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»Die Töchter können ihren Brüdern nicht raten, wie geistige Freiheit zu schützen ist,
sie müssen allererst lernen, ihre eigene Sprache so zu lesen und zu schreiben,
dass sie durch ihren Sprachgebrauch jene recht abstrakten Göttinnen selbst schützen können.«
Virginia Woolf: Die drei Guineen

 

Historisch-kritisches Wörterbuch des Feminismus
Band 3
Kollektiv bis Liebe
Herausgegeben und eingeleitet von Frigga Haug
im Auftrag des Institut für Kritische Theorie
ISBN 978-3-86754-315-6· 400 Seiten · 23 EUR
Details

Historisch-kritisches Wörterbuch des Feminismus
Band 2
Hierarchie/Antihierarchie bis Köchin
Herausgegeben und eingeleitet von Frigga Haug
im Auftrag des Institut für Kritische Theorie
ISBN 978-3-86754-311-8 · 360 Seiten · 23 EUR
Details

Historisch-kritisches Wörterbuch des Feminismus
Band 1
Abtreibung bis Hexe
Herausgegeben und eingeleitet von Frigga Haug
im Auftrag des Institut für Kritische Theorie
ISBN 978-3-88619-295-3· 400 Seiten · 23 EUR
Details

 

 

»Schlagt nach im Historisch-kritischen Wörterbuch des Feminismus, denn ›jenseits von Emma‹ dachten und agierten die Feministinnen über Themen und Aufgaben jenseits des Mainstream. Fragt nach!« Halina Bendkowski, Berlin

»Begriffsgeschichte als dialektische Verschränkung von Terminologie und Problemgeschichte erscheint mir als großartige Möglichkeit, uns klar zu machen, warum wir Frauen ständig und ungewollt daran mitwirken, diese bedrohliche, krisenhafte, paternalistisch strukturierte Welt zu reproduzieren Ursula Apitzsch, Frankfurt/M

»Dieses großartige Wörterbuch ist für Seminare in Politik, Soziologie, Philosophie u.a. unentbehrlich!« Sandra Harding, Los Angeles

»Hier wird ungemein brauchbares Material zusammengetragen. Das Wörterbuch erfüllt zwei Funktionen: Zum einen hilft es dem historischen Gedächtnis auf die Sprünge, zum andern ist es ein aktuelles Arbeitsinstrument zu vielen Problemen. Die Stichworte sind weit gefasst. Die grundsätzlicheren reichen von Feminismus über feministische Ethik zu feministischer Theologie und von Frauenarbeit über Frauenfrage zu Frauensprache. Dazu kommen ungewohntere wie freie Liebe, Göttin oder Hexe. Überall aber verbindet sich intime Kenntnis mit praktikabler Absicht.«
Neue Zürcher Zeitung

»Erfreulich, dass viele Begriffe die ökonomischen Aspekte zentral behandeln, es finden sich z. B. Hausfrauisierung, Feminisierung der Arbeit und Heimarbeit. Neben der Rückkopplung an die kapitalistische Entwicklung wird Geschichte als Kampf und Widerstand gegen Herrschaft und Bestehendes erzählt. Das Wörterbuch bietet Einführung in die Geschichte feministischer Diskussionen, Auseinandersetzung mit spezielleren Themen, Vertiefungsmöglichkeiten durch Bibliographien und Verweise auf verwandte Themen. Das Preis-Leistungs-Verhältnis ist unschlagbar – würden hier Punkte, Sterne oder Daumen vergeben, erhielte das Historisch-kritische Wörterbuch des Feminismus die volle Punktzahl. Lesen und Verstehen!« Phase 2

»Wertvolle Handreichung für das kritische Engagement in Geschlechterfragen … Zeigt an, dass eine zentrale, im Stichwort ›Geschlechterverhältnisse‹ nachzulesende Erkenntnis nach wie vor auch für die marxistische Forschung mehr Postulat als Zustandsbeschreibung ist: ›Kein Bereich kann sinnvoll untersucht werden, ohne die Weise, wie Geschlechterverhältnisse formen und geformt werden, mit zu erforschen.‹« Graswurzelrevolution


Wozu brauchen wir ein Historisch-kritisches Wörterbuch des Feminismus?

