A collection of political, philosophical, and literary essays from the acclaimed novelist and French feminist writer Monique Wittig. Monique Wittig's first collection of essays centering on women's struggle for liberation from sexism and classism. These nine essays comprise a thoughtful and unique approach to the study of historical materialism and dialectics, and transverse philosophical, political, and literary theory.
Monique Wittig describes this collection as a focus on "lesbian materialism," in which she examines men and women as distinct classes rather than as "essentialist" categories. "Lesbians are not women," writes Monique Wittig, and she presents powerful ideas about how the idea of "woman" is socially constructed and used to convey certain images. It is not enough, she argues, to transform economic oppression because not all oppression is, at the source, economic.
Sexism will continue to exist even in a society where all people have equal economic opportunities. Only by transforming our thought processes, and in turn, our language, can we transform our society into one in which there is no longer the dominant and the dominated: "In other words, this means there cannot any longer be women and men, and that as classes and categories of thought or language they have to disappear, politically, economically, ideologically." Controversial and abstract, these are essays that challenge and provoke on both intellectual and emotional levels.
rile* is a bookshop and project space for publication and performance. rile* is into poetry, theory, choreography, artist writing and various other text based experiments. rile* organizes performances, meetings, launches, readings... rile* is the base word for silence in Láadan, a feminist constructed language developed by Suzette Haden Elgin in 1982. The language was included in her science fiction Native Tongue series. Láadan contains a number of words that are used to make unambiguous statements that include how one feels about what one is saying. According to Elgin, this is designed to counter language's limitations to those who are forced to respond I know I said that, but I meant this.
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