Feminism And The Feminist Movement Essay example

Feminism And The Feminist Movement Essay example

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The 1980 's were a time of formidable change for the feminist movement in North America, and one of the ways this can be most strikingly viewed is by looking at the splitting of the feminist movement over the topic of women 's sexuality. In contrast to the second wave of feminism 's early unity over issues such as women in the workplace, and reproductive rights, the end of the second wave, and beginning of the third wave can be seen to have been characterized by the definitive splitting of that unity over in-movement disputes regarding sex and pornography (Hall 255-256). This split can be viewed as having taken root in the 1980s (Hall 256-257), and, in that, William Gibson 's characterization of Neuromancer 's Molly Millions, published in 1984, can also been seen as a depiction of a sexually autonomous, although masculinized, women in-line with the values of the then just emerging "choice" branch of the third wave feminism.
The newly emerging ideals about feminism, and, more specifically, the still unfolding value structures surrounding women 's views on their own sexuality, autonomy and agency came about during the shift between the second wave and third wave of feminism in the 1980s. Claire Snyder-Hall states in her article titled, "Third-Wave Feminism and the Defense of 'Choice '" that the ideas surrounding women 's empowerment began to branch out to include marginalized women such as "sex trade workers" and, additionally, women who didn 't believe that their sexuality should be judged or persecuted on a societal level by feminism (Hall 258). According to Hall, 'choice ' or 'pro-sex ' feminism sought to validate the sexual and social agency of women, and it is 'choice ' feminisms very inclusion of marginalized women th...


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...arther and completely subvert them with Molly taking on the traditionally male role of cold, disconnected samurai, and physical force to Case 's physically weak but talented damsel in distress.
During the time period of her emergence William Gibson 's razor girl, Molly Millions, was a step forward in the representation of women in science fiction. As one of the primary protagonists within Neuromancer Molly 's role within the story, as a bodyguard and physical enforcer, is one that subverted traditional gender roles. While the criticism could be leveled that this subversion resulted in Molly being portrayed as a tough masculine character, rather than a tough feminine one, I think it could also be argued that through rearranging the gender stereotypes, rather than obliterating them, William Gibson was able to draw attention to the inherent potency these norms hold.

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