Are feminists really angry, unreasoning, man-haters who argue only from an emotional perspective as some claim? Does the incessant repetition of this trope make anti-feminism and misogyny a routine element in everyday speech? And does this repetition work towards delegitimizing feminist arguments and/or undermining feminist politics? How do skilled feminist writers deploy affect to advance feminist ideas? In Feminismand Affect at the Scene of Argument, Barbara Tomlinson addresses these questions, providing a lucid examination of the role of affect in feminist and antifeminist academic arguments.
Using case studies from controversies in socio-legal studies, musicology, and science studies, among other disciplines, Tomlinson examines the rhetorics of anger, contempt, betrayal, intensification, and ridicule. She employs a set of critical tools—feminist “socio-forensic” discursive analysis—that will prove indispensible for understanding and countering tropes like that of the angry feminist. Moreover, these tools will advance feminism, which, she argues, is generated in and by arguments with allies and antagonists.
In an era of debates that generate more heat than light, Feminismand Affectat the Scene of Argument offers a timely provocation for transforming the terms of reading and writing in scholarship and civic life.
Insubordinate spaces are places of possibility, products of acts of accompaniment and improvisation that deepen capacities for democratic social change. Barbara Tomlinson and George Lipsitz’s Insubordinate Spaces explores the challenges facing people committed to social justice in an era when social institutions have increasingly been reconfigured to conform to the imperatives of a market society.
In their book, the authors argue that education, the arts, and activism are key terrains of political and ideological conflict. They explore and analyze exemplary projects responding to current social justice issues and crises, from the Idle No More movement launched by Indigenous people in Canada to the performance art of Chingo Bling, Fandango convenings, the installation art of Ramiro Gomez, and the mass protests proclaiming “Black Lives Matter" in Ferguson, MO. Tomlinson and Lipsitz draw on key concepts from struggles to advance ideas about reciprocal recognition and co-creation as components in the construction of new egalitarian and democratic social relations, practices, and institutions.
In this provocative book, esteemed scholar Barbara Tomlinson asserts that intersectionality—the idea that categories such as gender, race, and class create overlapping systemsof oppression—is consistently misinterpreted in feminist argument. Despite becoming a central theme in feminist scholarship and activism, Tomlinson believes dominant feminism has failed to fully understand the concept.
Undermining Intersectionality reveals that this apparent paradox is the result of the disturbing racial politics underlying more than two decades of widely-cited critiques of intersectionality produced by prominent white feminist scholars who have been insufficiently attentive to racial dynamics. As such, feminist critiques of intersectionality repeatedly reinforce racial hierarchies, undermining academic feminism’s supposed commitment to social justice. Tomlinson offers a persuasive analysis of the rhetorics and conventions of argument used in these critiques to demonstrate their systematic reliance on “powerblind” discursive practices.
Undermining Intersectionality concludes by presenting suggestions about concrete steps feminist researchers, readers, authors, and editors can take to promote more productive and principled engagements with intersectional thinking.