For our next meeting (Tuesday, August 10th, 5:30pm @ True Colors), we will read Andrea Smith, a reknowned scholar and activist who brings together feminism and American Indian struggles. We will read the beginning of her book, Conquest: Sexual Violence and American Indian Genocide (the foreward by Winona LaDuke, the Introduction, and some of Chapter 1) (download here), as well as a short article: “American Studies without America: Native Feminisms and the Nation-State” (download here).
for our meeting on 7/27, 5:30-7pm @ True Colors, we are reading three short interviews with Minnesota feminists from a book called In the Company of Women (download here).
Here is some info on the chapters selected…
Carol M. Robertshaw – coming to feminism in early 70’s, learning to change her negative opinion of women. Discusses power in women’s unity, consciousness-raising and radical feminism, media, divisions between men and women, positive and negative opinions of motherhood etc.
Mary Ziegenhagen – gaining awareness in white middle-class suburbia in the 1960’s. Making small strides and motivating one another by empathy/forming groups. Learning that “feminism” is not a dirty word.
Laura Waterman Wittstock – feminism clashing with race. Reluctancy of women of color to jump on feminism for fear of being further marginalized. Speaks of conservative patterns in the American Indian community. Touches on class/age discrimination/access etc.
This is just 11 pages of reading, so if you’d like more for the week, I’d recommend reading a great article on consciousness-raising groups — Building Coalitional Consciousness by Cricket Keating — or more of bell hooks’ Feminism is for Everybody.
for our second meeting, we read the first six chapters of bell hooks’ Feminism is for Everybody: Passionate Politics. feel free to use the comments here to continue our rich discussions…
Here are the readings for our next meeting (Tuesday, 7/20, 5:30-7:00pm at True Colors bookstore):
1) The Introduction to Feminist Thought: A More Comprehensive Introduction by Rosemarie Tong (9 pages)
2) “The_Gender_Knot: What Drives Patriarchy?” by Allan G. Johnson (11 pages)
For our next meeting, we are reading part of Susan Griffin’s Woman and Nature: The Roaring Inside Her (see below for descriptions of it). At our last meeting, we read up to page 62, so for the next meeting we’ll read up to page 121. You can download a pdf of the full book here. The time/location of our next meeting will be Thursday, 5:30pm, at Heather’s house (aka ‘the danger zone’) at 3500 Harriet Ave., Minneapolis.
“Woman and Nature is about memory and mutilation, female anger as power, female presence as transforming force. . . . Griffin has collected here the most apparently disparate materials [from lumbering manuals to poetry to gynecology texts] into an extraordinary collage which, for all the research and hard intellectual work underlying it, becomes an intense physical experience.”
— Adrienne Rich
“In Woman and Nature, Susan Griffin reveals the connection between feminism and ecology. Among the first to explore this subject, she probes the patterns of thought and behavior that have led to the destruction of nature, the oppression of women and the diminishment of both in the Western imagination. She elucidates the association of women with matter in European culture in the work of seminal thinkers from Plato to Freud, and shows how this prejudicial assumption is an influence on and a consequence of religious ideas, the development of science and reductive views of the material world. The book includes references to diverse events, the witch burnings, 19th century attempts to control female sexuality, strip mining, clear cutting and secretary pools, employed both as realistic examples but also as symbols of a culture that divides spirit from matter, emotion from intellect, nature from consciousness, while inventing ideas of masculinity and femininity that embody these divisions. Now considered a classic of both environmental and feminist literature, the book is at once lyrical, playful and unsparing in its critical perceptions.”