Medieval feminism in Middle English studies: a retrospective

Robertson, E.A. (2007) Medieval feminism in Middle English studies: a retrospective. Tulsa Studies in Women's Literature, 26(1), pp. 67-80.

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The New Chaucer Society presented a panel at their international meeting this last July on gender and historicism. As an audience participant, I was struck by the fact that despite the twenty-year flourishing existence of the Society for Medieval Feminist Scholarship, with one exception, neither it nor the word "feminism" were mentioned by the panel or in the discussion that followed. Furthermore, a number of panelists expressed their discomfort with identifying themselves with women's studies despite their personal dedication to feminism, a discomfort I, despite my own commitment to feminist historicist study, to some extent share. While dismayed by the potential of the so-called postfeminist age to eclipse the study of women altogether, I, at the same time, do not wish to rehash arguments and positions that feminists have painfully and productively deconstructed through feminist theory's various phases. Feminist medievalists working in medieval English studies have reached an impasse that I hope we can overcome: how can we bring feminist questions into the center of critical inquiry without seeming to be harping on old news?

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Robertson, Professor Elizabeth
Authors: Robertson, E.A.
Subjects:P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General)
College/School:College of Arts & Humanities > School of Critical Studies > English Language and Linguistics
Journal Name:Tulsa Studies in Women's Literature

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