Strategic Acts in the Study of Identity - Towards a Dynamic Theory of People and Place - Vaia Touna

Strategic Acts in the Study of Identity - Towards a Dynamic Theory of People and Place - Vaia Touna

7. Writing Women out of Women’s Movements: The Discursive Boundaries of Feminism

Strategic Acts in the Study of Identity - Towards a Dynamic Theory of People and Place - Vaia Touna

Leslie Dorrough Smith [+-]
Avila University
Dr. Dorrough Smith's most recent research focuses on the cultural significance of American Conservative Protestant rhetoric, with special emphasis on the Christian Right. Many scholars who study the Christian Right (NCR) often account for the movement's popularity and distinction by pointing to its absolutist moral positions, its religious fervor, and its selective embrace of seemingly anti-modernist platforms. Unlike other theories of conservative power that focus on the allure of such moral absolutes, Dr. Dorrough Smith's work shows how these absolutes are really not the defining quality of the movement. Rather, they are the byproduct of a certain type of rhetoric (which she calls "chaos rhetoric") that uses chaos, rather than order, imagery to induce persuasion and thereby secure social power. Her work focuses on the linguistic engineering involved in producing chaos rhetoric, and how such movements depend on the strategic manipulation of specific cultural symbols to naturalize and "sell" their political interests.

Description

Over the past several decades, various attempts have been made by feminist scholars to describe the activism of many international women’s groups as “feminist” even though such groups often heavily resemble many American conservative women’s groups that have often been labeled by the same scholars as “anti-feminist.” Using the work of Chandra Talpade Mohanty and Uma Narayan as a frame of reference, I discuss how some scholars of “global feminism” use certain rhetorical techniques to make this identity labeling possible in order to fit a series of specific political interests, even though such techniques may depend on a philosophical double standard to achieve the appearance of consistency.

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Citation

Dorrough Smith, Leslie . 7. Writing Women out of Women’s Movements: The Discursive Boundaries of Feminism. Strategic Acts in the Study of Identity - Towards a Dynamic Theory of People and Place. Equinox eBooks Publishing, United Kingdom. p. 117-141 Jan 2019. ISBN 9781781790731. https://www.equinoxpub.com/home/view-chapter/?id=35644. Date accessed: 23 May 2019 doi: 10.1558/equinox.35644. Jan 2019

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