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Valerie Bryson
in The futures of feminism
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Valerie Bryson

This chapter discusses recent feminist work on time, and finds that this represents an important contribution to political analysis which has had a significant, although limited, impact on mainstream political theory and practice. It briefly surveys self-conscious reflections by mainstream political theorists on the political significance of time, along with that of some sociologists, anthropologists and historians. The chapter discusses feminist ideas on the relevance of history and temporal location. It considers in more detail about feminist contributions that are concerned with time cultures and the distribution of work and leisure time. What feminism can bring to the concept of time is the double insistence that it is a central political concept and that its analysis has particular relevance for women. Feminism sees that time is politically important as a scarce resource alongside and interacting with status, money and power.

in The impact of feminism on political concepts and debates

This book examines a range of concepts in the light of feminist critiques, and considers whether they may need to be reconstituted in the light of these critiques. It assesses the impact of feminist debates on mainstream thought. The book provides a balance between 'classic' political concepts and those that are being currently developed by feminist theorists, and to reflect the interconnections between the various sub-fields of Politics as a discipline. Many chapters engage with the concept of politics itself and with the public/private dichotomy. Some chapters discuss issues around the state, power, care, difference and equality and the ways in which different aspects of inequality intersect. Others attempt to contextualise gender in relation to other structural inequalities such as class and 'race'. All the chapters engage in some way with feminist critiques of the dualistic thinking that underpins conventional and narrow understandings of the political, particularly in liberal thought. The book demonstrates that if feminist analysis is taken seriously, conventional patterns of thought and practice are significantly disrupted. It plays a role in encouraging all political theory students and academics to see that good, effective theory requires serious engagement with feminist ideas. As such, these ideas help lay the foundations for more genuinely inclusive political thought.

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Georgina Blakeley
and
Valerie Bryson

Until quite recently, Western political theory almost completely ignored women and gender issues; this neglect was largely unremarked, and there were few feminist academics in the discipline. This book aims to examine a range of concepts in the light of feminist critiques, to consider whether they may need to be reconstituted in the light of these critiques and to assess the impact of feminist debates on mainstream thought. It provides a balance between 'classic' political concepts and those that are being currently developed by feminist theorists, and to reflect the interconnections between the various sub-fields of politics as a discipline. Rationality, social contract and sovereignty were obvious choices as the starting point for much Western political thought since the Enlightenment. Citizenship, representation, democracy and democratisation and development were chosen not just for their centrality to political theorising and analysis but also for their centrality to the practice of politics today.

in The impact of feminism on political concepts and debates