Charlotte Perkins Gilman is known as the first American writer who has feminist approach. Gilman criticises inequality between male and female during her life, hence it is mostly possible to see the traces of feminist approach in her works. She deals with the struggles and obstacles which women face in patriarchal society. Moreover, Gilman argues that marriages cause the subordination of women, because male is active, whereas female plays a domestic role in the marriage. Gilman also argues that the…
women actually are. By looking at the roles in which men place those fictional women, we can examine the “cultural ‘mind-set’ in men and women which perpetuates cultural inequality” (Barry 122). This representation of women is a main concern of feminist literary critics. Women characters in classical drama, such as Aristophanes’ Lysistrata, are not so much realistic, well-rounded female characters, but figments of a classical male imagination. The representations of the women in Lysistrata are unrealistic…
minded, and the French which is more theoretical. Feminist approaches draw from at least four areas of contemporary critical thoughts: historical (including Marxist), psychoanalytic, reader-response, and deconstructive theory. Feminist criticism therefore gains much of its validity from a variety of other critical approaches. The main concern of feminist literary criticism is the "feminist language." Elaine Showalter argues that "The task of feminist critics is to find a new intelligence and our experience…
Elaine Showalter coined the term gynocritics in her 1979 essay “Towards a Feminist Poetics.” Unlike feminist literary criticism, which might analyze works by male authors from a feminist perspective, gynocriticism wanted to establish a literary tradition of women without incorporating male authors. Elaine Showalter felt that feminist criticism still worked within male assumptions, while gynocriticism would begin a new phase of women’s self-discovery.
"Feminist Criticism". Anti Essays. 10 Nov. 2017
Feminist literary criticism is distinguished from gynocriticism because feminist literary criticism may also analyze and deconstruct literary works of men.
Archimedes and the Paradox of Feminist Criticism
Feminist critics of Shakespeare's works are often the subject of critiques—this is due in part to the tension that exists between feminist critics and critics of other branches of criticism. Jonathan Dollimore (1990) critiques various feminist approaches to Shakespearean studies. He explains and defends the approach of cultural materialism as a method of Shakespearean criticism, and responds to feminist critics of this approach. Lynda E. Boose (1987) traces the evolution of feminist criticism, particularly in regard to the treatment of marriage, sex, and family. Boose also discusses feminist debate over Shakespeare's own attitude toward patriarchy and the subordination of women. Feminist criticism is also the subject of Peter Erickson's 1997 essay. Erickson outlines the development of feminist criticism in America, and argues that there is a stark contrast between what he views as prefeminist criticism, before 1980, and feminist criticism after 1980. The year marks a shift, Erickson asserts, toward an emphasis in feminist criticism on culture and ideology. Erickson concludes by reviewing a new wave of feminist criticism which provides an expanded framework for viewing “otherness” in such characters as Shylock and Othello.
4 The feminist criticism of Virginia Woolf
Under the umbrella of “feminist criticism” there is a wide range of critical practices and approaches to Shakespeare's works, and each of these approaches has its own supporters and detractors. Due to the diverse array of feminist studies, many feminist critics hesitate to posit a general description of what, exactly, feminist criticism is. It has been observed, however, that feminist criticism reflects the assorted theoretical positions of the feminist movement. Common topics of feminist studies of Shakespeare include examinations of patriarchy, gender and sex roles, and the relationship between gender and power in Shakespeare's plays. It is generally agreed that feminist criticism of Shakespeare as a “movement” began in the mid-1970s. Richard Levin (1988) cites Juliet Dusinberre's publication of in 1975 and the Modern Language Association's special session of feminist criticism in 1976 as the genesis of the feminist criticism movement in Shakespeare studies.