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ebock's picture

Middlesex/ Biology Conversation

My apologies for the late posting for the week, but I did feel like our class today had some significant conversation that I'm glad I got to hear before I posted.

I've been thinking a lot about our ideas surrounding the development/naming of third wave feminism. The idea that the words "feminist" and "feminism" have a lot of "baggage," as we said in class, or a negative connotation, feels disappointing to me; at the same time, I can see people's reactions to the word and it doesn't seem like it's reversible, unfortunately. However, it also doesn't feel right to be trying to create another word to make "feminism" more inclusive. It feels like it devalues all of the efforts preceding the third wave, especially the strides made during the second wave (at least in my opinion). On the other hand (I feel like I'm jumping back and forth, haha), it does seem like with the advent of scientific/sociological/etc. evidence pointing towards a spectrum/mulitiplicity of sexes and genders, there needs to be some serious efforts towards broadening the space within "feminism."

The only obstacle I find myself facing is trying to imagine what happens to the identity of those who really embraced being a "woman" and the efforts that went towards creating equal opportunities, fair legislation for women, and dislodging misogynist double standards? I know that that was the focus of much of the second wave, but is it really already completely defunct? Has the feminist movement already recreated itself or is there still room to be inclusive of those who are womanist/woman-identified? I really enjoy the idea of creating a feminism that works towards breaking down the strict male/female dichotomy that exists in our culture.

As for Middlesex, reflecting on our conversation in class today about the gender of the tone of the narrator's voice, if the narrator hadn't expressed early on that their gender changed from female to male, I wouldn't have been able to assign a gender to it. It didn't feel like there were any "give-aways;" I honestly didn't pick up on any gendered nuances (but that could also just be me being oblivious, I guess).

 

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