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date: 23 July 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter considers the development of feminist literary theory and feminist criticism in the academic context in Canada in the “second wave” of feminism in North America. Situating the emergence of this category of feminist writing in relation to broader social and intellectual movements for women’s rights, the chapter undertakes to demonstrate that theory and criticism are forms of activism for social justice and gender equality. The chapter thus traces the development of academic feminist literary theory and criticism with reference less to longer intellectual histories of influence than to the forms, genres, and media of the presentation, publication, and circulation of feminist writing. Noting the mutually engaged and richly generative work of feminism in French and English Canada, the chapter suggests that the multiple categories of feminist writing produced in these contexts mark the important place of “second-wave” Canadian feminist theory and criticism in twentieth-century histories of feminism.

Keywords: feminist literary theory, feminist criticism, feminist writing, “second-wave” feminism, twentieth-century histories of feminism

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