Als historisch-kritisches Lexikon des Feminismus, das aufarbeitet, was historisch gefordert war und warum; das nachzeichnet, welche theoretischen und praktischen Kämpfe gefochten wurden und werden; das Frauen in die Geschichte von Theorie und politischer Praxis einschreibt; das gegen bestimmte Entwicklungen antritt, sich engagiert. In handlicher Form, in einem einzigen Band kann man sich sachkundig machen über die Geschichte der Bewegung, die der Frauenarbeit, der Frauenpolitik, feministischer Theorien, praktischer Fragen wie Frauenhäuser, Abtreibung, Bevölkerungspolitik, über die Karriere des Begriffs Geschlecht, über Geschlechterverhältnisse historisch und aktuell, über Frauenarmut, Hausarbeitsdebatte, über häusliche Produktionsweise bis hin zu aktuellen und neuartigen begriffspolitischen Interventionen wie Gender-Mainstreaming usw.

International bekannte Theoretikerinnen haben feministische Literatur aufgearbeitet, die Kämpfe der Bewegungen, das Schweigen der Offizialliteratur notiert und so nicht nur feministisches Befreiungswissen dem unweigerlichen Vergessen entrissen; sie haben auch eine Arbeit geleistet, die für Studium, Bildungsarbeit, Frauenpolitik unersetzbar ist.

International Voices · Internationale Stimmen:

Sandra Harding (Los Angeles):
This is a splendid enterprise. The essays make available the thinking of influential scholars on the history and present positions, projects, and controversies in feminist thought that has been shaped by marxian insights. This collection will be a welcome addition to courses in politics, government, sociology, philosophy, and many other areas of study.
(Graduate School of Education and Information Studies,University of California)

Graciela Hierro (Mexico):
1) There is not one feminism but many. It concerns all women and many men interested or frightened by women‘s empowerment.
2) Substitute feminism for gender is not possible. Feminism is a political movement, gender is the theoretical arm of feminism.
3) The young questioners of feminism may not be interested, but there are many of us academic feminist, theoretical, also political who are interested. Feminism is an academical issue. Think globally: your country may be ahead in many issues, mine/ours is not. A historical critical dictionary of feminism is extremely useful for feminists and pre-feminists – especially the way you present it: easy to read and handle.

Sarah Schulman (New York):
Feminism, like peace and justice, is a great idea with no contemporary context. In order for something to come true, it must first be imagined. Despite the narrow range of ideas permissable in this historic moment, those of us who take the long few hold on to a vision of full participation and representation for all women. Therefore, any project that imagines feminism and describes it, ultimately creates demand for it. Thanks to the editors of this dictionary for contributing to this imagining, and the subsequent realization that awaits us.

Margrit Eichler (Toronto):
Das Unternehmen, ein Wörterbuch des Feminismus herauszugeben, ist so schwierig wie wichtig. Der Begriff des Feminismus war und ist umstritten – um so wichtiger ist ein historisch-kritischer Ansatz, der in systematischer Weise versucht, als Wegweiser zu dienen. Ein unentbehrlichen Beitrag zu unserem Selbstverständnis!

Janna Thompson (Melbourne):
Where are we? Where are we going? – There is no women‘s movement and social pundits say that feminism has had its day. But there is an informal network of activist women in many countries who are prepared to join campaigns to defend abortion rights or to bring to public attention the plight of women in war or under oppressive regimes. There are feminists, whether they call themselves that or not, who are doing their best to change the culture of their workplace; women who are engaged in political struggles of one kind or another. The influence of feminism is evident in laws which ban gender and other forms of discrimination, in the courses of many university departments, in the operation of government bureaucracies and the anti-sexual harassment policies which employers have been forced to adopt. Added to this are all the women whose lives and opportunities have been changed by the upheaval in gender relations in Western countries, of which feminism was both cause and symptom. Looking back on the changes in attitude and opportunities that have occurred in its wake, feminism has to be regarded as one of the most successful social movements of our times. But those of us who joined the women‘s movement with high hopes for revolutionary social change can‘t help regarding the present situation as a disappointment. Feminism hasn‘t challenged capitalism, or brought about revolutionary changes in the public sphere, and in many respects it has not made women‘s lives easier.
Neither self-congratulation nor despair is appropriate or useful for those who in defiance of current fashion continue to identify themselves as feminist. What we need is a critical reassessment of feminism, its history, ideas, accomplishments and failures. I think that the proposed historical critical dictionary of feminism would be a great contribution to this reassessment. Most academic presentations of feminism are content to describe the different forms that feminism has taken – for example liberal feminism, radical feminism, socialist feminism etc. The dictionary would present these, and other, ideas in their social and historical context and document how they changed in response to circumstances and struggles. This idea of feminism as something undergoing change and responding in a creative way to ideas and political conflict is what is needed by those of us who do not want to write an obituary for feminism but to see it as a theory and practice that retains the potential to change the world.

