Feminism and Marxism

Topics: Marxism, Feminism, Social class Pages: 4 (1329 words) Published: November 17, 2010
Comparing Feminism and Marxism, both claims that society is split into the powerful and the powerless. Although they are two different theories and criticism, founded upon different claims and needs, but they have many characteristics in common. One tries to condemn patriarchy, and care about women, especially those suffered of patriotic inequalities. The other theory rejects Capitalism. Believing that landlords and bourgeoisie have oppressed proletariat through the history, Marxism promises economic equality for all, especially proletariat or middle / lower class. They both fight against the ruling system of the time, and believe that if people become aware of their situation, it leads to a revolution (or as some feminists argue, feminists ask for an evolution) and this change in society helps for a better future. Feminist and Marxist criticism are results of firm ideological and political commitments and both insist that literature both reflects and influences human behavior in the world. Marxism divides people, according to Tyson, into groups of bourgeoisie and proletariat. Bourgeoisie are those who own a natural resource, like farm or have an economic resource, that brings them power. Proletariats are workers who don’t own any kind of natural resources. They are the majority of population and work hard, but the benefit goes to bourgeoisie, and they live in a poor condition. Ryan gives some historical examples of Middle Ages and capitalist eras and emphasizes that even in Shakespeare’s plays, aristocrats have leading roles, fight, make stories and win or die nobly. Poor people could only find some bad sexual puns related to their lives.

In Feminism, it is almost the same, based on Simone De Beauvoir’s well-known notion of ‘otherness’; the world is based on patriarchal basics, and is ruled by patriarchal rules in which men are absolute, and women are considered as objects, inessential, lack, not important and simply ‘the others’. It is what Julia Kristeva...
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