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◦ ‘Analytical’ feminists, such as J. Ann Tickner (see p. 76), have exposed the extent to
which the theoretical framework of global politics is based on gender biases that
pervade its key theories and concepts, drawing at times on the ideas of constructivism
and poststructuralism.

◦ Feminists have argued that the theory of power politics is premised on ‘masculinist’
assumptions about rivalry, competition and inevitable conflict, arising from a tendency
to see the world in terms of interactions amongst series of power-seeking autonomous
◦ First-wave feminism: The early form of feminism from the mid-nineteenth century to
the 1960s, which was based on the liberal goal of sexual equality in the areas of legal
and political rights, particularly suffrage rights.

◦ Second-wave feminism: The form of feminism that emerged in the 1960s and 1970s,
and was characterized by a more radical concern with ‘women’s liberation’, including,
and perhaps especially, in the private sphere.
Radical feminism: A form of feminism that holds gender divisions to be the most politically
significant of social cleavages, and believes that these are rooted in the structures of
family or domestic life.

◦ Liberal feminism: A form of feminism that is grounded in the belief that sexual
differences are irrelevant to personal worth and calls for equal rights for women and
men in the public realm.

◦ Androgyny: The possession of both male and female characteristics; used to imply that
human beings are sexless 'persons' in the sense that sex is irrelevant to their social role or
political status.
◦ Difference feminism: A form of feminism that holds that there are ineradicable
differences between women and men, whether these are rooted in biology, culture or
material experience

◦ Essentialism: The belief that biological factors are crucial in determining psychological
and behavioural traits.
Key assumptions of Feminism:
◦ Gender matters
◦ International relations are conflictual
◦ Patriarchal
◦ Marginalizing “feminine issues
◦ Highlighting and evaluating the role of women
‘Gender lenses’ on global politics
Unit of analysis
Nature of International relations
◦ Cooperation and Conflict
Principal feature of Int’l system
◦ Patriarchy
Nature of Int’l organizations
◦ Patriarchal
◦ Horizontally structured
Behavior of IGO
◦ Varied
◦ Reinforce and challenge patriarchy
◦ Feminism has had a significant impact on politics
around the world. Feminist thought has made women
aware of their rights and the possibility of improving their
lives. It has increased their confidence by revealing the
politics in their daily lives and encouraging political and
social participation. Women’s groups have succeeded
in getting female candidates elected to all levels of
government and altering legislation. They have also
made changes in their daily lives, on a community and
domestic level, and made significant steps towards
changing public opinion(Smith, 2007).

Heywood A, Key Concepts in Politics (Palgrave, 2000)

Griffiths, M, Fifty Key Thinkers in International Relations (Routledge, 1999)
Smith, K. (2007). Assess the Impact of Feminist Thought on Contemporary. Aberystwyth University.