Feminist Political Ideology

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Throughout history, women have remained subordinate to men. Subjected to the patriarchal system that favored male perspectives, women struggled against having considerably less freedom, rights, and having the burdens society placed on them that had been so ingrained the culture. This is the standpoint the feminists took, and for almost 160 years they have been challenging the “unjust distribution of power in all human relations” starting with the struggle for equality between men and women, and linking that to “struggles for social, racial, political, environmental, and economic justice”(Besel 530 and 531). Feminism, as a complex movement with many different branches, has and will continue to be incredibly influential in changing lives. Feminist political ideology focuses on understanding and changing political philosophies for the betterment of women. Studying how the philosophies are constructed and what makes them unjust, this field constantly generates new ideas on how these philosophies need to be fundamentally reconstructed. Liberal feminism, for example, was built around promoting economic and political equality for women. By arguing the older concepts of the split between public and private realms as a way to politically protect male domination of women as “natural”, and ideas about a women’s place in the household, came evidence that supported legal cases leading “to the criminalization in the United States of spousal rape” (qtd. in McAfee). Another completely different approach is radical feminism, which advocates a separation from the whole system, perceiving that the sexual relations between male and female as the basis of gender inequality and female subordination (qtd. in McAfee). Democratic femin... ... middle of paper ... ...nd Politics." Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East and North Africa. Ed. Philip Mattar. 2nd ed. Vol. 2. New York: Macmillan Reference USA, 2004. 890-895. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Web. 24 Jan. 2012. McAfee, Noëlle. "Feminist Political Philosophy." The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Ed. Edward N. Zalta. Winter 2011 Edition ed. Web. 24 Jan. 2012. Roy, Nilanjana S. "Ready or Not, New Dehli Gets a Women's Street Protest." New York Times 14 June 2011. Print. Tavernise, Sabrina. "Muslim women use Koran in quest for equal rights." International Herald Tribune 17 Feb. 2009: 2. Infotrac Newsstand. Web. 7 Feb. 2012. Warren, Karen J. "Ecological Feminism." Encyclopedia of Environmental Ethics and Philosophy. Ed. J. Baird Callicott and Robert Frodeman. Vol. 1. Detroit: Macmillan Reference USA, 2009. 228-236. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Web. 24 Jan. 2012.

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