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The majority of the male cartographers and the connection between marxism and feminism

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And indeed, only a few women actually did play an active role in the International 2and only male delegates participated at all seven international congresses and conferences. Other international organizations of the time, such as the League of Peace and Freedom, had numerous female members as well as women speakers at their congresses. However, the First International was not only male-dominated, it even showed an anti-feminist image, at least in its first years.

The Proudhonist leaders in France were strongly opposed to paid work for women and even any female activity outside the household, which is quite clearly in opposition to contemporary feminism. This position was at least partly written into the resolutions which were officially adopted by the first two Congresses of the International.

As a result of their position, most women activists of the time also did. How did they combine both feminism and socialism in their political ideas? What strategies did they use to bring together two political goals that in their time were mainly considered as being opposed to each other? In my dissertation 8published fifteen years ago, I discuss the political ideas of four women activists of First International: I had hoped my research would be somewhat outdated by now.

However, it seems that still little attention is being paid to gender issues related to the First International or to its female activists. And this is something which I myself can partly understand.

The majority of the male cartographers and the connection between marxism and feminism

I myself struggled with what I had found out about my protagonists. But even though those four women were highly involved in the movement, I could not really identify what they stood for.

What did they think for instance, about the common property of the land, the private property of the means of production, the founding of working-class parties? The only interesting thing seemed to be the fact itself: Only when I was ready to admit that — and it took me a while — I realized that this was not a banal observation at all. Why had they, being feminists, become members of the International in the first place? Victoria Woodhull 1838—1927 for instance.

  1. What is social reproduction theory in an excellent passage, vogel explains clearly the connection between class struggle and women's oppression. So, what can we make of this examples?
  2. By doing so she became acquainted with the most basic life problems of the lower classes — poverty, childbearing, exploitation, early death, rape and so on. The majority of the male cartographers and the connection between marxism and feminism Feminist theory essays examples that the theory is very limited in its connection between the biological and the psychological paradigms of differences between the male we can first understand what feminism is all about and see how it gets its inspiration from marxism feminism is.
  3. It is only in relations with others that we develop political ideas, and as valuable as texts, positions and viewpoints surely are, they are not what really matters in political activism.
  4. Egalitarianism, we must know, was not mainstream in French feminism at the time. Socialist feminist theory analyzed the connection between the oppression of women and other oppression marxism and feminism complement one another in many according to feminist theory, women are oppressed by a male-driven society marxist feminism, the intersection of the two.
  5. It is only in relations with others that we develop political ideas, and as valuable as texts, positions and viewpoints surely are, they are not what really matters in political activism.

By doing so she became acquainted with the most basic life problems of the lower classes — poverty, childbearing, exploitation, early death, rape and so on. Her shift into politics became possible when in 1865 she fell in love with one of her clients, James Blood, a soldier that had been traumatized in the us civil war.

  1. But even though those four women were highly involved in the movement, I could not really identify what they stood for.
  2. So, there were many intersections between the feminist protagonists during the Commune, but there were also differences.
  3. Socialist feminist theory analyzed the connection between the oppression of women and other oppression marxism and feminism complement one another in many according to feminist theory, women are oppressed by a male-driven society marxist feminism, the intersection of the two.

He was an active member of the reform movements of those days, mainly socialism and abolitionism. So, he helped Woodhull to bring into the political arena her experiences and political ideas which she had formed from her experiences. A few years after, she made a fortune by giving advice to multi-millionaire Cornelius Vanderbilt. She probably had insider information from some of her friends who worked as prostitutes for wealthy clients. Victoria Woodhull also paved her way into the organized feminist movements of her days.

Those mostly middle-class feminists, however, did not receive her with arms wide open. Victoria Woodhull openly advocated free love, the abolition of marriage laws, and in no way did she confine her activism to suffrage alone.

But when she managed to give a speech on defending female suffrage on 11 January 1871 in front of the Judiciary Committee of the Senate and Congress in Washington, the suffrage movement could no longer ignore her and instead made her its leader and spokeswoman. So, why did this woman join the First International? Why did she organize a demonstration in honour of the Paris Commune? We could ask similar questions about Virginie Barbet.

But she must have been a rather important figure in the Lyon International. It was at this congress that Bakunin and his friends split away from the Peace and Freedom League and founded their own organization, the Alliance, which would later join the First International. She published some interesting texts, on atheism for instance, or defending the International against Mazzini. Egalitarianism, we must know, was not mainstream in French feminism at the time.

There was still a rather big impact of Saint-Simonian feminism that had prevailed in the first half of the century.

Bringing Together Feminism and Socialism in the First International

The Saint Simonians tried to draw upon gender differences, for instance, they formed separate groups and structures for men and women and had a formal 50-per-cent quote for both genders in their leadership. Their argument was that because women were different from men they should have a voice in the decision-making process. So, some of them shifted their line of arguments to a more egalitarian approach, although Saint-Simonian convictions still remained strong.

