chapter  1
21 Pages

Introduction

This introduction presents an overview of key concepts covered in this book. The book offers a theoretical account of why and how, in contemporary western societies characterized by formal equality and women's relative economic independence from men, women continue to be subordinated to men through sexuality and love. It provides a critique of the state of affairs of contemporary feminist theory. The characteristic radical feminist position was that sexuality is the pivot of men's patriarchal power. The book provides an overview of how feminist theorists have dealt with sexuality and its relation to gendered power. It then offers an overview of empirical research that bears witness to the tenacity of women's subordination to men as sexual beings in contemporary western societies. The book explains the ontology of sexuality, love, power, sex, gender and their interrelation. It then outlines some important critical realist categories and arguments in an attempt to challenge the 'academic orthodoxy' of poststructuralist feminist theory.