisfy those desires while simultaneously negotiating a conservative Christian message and more liberal secular messages. Sonya Sharma finds that, although the idea of the “good girl” is a common thread throughout the narratives, many of the women challenged the notion of “no sex before marriage” and saw their sexuality and insights into their church community as a means to challenge systems of patriarchy that persist in these spaces.
Rehabilitation in the Age of Risk
In recent years there has been significant media hype and moral panic over assaults and violent crimes perpetrated by young women. The governmental response to control crime and to provide protection to citizens has taken various, often contradictory, forms. The current research agenda on controlling youth violence in Canada, especially in light of provisions in the Youth Criminal Justice Act, is focused on risk assessment. The approach, however, ignores how “risk” is a socio-cultural phenomenon. Through interviews with young female offenders and youth justice authorities, Governing Girls examines female youth violence in the contemporary landscape of control and the increasing reliance on risk assessment tools to classify and manage youths’ level of risk. Exploring the meaning of treatment and rehabilitation in the age of risk, as well as analyzing the gender, race and class dimensions of the risk construct, Christie L. Barron questions the impact of risk rationality and argues that actuarial technologies depoliticize the process of control and further exclude and marginalize young female offenders.
Covering Crisis in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside
Missing Women, Missing News examines newspaper coverage of the arrest and trial of Robert Pickton, the man charged with murdering 26 street-level sex workers from Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. It demonstrates how news narratives obscured the complex matrix of social and political conditions that made it possible for so many women to simply ‘disappear’ from a densely populated urban neighborhood without provoking an aggressive response by the state. Grounded in a theory of ideology, this book argues that the coverage offers a series of coherent explanations that hold particular individuals and practices accountable but largely omit, conceal, or erase the broader socio‐political context that renders those practices possible.
Race, Gender & Power
This book contributes to the emerging field of white studies – an examination of the notion that whiteness is not an invisible category, but is itself a category of race. Looking at hegemonic white femininity in particular, the author examines the ways in which white women are coerced and compelled to demonstrate an allegiance to whiteness through their choice of intimate partners,sexual orientation, participation in racial inequality and complicity with white feminine beauty standards. This qualitative and theoretical research points to the fundamental role that white femininity plays in securing and reproducing whiteness as a location of white power and privilege.
Women Learning Politics
This book is an empirical account of political learning in social movements based on a study of a women’s movement in Arica, Chile. In the first part of the book the author tells the story of how the women of Arica organized to oppose the Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet. This gripping narrative, told through the women’s own words and experiences, paints a graphic picture of their courage and determination. The second part focuses on the political learning and educational processes that emerged from this narrative. The author explores three key themes: political consciousness, social movement praxis and how participation in social movements changes lives. She concludes by discussing the role of adult education in social movements. The book is illustrated with images from the struggle.
Women’s Resistance to Law, Culture and Power
This book challenges the idea that women are simply victims. It celebrates women’s resistance. It explores the moments beyond victimization. It argues that women do not stay crushed and broken, but move on, build and grow. The contributors to this edited edition celebrate the various forms of resistance: political resistance at both the collective and individual levels, legal resistance and resistance to cultural forms and labels. The editors argue that “Women-as-victim is not an emancipatory cry that encourages all women to join efforts in combating patriarchy. It is, at its core, highly analogous to the right-wing, conservative agendas that keep women politically passive, smiling stewards of male futures, still adhering to ‘men’s way’ in the boardroom and the bedroom.”
Entering the Culture of Motherhood
Becoming a mother impacts every aspect of a woman’s life. Often, it is other mothers with whom a new mother is able to articulate, debate and negotiate dimensions of her mothering experiences, from the physical/social aspects of pregnancy, through the daily work of new mothering, to the competing cultural constructions of motherhood. A diverse group of first-time mothers discussed and examined their experiences with what many have called “the mommies’ club.” Through interactions among mothers, information, resources and advice are shared; hierarchies of authority within the community of mothers are established; and women are given opportunities to explore and construct their maternal identities, for example, through the sharing of birth stories. This study reveals how essential, valuable and complex are mothers’ connections with other mothers, and yet also how wrought and ambivalent these relationships can be.
Saving Feminist Anti-Violence Agencies from Self-Destruction
The author first experienced a women’s shelter when she and her mother were two of the first residents in Toronto’s Interval House in 1974. Her research is drawn from that experience, her own years of working in shelters and sexual assault centres and the experiences of her fellow workers. Adams witnessed hierarchies that set apart clients and management, where an executive director and managers abused power in the same way she had experienced in the outside’ world of men. Perhaps most heartbreaking, she witnessed the most egalitarian, community-based, healthy and peaceful group of women she had come to know be destroyed by an agency devoid of feminist leadership, drunk on fear and dysfunction, which accused women of running a ‘cult.’ In this book Adams seeks to address these issues and find solutions.
Negotiating Power and Femininity
Prior to the 1980s, girls were completely excluded from research on childhood aggression, presumably because their ‘sugar and spice and everything nice’ made them averse to aggression. Not only were girls missing from research, their voices are frequently absent in current ‘girl aggression’ discourse. Despite this, ‘mean’ girls have received growing attention, especially in psychology. Besides conclusions that boys and girls aggress differently, much work has only offered a means of labelling, identifying and further problematizing girls’ so-called mean behaviour. This book moves beyond the superficial to explore the social context of mean behaviour. It examines the intersection among structures of class, race and gender in the production of girls’ aggression and draws on first-hand knowledge and experiences for a candid glimpse into a culture that raises critical questions about our ‘taken for granted’ knowledge of girls’ meanness.
Insights from within the UN
“The richness of Krishna Ahoojapatel’s analysis of the connections between women and the economy comes from the diversity of her engagements as a UN policymaker, an academic and an activist. Her analysis is therefore multidimensional. It is not a historical work, but captures four decades of changes in policies, in paradigms and in women’s lives. It is rare to see such different strands come together in one person and one book.” –Vandana Shiva, Founder/Director, Research Foundation of Science, Technology & Ecology, New Dehli.