She had also been involved in various feminist organizations and activities prior to joining the International.

Marx, Women, and Capitalist Social Reproduction

In 1869 she published her theoretical book Les femmes et les moeurs. But she did not evade conflict with either side. She criticized the feminists for not supporting social issues, but also those socialists that advocated militant and violent concepts of revolution.

In opposition to them, she pointed out the necessity of instruction and deliberation, and insisted that the end does not justify the means. She came from an entirely different background compared to the other three. Having been raised in an aristocratic family although an illegitimate childshe married a male ally so she could leave Russia.

In non-industrialized Russia the difference of classes still outweighed the difference of sexes by far. They were convinced that women could do everything they wanted, if they only had the determination and willingness to do so. In that, by the way, Dmitrieff was similar to Victoria Woodhull who due to her lower-class-background was not held back by bourgeois concepts of womanhood — drafting women as weak and in need of male protection — either.

Unfortunately, we have only some vague hints as to the nature and issues of those disputes. Dmitrieff was not at all isolated in Paris. She not only had support from the Marxists in the International but also was an old friend and admirer of Anna Jaclard 1843—1887whom she had already got to know back in Russia.

So, there were many intersections between the feminist protagonists during the Commune, but there were also differences. I am convinced that deeper research, particularly on those differences would be enlightening, but this has yet to be done. So, what can we make of this examples?

The majority of the male cartographers and the connection between marxism and feminism

What is the contribution of these four women to the history of socialism, to the history of the First International? I would like to put forward an interpretation that takes into consideration the difficult relationship between socialism and feminism at the time. And maybe some of them moved one step further and decided to not only shift their arguments but also their actions.

Perhaps this was the only way to handle the serious problem of revolutionary movements of the time: The early socialist movements in the first half of the nineteenth century still had a broad agenda, including not only economics and politics but also culture and explicitly the relationships between women and men and children and new forms of family and community-building. And for the labour movement it was no longer new forms of living, working, and loving, but higher wages, political parties and other means to increase the political influence of workers.

So, both movements were losing the broader cultural perspective, and consequently, feminism and socialism lost their common ground. In the end, they often found themselves on opposite sides of the fence in defending the interests of women or those of male workers.

Feminist movements became anti-socialist, socialist movements became anti-feminist.

  • Why had they, being feminists, become members of the International in the first place?
  • But she did not evade conflict with either side;
  • Having three main purposes;
  • Followers of socialist feminism critique traditional marxism for not making the natural connection between patriarchy radical feminism is based on the idea that the male-controlled capitalist hierarchy is the root 4 replies to 10 fascinating sub-movements within feminism j.

She would criticize and contest that stalemate, not by writing yet another pamphlet or founding yet another party, but proving it wrong in action. She would leave the politics of positions and standpoints and start — or continue — a politics of relations. Bringing a female body to places, where women are not expected and maybe not even be welcome, creates the necessity of mediations, that otherwise would not take place.

When we now take a fresh look at the texts and actions of those women Internationalists, we have a new perspective. What seemed inconsistent and weak in matters of positions and straight opinions, now becomes reasonable.

Those women did not want to carve out differences and standpoints. They wanted to keep social issues connected that in their opinion belonged together — socialism and feminism. They relied on acting in a concrete contingent situation, and therefore their positions and opinions would adapt to that situation and to the concrete persons involved. They did not act on principles, but on necessities in a given context. By doing so they also challenged one of the main topoi of the time: Pointing out contradicting interests was a spreading strategy in labour and feminist movements alike — men against women, labour against capital.

By contesting this topos, the feminist socialists earned themselves the verdict of not being radical enough, and they earned it from their fellow socialists as well as from their fellow feminists.

But it was not a lack of radicalism, but faithfulness to the roots of the social movements, to keep a broader agenda — namely the common good, that included all aspects of life and did not consider some as more important than others. There really was antagonism in the interests of women and men or of capital and labour. But by opting for the politics of personal intermediations, they found another way: Establishing relationships, staying in contact, instead of deepening the abyss by still one more sharp analysis.

Women have always experienced many changes in their lives, such as name changes when they marry, change of work when they have children and so on. And in her writing and speaking she does not aim at finding an identity but at finding intermediations. Intermediations between what she is and wants right now and what the other is and wants; the concrete other that she has to deal with in a given context.

That means negotiating, taking into consideration her own wishes and convictions as well as those of the other people involved, not in an abstract and theoretical manner, but concretely, here and now. It is only in relations with others that we develop political ideas, and as valuable as texts, positions and viewpoints surely are, they are not what really matters in political activism. And this lesson is, unsurprisingly, still true and relevant for social movements of today.