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Feminist Anthropology. A Reader. Wiley Blackwell Anthologies in Social and Cultural Anthropology

  • ID: 2246278
  • Book
  • December 2005
  • Region: Global
  • 476 Pages
  • John Wiley and Sons Ltd
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This volume surveys the history of feminist anthropology, a field that was inspired by the women′s movement of the late 1960s and has since emerged at the forefront of efforts to make anthropology more responsive to the concerns of disempowered people around the globe. The field has moved from a central concern with women as an unproblematic focus to the study of gender as an analytical construct.

Feminist Anthropology offers students and scholars a fascinating collection of both classic and contemporary articles, grouped to highlight key themes from the past and present. Avoiding synthetic overviews, this volume offers vibrant examples of feminist ethnographic work. The thoughtful introduction to the volume provides context and discusses the intellectual "foremothers" of the field, including Margaret Mead, Ruth Landes, Phyllis Kaberry, and Zora Neale Hurston. Comprised of five sections, each framed by a theoretical and bibliographic essay, this reader focuses on the ways that feminist anthropology gave rise to important new concepts in anthropology.

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Introduction: Ellen Lewin..

Part I. Discovering Women across Cultures.


1. Belief and the Problem of Women and The "Problem" Revisited (Edwin Ardener).

2. A Note on the Division of Labor by Sex (Judith K. Brown).

3. Is Woman to Man as Nature is to Culture? (Sherry Ortner).

4. The Traffic in Women: Notes on the "Political Economy" of Sex (Gayle Rubin).

5. The Use and Abuse of Anthropology: Reflections on Feminism and Cross–Cultural Understanding (Michelle Z. Rosaldo).

6. Toward a Unified Theory of Class, Race, and Gender (Karen Brodkin).

Part II. Questioning Positionality.


7. Writing against Culture (Lila Abu–Lughod).

8. My Best Informant’s Dress: The Erotic Equation in Fieldwork (Esther Newton).

9. Feminist Insider Dilemmas: Construction Ethnic Identity with Chicana Informants (Patricia Zavella).

10. Contingent Stories of Anthropology, Race, and Feminism (Paulla Ebron).

Part III. Interpreting Instability and Fluidity.


11. Bringing the Family to Work: Women’s Culture on the Shop Floor (Louise Lamphere).

12. Procreation Stories: Reproduction, Nurturance, and Procreation in Life Narratives of Abortion Activists (Faye Ginsburg).

13. Ethnically Correct Dolls: Toying with the Race Industry (Elizabeth Chin).

14. Strategic Naturalizing: Kinship in an Infertility Clinic (Charis Thompson).

Part IV. Maintaining Commitments.


15. Dirty Protest: Symbolic Overdetermination and Gender in Northern Ireland (Begoña Aretxaga).

16. Women’s Rights are Human Rights: The Merging of Feminine and Feminist: Interests among El Salvador’s Mothers of the Disappeared (CO–MADRES) (Lynn Stephen).

17. Searching for "Voices: Feminism, Anthropology, and the Global Debates over Female Genital Operations (Christine J. Walley).

18. Imagining the Unborn in the Ecuadoran Andes (Lynn M. Morgan).

Part V. Interpreting Instability and Fluidity.


19. "Like a Mother to Them": Stratified Reproduction and West Indian Childcare Workers and Employers in New York (Shellee Colen).

20. Femininity and Flexible Labor: Fashioning Class through Gender on the Global Assembly Line (Carla Freeman).

21. Tombois in West Sumatra: Constructing Masculinity and Erotic Desire (Evelyn Blackwood).

22 "What’s Identity Got to Do with It?" Rethinking Identity in Light of the Mati Work (Gloria Wekker).


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Ellen Lewin
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