6 Pages

Editors' Introduction

This chapter suggests that historicizing and locating political agency is a necessary alternative to formulations of the universality' of gendered oppression of struggles. In the 1990s, the challenges posed by black and Third World feminists can point the way towards a more precise, transformative feminist politics. Thus, the juncture of feminist and anti-racist/Third World/post-colonial studies is of great significance, materially as well as methodologically. Feminist analyses which attempt to cross national, racial and ethnic boundaries produce and reproduce difference in particular ways. This codification of difference occurs through the naturalization of analytic categories which are supposed to have cross-cultural validity. While Robin Morgan uses the notion of sisterhood to construct a cross-cultural unity of women and speaks of planetary feminism as the politics of the 21st century', Bernice Johnson Reagon uses coalition as the basis to talk about the cross-cultural commonality of struggles, identifying survival, rather than shared oppression, as the ground for coalition.