It is vital that feminist theory and critical white studies be combined in order to form what I call critical white feminism. Both critical white studies and feminist studies are often limited in their ability to adequately address the complex interconnectivity of racial and gender privilege and oppression. In general, feminist scholarship produced by white feminists excludes and oppresses women of color and is therefore inadequate. I refer to this problem as white feminist racism and argue that white feminists are ignorant of the ways in which whiteness and privilege facilitate problematic theorizing. Unlike white feminist theories, the emerging field of critical white studies provides a foundation for exploring whiteness in a racist society. However, critical white theories often examine racism and whiteness without attention to gender, and are therefore inadequate, as well. Consequently, another approach is necessary for the development of liberatory theories that sufficiently conceptualize social change. As a solution to the limitations of both feminist studies and critical white studies, I propose critical white feminism, which encourages white feminists to interrogate whiteness and privilege. The purpose of critical white feminism is to a) conceptualize an inclusive and transformative antiracist feminist framework and agenda, b) challenge white feminist racism and white feminist hegemony, c) encourage open and honest communication between feminists across differences, and d) facilitate feminist solidarity and mobilization.
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Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)
College of Arts and Humanities
Dissertations, Academic -- Office of Undergraduate Studies;Office of Undergraduate Studies -- Dissertations, Academic
Length of Campus-only Access
Honors in the Major Thesis
McFadden, Caroline, "Critical white feminism interrogating privilege, whiteness, and antiracism in feminist theory" (2011). HIM 1990-2015. 1159.