Is feminist theory a tool for social change?
I am looking at putting definitions of feminist theory into context and define some of the debates listed in the feminist theory reader(local and global perspectives) Edited by Carole R McCann and Seung-Kyung Kim
I am not sure how Feminist theory could not be seen as a tool for social change. The notion of "praxis," the idea of theory and practice merging in one element, is evident in feminist theory. The construction of the theory as one that explores patriarchy that might not be previously known and perceived, only to uncover it and bring light to it demonstrates how feminism is a tool for social change. Feminism seeks to draw how the conditions of what is can and should be altered into what should be. Be definition, this is a statement of social change. It is not one to be restricted into an academic exercise. In all of its domains, even the most academic exercise of feminist theory contains the root of change at its basic core. This helps to drive home the idea that feminist theory is a philosophy that is driven towards the end of social change. In doing so, feminist theory demonstrates how individuals committed to bringing out patriarchal structures do so with one eye on the notion of social change for if such an oppressive notion is present, it can be demonstrated in the realm of society and calling out to be changed.
Feminism is a broad theoretical and philosophical position which seeks to examine, understand, deconstruct, and/or re-imagine notions if gender and womanhood. Historically, feminism has also been concerned with challenging patriarchal and chauvinistic social practices, and with redressing the oppression of women.
Feminist theory has contributed to much social change, including: the abolition of slavery, the universal right to vote, and the economic development of developing nations. Feminist theory has also opened up new conversations about freedom, liberty and human rights. For example, it is deeply embedded in debates about gay marriage, sexual freedom, birth control and abortion.