Feminisms : controversy, contestation and challenge

Fawcett, Barbara; Cocker, Christine and Hafford-Letchfield, Trish, eds. (2022) Feminisms : controversy, contestation and challenge. In: Rethinking Feminist Theories for Social Work Practice. Palgrave Macmillan Ltd., Cham, Switzerland, 19 -36. ISBN 9783030942410 (https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-94241-0_2)

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Social work and feminism have always had a somewhat mixed relationship. There are clear influences, but also elements of contestation, with those working in the fields of social work and social care being as susceptible to interpretations and trends in popular culture as the rest of the population. In this chapter, I examine the development, impact and tensions of various feminisms. We explore the place of experience and the schisms brought about by attempts to incorporate the very different experiences of Black women as well as those from disadvantaged backgrounds into 'second wave' feminism. We consider the contribution made by postmodern feminism and investigate the influence of what has been termed 'choice' feminism on so called third and fourth wave movements. We also appraise what is sometimes and controversially called, Islamic feminism to consider the connections and disconnections between Islam, culture and patriarchy. Finally, we look at the effects of these various influences on social work in terms of current practice and future directions.


Fawcett, Barbara ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2116-9919; Cocker, Christine and Hafford-Letchfield, Trish