Rosemary Hennessy (Albany)
As the work of feminists continues into the new millennium, the need for critical concepts is more crucial than ever. Critical concepts interrupt commonsense ideas in order to make visible the history that has made them possible--the relations of labor and power, the forces of state and culture that shape the organization of people‘s lives. Critical concepts are fundamental to advancing the organized collective work of building alternative social relations. Out of the intersection of marxism and feminism over the past century has emerged an archive of knowledge crucial to that aim. In compiling The Historical Critical Dictionary of Feminism Frigga Haug is offering those engaged in the production of knowledge for social action and transformation an invaluable, accessible path into the legacy of this tradition. Comprised of entries by contemporary marxist, socialist, and materialist feminists from across the international community on issues ranging from Abortion to Witches, this compendium of feminist critical thought will be read and used across the many fields and social sectors where people are setting out to challenge existing social relations: from university based scholarship to community and grassroots work.
Like The Historical Critical Dictionary of Marxism from which the entries were selected, this is a rare and extraordinary gem of a book. As both a resource and an intervention into current feminist thought, it will provoke debate and advance the efforts of many groups and individuals engaged in the struggle to re-narrate WHAT IS in order to bring forward WHAT CAN BE.

Elisabeth Schüssler Fiorenza (Harvard)
This new project of a Historical Critical Dictionary to Feminism is timely and badly needed. I am quite excited about it not only because it will help the next generation of feminist scholars to get to know their intellectual history and to comprehend how much work has been and still needs to be done. I also recommend it highly because unlike other feminist dictionaries it takes religion and feminist theology seriously as a major arena of feminist struggles for change and transformation. Hence, I hope that it will become a standard work in critical emancipatory studies and will find a worldwide readership.

Ursula Huws (London):
What a monumental task you have taken on! Here are some of my thought on the use of the term ›feminism‹: It seems to me that the word is, first and foremost, a political one. To confuse ›feminism‹ with the idea of a single academic discipline is to make as serious an error as to confuse the term ›socialism‹ with ›sociology‹. Feminism can best be seen as a movement (or several movements) of women designed to bring about their liberation. These have sometimes been allied to other political movements (e.g. movements for national liberation, for political enfranchisement, for syndical socialism, for environmentalism etc.) but are not necessarily so.
In attempting to provide some political legitimacy for these movements and/or to understand the basis of their continuing oppression as women, feminists have carried out a vast amount of theoretical and empirical work. However it is a mistake to think that these add up to a single, coherent body of ›feminist theory‹.
To take only the Anglo-Saxon work with which I am most familiar, we can see that the concepts developed to try to explain women‘s oppression have arisen within a variety of different theoretical perspectives, which are not easily rendered compatible. For instance the concept of ›patriarchy‹ was developed by anthropologists, that of ›sexism‹ within the context of literary studies, that of ›male chauvinism‹ within psychology. Other theoretical work was grounded in the theories of political science (e.g. analyses of power) economics (eg analyses of the relationship between production and reproduction) and theology (e.g. Mary Daley‘s work on ›gyn/ecology‹). Important theoretical inputs also came from French feminists, grounded in structuralist or post-structuralist philosophy and psychiatric theory. Scandinavian feminists contributed theoretical insights, such as the concept of a societal ›gender contract‹, rooted in the classic sociological theory of Weber.
The importance now given to these academic ›feminisms‹ (which I would prefer to see as feminist insights into a range of different bodies of social and economic theory) seems to me to be a direct reflection of the retreat from direct political engagement in the last quarter of the 20th century. It doesn‘t much matter whether you call them ›gender studies‹, ›women‘s studies‹, ›men‘s studies‹, ›queer studies‹, ›equality studies‹ or anything else.
Feminism will be reborn when there is once more a generation of women who are made angry enough by their oppression to take political action to demand their liberation. Until then, it is imperative that the work of their predecessors is properly documented so that when that time comes they can build on what went before and avoid a fruitless relearning of old lessons.
This dictionary therefore serves two purposes: the historical one of preserving and making accessible the rich results of the intellectual flowering of second wave feminism; and the political one of providing the third wave with the inspiration and resources which will enable it to move forward.

