Pub. date: 2007 | Online Pub. Date: September 25, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412952637 | Print ISBN: 9780761923879 | Online ISBN: 9781412952637| Publisher:Sage Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Critical Feminist Theory
Stephanie M. Wildman
The phrase critical feminist theory evokes multiple theories and meanings. In some usages, the term critical modifies feminist theory , suggesting that all feminist theory criticizes the misogynistic view of women that characterizes society. Feminist theory, viewed in this light, is a critical theory representing the radical notion that women are people. Other uses of the term critical feminist theory suggest that feminist theory has not gone far enough to counter women's societal subordination. In this view, critical feminist theory encompasses many “modified” feminist theories, indicating a multiplicity of theories critical of feminism itself. These theories push feminist theory to recognize a deeper radicalism. Feminist theory and critical feminist theories share many central assumptions. All feminist theories make gender a central focus of inquiry, asking “the woman question.” The “woman question” identifies and challenges the omission of women and their needs from the analysis of any societal issue. These theories ...