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The Biopolitics of Gender$
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Jemima Repo

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780190256913

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190256913.001.0001

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Feminism and Biopolitics

Feminism and Biopolitics

Complicities and Countermovements

(p.158) Chapter 6 Feminism and Biopolitics
The Biopolitics of Gender

Jemima Repo

Oxford University Press

This chapter addresses the problems that the genealogy of gender poses for feminist theory and politics, arguing that gender is an important element facilitating the fusion of feminist ideas with neoliberal practices and rationalities. It calls for reassessing the value of the idea of gender itself to feminist politics. Through rereadings of Mary Wollstonecraft and Charlotte Perkins Gilman, the chapter highlights the shared genealogy of feminism and liberal governmentality, where feminism can be understood as a countermovement to liberalism, but one that has consistently taken up liberal discourses in the struggle against the oppressions of liberalism, discarding them later for other more timely ones. The chapter then initiates an exegesis of Valerie Solanas’s SCUM Manifesto to consider the extent to which the gender concept is still useful or necessary for feminist theory and politics.

Keywords:   feminist theory, feminist politics, neoliberal practices, liberalism, liberal discourses, countermovement

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