María José Aubet (Barcelona):
I think that it is important to resituate the concept and reality of »Feminism« within its chronological context, thus recalling that it refers, in a global sense and above its different inner tendencies, to a sociopolitical critical movement, typically reformist, of midle-class, in post II World War western societies (from the sixties to the eighties) claming mainly a) a »normalisation« of their social, economical and political status in society, and b) concrete rights related to female sexuality, like contraception, abortion and control over own‘s body (in Catholic countries, like Spain, Italy and Portugal, also right to divorce). The basic message of that feminist movements was »From women to ALL women«, that is, rather eclectical, will little conventional class component (with some exceptions, thank god!).
I believe that it was and has been a necessary movement at that time, able to change important cultural references and gain visibility and voice, not only in the Western North, but also in the Western South (Spain, Italy) and the South (especially in some African communities). But in spite of some very interesting analitical and practical efforts, it was NOT a revolutionary movement nor a revolutionary theory capable of putting the whole System upside down. In fact, it has been very easily and very soon »recovered« and instrumentalised by the System itself, and incorporated into mainstreaming politics (local, national and European level). Indeed, within the last 20 years, a whole set of specific jargon has appeared in the West issued either by main political institutions and leaders (European Commission, national parliaments and ministries) or by women themselves, through their work in »Women‘s Studies« departments or Institutes at all levels, thus contributing to instituionalise »women‘s issues« and »feminism«. Concepts like mainstreaming, reproductive health, gender relations, domestic labour, parity and equal opportunities have thus conditioned women‘s politis and women‘s policies from above, and contributed to the institutionalisation of the movement, since this jargon, and its implementation, have helped to silence grass-root women‘s groups, co-opt women leaders, and present these so called women‘s policies as if they were real instruments to change women‘s lifes.
The motto of »Equal opportunities«, for instance, is a very old liberal slogan meant to avoid discussing and thinking »real equality« of social and economic democracy, since »Equal opportunities«, like parity, of mainstreaming, is nothin concrete and solid to build upon, but a very elastic and ambiguous abstract notion that leaves structural inequalities unchanged.
The obvious question would be today: Are we women, as such, capable of subvert substantially and overthrow global neoliberal economic conditions and structures? The answer, my answer, is NO. Because to overcome present structures a new »class« analysis is needed. And Feminism, and its interclassist discourse »From women to -ALL- women« is not an issue. I think that in spite of the important changes and personal development enhanced by past feminism among many women, we, as antiliberal and anticapitalist women, still lack the necessary strenght and theoretical bagage to produce and impose a deep structural change in social and gender relations. It is my personal view, of course, and I am sure that many women scholars will be in disagreement with me. But I understand that the answer is NO because, up to now, we women haven‘t been able to enhance or create a strong movement capable of interlocking together All the fragmentary and scattered critical analysis (pacifist, ecological, economic, political, educational, international, global).
Our task cannot be the same as in the 60s and 70s. Today it is not enough to change some laws, be present in parliaments o claim for sexual and personal rights. The challenge is much greater and global, and has become again a question of new »class struggle«. Today it is obvious that more and more women are active in conservative and extreme-right movements, and these women use vague notions and particular interpretations of »feminism« to promote themselves and their own careers, or to climb socially and politically to finally implement very reactionary and individualistic policies towards women (and men).
When exploitation, manipulation, control and abuse of finances and mass media, corruption, profit, and distruction of all social conquests are again the basic compoments of the new process of accumulation of Capital, feminism as we have known it is not enough. Instead of speeches from women to women, we need to address ALL THE SUBJECTS TO ALL THE EXCLUDED OF THE WORLD. In other words, we need to go back to Rosa Luxemburg, to Emma Goldman, to the texts of the Spanish anarchist women of the 30s …


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