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Daring To Be Bad: Radical Feminism in America 1967-1975
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Daring To Be Bad: Radical Feminism in America 1967-1975 (Paperback)

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From the late 1960s to the early 1970s, radical feminism was the most dynamic force within the women's movement. Yet, in the more than twenty years since the emergence of contemporary feminism, there has been no book-length study of this branch of the movement. "Daring to be bad" fills this void. In it, Alice Echols traces the trajectory of the radical feminist movement from its beleaguered beginnings in 1967, through its ascendance as the dominant tendency within the movement, to its decline and eventual supplantation by cultural feminism and liberal feminism in the mid-seventies. Combining intellectual and social history with collective biography, Echols provides both a historical and theoretical analysis of radical feminism. Her text carefully situates radical feminism within 1960s radicalism, illuminating the ways in which it was intellectually indebted to the black freedom movement and the new left.

Echols also relates radical feminism to past feminist struggles, and suggests that there are recurrent tensions within American feminism: feminism's relationship to other social change movements; women's differences from one another; sexuality -- whether it should be conceptualized primarily as a site of pleasure or of danger; and, finally, the meaning of feminism itself -- whether it entails the transcendence of gender or the celebration of female difference. "Alice Echols is a visiting Assistant Professor of History at the University of Arizona at Tucson. Ellen Willis is s Staff Writer at the "Village Voice" and the author of "Beginning to see the light", a collection of essays on culture and politics.

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