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Feminist Legal Theory Notes

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This is an extract of our Feminist Legal Theory document, which we sell as part of our Legal Theory Notes collection written by the top tier of Griffith University students.

The following is a more accessble plain text extract of the PDF sample above, taken from our Legal Theory Notes. Due to the challenges of extracting text from PDFs, it will have odd formatting:

FEMINIST

LEGAL

THEORY

*

*

Liberal

feminists

(sameness),

cultural

feminists

(differences),

and

radical


feminists

(subordination

and

dominance).


1st

wave

-

liberal;

2nd

wave

-

liberal,

cultural

and

radical;

3rd

wave

-


postmodern.

Key

concepts

of

FLT

1. Sexism

exists

in

society,

by

privileging

men

and

disadvantaging

or


subordinating

women.

2. A

belief

that

society

is

patriarchal;

FLTs

seek

to

analyse

the

contribution

of


law

in

constructing,

maintaining,

reinforcing

and

perpetuating

patriarchy.

3. Recognition

that

there

is

no

unified

FLT.


Liberal

Feminism

(sameness)

* Equality

for

women

and

men

is

to

be

measured

by

a

'sameness'

standard;


the

sameness

standard

considers

liberalism's

concerns

with

barriers

to


female's

progression,

e.g.

political

voice,

voting,

employment,

property

and


education.

* 'Equality'

means

an

equality

of

opportunity.

* Rights

for

women

are

to

mirror

the

existing

rights

for

men,

e.g.

there


should

be

equal

employment

rights

(but

not

necessarily

equal


employment

in

terms

of

numbers).

* Legislative

reform

by

itself

can

be

an

effective

instrument.

* Ideals:

liberty,

equality,

rationality,

autonomy,

individuality,

neutrality

and


impartiality.

* Liberal

rights:

civil

and

political

rights

with

a

base

in

a

'negative'

freedom


from

the

state.

* Assumptions:

status

quo

is

natural,

un--coerced

and

good;

that

a

universal


standard

of

humanity

exists.


The

Pornography

Debate

* Liberal

FLTs

lean

to

a

pro--pornography

position,

depending

on

the

degree

of


harm

that

they

associate

with

pornography.

* It

exemplifies:

free

speech,

constitutional

protections'

the

free

market,

an


individual

subject's

rights

to

self--determination

and

freedom,

and

the

erotic,


not

the

harmful.

* Ronald

Dworkin:

an

individual's

right

to

distribute

pornography

trumps

the


utilitarian

goal

of

improving

society

in

aggregate

by

banning

it.

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