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The Creation of Feminist Consciousness

The Creation of Feminist Consciousness

From the Middle Ages to Eighteen-Seventy

vonLerner, Gerda
Englisch, Erscheinungstermin 14.04.1994
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A pioneer in women's studies and long-term activist for women's issues, and a past president of the Organization of American Historians, Gerda Lerner is one of the founders and foremost scholars of Women's History. The Creation of Patriarchy, the first book in her two-volume magnum opus Women and History (1986)...

Informationen zum Titel

978-0-19-509060-4
Oxford
14.04.1994
1994
Buch (broschiert)
505 g
408
141 mm x 216 mm x 25 mm
bibliography
Englisch
A pioneer in women's studies and long-term activist for women's issues, and a past president of the Organization of American Historians, Gerda Lerner is one of the founders and foremost scholars of Women's History. The Creation of Patriarchy, the first book in her two-volume magnum opus Women and History (1986) received wide review attention and much acclaim, winning the prestigious Joan Kelly Prize of the American Historical Association for the best work on Women's History that year. Ms hailed the book for providing "a grand historical framework that was impossible even to imagine before the enlightenment about women's place in the world provided by her earlier work and that of other feminist scholars." New Directions for Women said it "may well be the most important work in feminist theory to appear in our generation." Patriarchy traced the development of the ideas, symbols, and metaphors by which men institutionalized their domination of women. Now, in The Creation of Feminist Consciousness, the eagerly awaited concluding volume of Women and History, Lerner documents the twelve-hundred-year struggle of women to free their minds from patriarchal thought, to create Women's History, and to achieve a feminist consciousness. In a richly documented narrative filled with inspiring portraits of women, Lerner ranges from the Middle Ages to the late 19th century, tracing several important ways by which women strove for autonomy and equality. One of the most remarkable sections examines over twelve hundred years of feminist Bible criticism. Since objections to women's thinking, teaching, and speaking in public were based on biblical authority--most notably, passages from Genesisand the writings of St. Paul--women returned again and again to these texts, in an attempt to subvert patriarchal dominance and establish their equality with men. This survey of biblical criticism allows Lerner to illustrate her most important insight--the discontinuity
In this pioneering study, Gerda Lerner documents the twelve-hundred year struggle of women to free their minds from patriarchal thought, to create Women's History, and to achieve a feminist consciousness.

She paints a series of fascinating portraits of figures who resisted patriarchal indoctrination, from mystics like Hildegard de Bingen, and Julian of Norwich, to women of great literary talent like Mary Wollstonecraft, and Emily Dickinson. These were the women who made individual, often similar, attempts to express women's thinking in male-dominated societies and which have led to the establishment of a now widespread feminist consciousness.
Lerner documents the twelve-hundred year struggle of women to free their minds from patriarchal thought, to create Women's History, and to achieve a feminist conciousness. Lerner argues that the millenia-old educational disadvantaging of women and their marginalization in the intellectual life of Western civilization retarded women's ability to comprehend their condition and to define their needs as a group. She shows the devastating impact on women's psychology of
notions of their innate mental inferiority, reinforced by generations of the teachings of family, church, and state. In examining feminist biblical criticism, Lerner illustrates her most important insight - the discontinuity of Women's History. The book also embraces the life and works of individual
women who resisted patriarchal indoctrination, from Hildegard de Bingen to Emily Dickinson.
Gerda Lerner has lectured and taught widely across the States on the subject of women's history and feminist consciouness. She has written six other books in women's history, including Women and History: Volume I - The Creation of Patriarchy (OUP, 1986). She is the winner of the Joan Kelly Prize in Women's History from the American Historical Association.
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