vol 17 - 1991

This issue of Feminist Studies presents a group of writings exploring some of the forms, contexts, and implications of women's political activism, now and in the past. Joan Tronto's review essay of six books on women's activism concludes that there is no single political strategy that has consistently proven itself and that different historical circumstances present different (and sometimes limited) opportunities for change. Tronto poses a set of important questions, all of them germane to the essays here: What constitutes a social movement? What is it that scholars look at when they "see" feminist activism, and how does class operate in defining the parameters of their vision? Is a "radical fringe" necessary to sustain more mainstream progressive political accomplishment? What conditions might engender and sustain a consciousness that transcends individualism and privatization? This last question resonates in a second theme uniting some of these essays-women's struggles for a collective cultural identity even in the face of postmodernist interrogations of identity itself.



Ailbhe Smyth
The Floozie in the Jacuzzi

Molly Mullin
Representations of History, Irish Feminism,
and the Politics of Difference

Josephine Withers
Nancy Spero's American-born Sheela-na-gig (Art Essay)

Kathleen M. Blee
Women in the 1920s' Ku Klux Klan Movement

Lorrie Sprecher
Democracy (Poetry)

Joan Tronto
Changing Goals and Changing Strategies:
Varieties of Women's Political Activities
(Review Essay)

Patricia Moran
Unholy Meanings: Maternity, Creativity,
and Orality in Katherine Mansfield

Toi Derricotte
excerpts from The Black Notebooks, a work-in-progress

Regenia Gagnier
Feminist Autobiography in the 1980s (Review Essay)

Ann T. Allen, Julia Dietrich, M. Nawal Lutfiyya,
and Nancy M. Theriot
Response to Margarete Sandelowski's "Fault Lines: Infertility and Imperiled Sisterhood" (Commentary)

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