Feminist Literary Criticism. By Catherine Palomino. Definition.
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Feminist Literary Criticism By Catherine Palomino
Definition Feminist literature is fiction or nonfiction which supports the feminist goals of defining, establishing, and defending equal political, economic, and social rights for women. Feminist literature often identifies women's roles in contrast to men's roles as unequal to men's in status, privilege and power and the usually negative consequences to women and or men, families, communities, and society. .
History • Feminists of the 1960’s saw it as vital to combat the subservient and often negative images of women in literature to offer women a more equal stance in society. • History of Feminism: First Wave, Second Wave, and Third Wave Feminism.
First Wave Women were considered as: • Intellectually inferior. • Physically weak. • They were not educated at school/universities. • Could only work in manual jobs. • Refers to a period of feminist activity during the 19th and early twentieth century in the United Kingdom, Canada, and the United States.
Second Wave • Women could attend school and university. • Women did not receive equal pay for the same work. • Women may have legal rights but they are still treated as inferior. • Women should be equal to men in all respects. • Occurred in 1960-1980, came as a response to the experiences of women after World War II. It dealt with inequality of laws and pioneered by Betty Friedan.
Third Wave • Women seem to be more equal to men. The legal system is better at protecting women’s right. • These movement that called as young feminist emphasizing collective action to effect changes and embrace the diversity represented by various feminisms. They focused on a multicultural emphasis and strived to address problems stemming from sexism, racism, social class inequality and homophobia.
Feminist criticism and language • Feminists argue that women have to create their own language since the existed language in literature is dominated by male language.
Feminist literary • Famous works of feminist literature, both non-fiction and fiction, include Virginia Woolf's A Room of One's Own, • The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood, • Simone de Beauvoir's The Second Sex, • Susan Bordo's Unbearable Weight: Feminism, Western Culture, and the Body, Feminist Fairy Tales by Barbara G. Walker, • Alice Childress's Like One of the Family, • AzarNafisi's Reading Lolita in Tehran, • When Everything Changed by Gail Collins, • Sylvia Plath's The Bell Jar.