ERIC Number: ED240007
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Jun
Reference Count: 0
Crisis in Feminism: The United States and France.
Feminism is experiencing a similar dual crisis in the United States and France. One aspect of this crisis, the movement's alignment with other groups, is destructive, inevitably leading to the subordination of women's issues to "human" issues. The other dimension of the crisis, internal differences, is potentially creative, offering the opportunity to grow through discussion and group dynamics. In the United States, the first aspect of the crisis is reflected in the notion of second stagism expressed by Betty Friedan and others: separatist feminism has fulfilled its purpose and both sexes can now work together. The second facet of the American crisis is reflected primarily in undercurrents of racism and anti-Semitism within the movement. In France, the position of one feminist group, the "mouvement de la liberation des femmes" (MLF) is the focal point of the crisis. This group endangers the French movement in two ways, by claiming leadership of the entire movement while simultaneously fractionalizing the movement through self-separation. Within the MLF and among this group and others, accusations of reformism and radicalism undermine feminist objectives. Despite these crises, considerable insight can be gained by both French and American feminists through cross-cultural communication. In addition to highlighting different pitfalls, such a dialogue is essential to keeping the movement totally feminist. This condition, in turn, is critical to the realization of feminist goals. (LP)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: France; United States
Note: Paper presented at the National Women's Studies Association Conference (Columbus, OH, June 26-30, 1983).