Reading Between the Lines: A Lesbian Feminist Critique of Feminist Accounts of Sexuality

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Abstract
Reading between the Lines critically examines recent feminist writings on sexuality from a radical feminist and lesbian feminist standpoint. It takes a stand against the libertarian emphasis current in many 'second wave' feminist writings on sexuality, and argues that such an emphasis is antithetical to feminist values. Early feminism saw the social construction of sexuality as one of the chief mechanisms for the male domination of females. Recently, however, this perspective has not been strongly represented in most self-identified feminist texts on sexuality.Reading between the Lines attempts to redress this state of affairs. It criticises the liberal tolerance of the libertarian ethic of sexual pluralism in these texts, their omission or marginalisation of lesbianism, their insistence on the sexual similarity of the sexes, their construction of the 'straw woman' of 'cultural' feminism, and the anti-feminist implications of the 'anti-anti-pornography' stance. At the same time, Reading between the Lines argues the case for political lesbianism.
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Author(s)
Thompson, Denise
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Publication Year
1991
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Book
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