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date: 29 March 2020

Abstract and Keywords

The emergence of socialist, radical, and lesbian feminisms during the 1960s was a reaction to, and critique of, liberal feminism. Activists in this women’s liberation branch of the second wave strongly agreed that liberal feminism, with its focus on rights, choice, and personal achievement, was insufficient in its analysis of women’s status and condition. Each of the three strands differed in their analysis of the roots of the problem and in their approaches to social change. This chapter details “the turn” to socialist, radical, and lesbian feminism during the 1960s and 1970s with a focus on the ideological underpinnings, strategies, and organizations, examining the differences between and within each strand. Each of these strands faced varying levels of criticism for their lack of attentiveness to the diversity of women’s experience beyond the interests of a mostly White, middle-class constituency. The chapter concludes with suggestions for future research on these feminisms.

Keywords: radical feminism, lesbian feminism, socialist feminism, women’s liberation, second wave feminism

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