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International Feminism Paper Proposal

nbarker's picture

I'm sad that we don't have more time to discuss international feminism, at the same time that I am glad that we did what we did during this course. If I were indeed to have written a paper on international feminism, I would have written on the position of Westernized culture as a marker of progressivism in both Americanah and Persepolis, and the issues of cultural imperialism that come with it. I would specifically focus on close readings of sections of Persepolis and of Americanah which discuss the main characters' childhoods. This is where I saw that ideals of Western and Westernized, often American, culture were seen as the progressive, the new, the exciting. There's the famous example of Satrapi's shopping for a Metallica tape in a "black market", of sorts, for instance. Yet, why is that seen as better? Could this be construed as internalized colonialism? The thing that the recent articles we've been reading remind me that patriarchy isn't just Western. Native cultures too have issues and problems with patriarchy in many forms. Western culture has ingrained patriarchy too, but because it can be seen as perhaps "more developed" and exotic in its own way, that our two female protagonists saw it as an opportunity for something different and better, with less oppression (even though it instead turned into a different kind of oppression).