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Feminism

Hi,

I am a student enrolled in a college in Georgia and this semester I finally had the opportunity to get into possibly the only feminist studies class that we have at this university. The class is called Who Stole Feminism? and when I signed up for this class I was expecting one in which the issue of what Hoff refers to as "gender feminists" could be studied from multiple viewpoints and that we'd be in an environment in which we could both agree with and argue against Hoff's statements. However, since the first day the male professor has taken it upon himself to only present Hoff's view of feminism So far we have been assigned two texts, both by Hoff, "Who Stole Feminism?" and "The War Against Boys." Not once has the professor challenged anything Hoff has had to say, and instead he takes it upon himself to add onto her views by rather abrasively mocking such women's colleges as Wellesley and Vassar; by frequently bringing up Andrea Dworkin and her misquoted statement that "all men are rapists" and "all sex is rape;" and generally looking at everything negative (and often misinterpreted) about radical feminism.

I would have no problem with this class if he were willing to look at the other sides of the issue, instead of simply relying on what women like Hoff and Paglia have to say. I am naturally a rather quiet student and the fact that the professor has set up a rather negative atmosphere for discussion has made it even more difficult for me to share my own opinion.

Are there any works that contest some of what Hoff has to say? I feel that if I had textual evidence backing up my views then I might haven easier time bringing them to light in class. I suppose the main problem for me is that with this being the only class on campus to address feminist issues, students are getting the wrong impression as to what feminism is all about If you have any suggestions as to how I can help to change that, Would be most appreciative.

Thanks.

Sincerely,

Kristine

 

 

Kristine -- that doesn't sound like a balanced class at all. When Sommers originally published Who Stole Feminism -- there was a group of feminists who got together to challenge her claims, which culminated in a great/well-researched article by Laura Flanders. The article was published in FAIR's publication, Extra.

I hope you can track that down -- it must have been circa 1995. In general, her claims were exaggerated and fabricated -- for instance, she takes feminists for task for over-stating the number of women who die from eating disorders, which she claims is only 100 or so -- but in truth if you talk to any medical expert on this issue, the reason for death is rarely listed at eating disorder and more likely heart failure, etc.... I hope you can find that article, because it is very comprehensive.

Let me know if you have problems and good luck with the class.

-- Amy