Against the Neoconservatives: Freud versus Feminism

Against the Neoconservatives: Freud versus Feminism

The attitude of the women’s movement toward Freud has changed in recent years. The movement’s beginnings were marked by an attack upon what were seen as the rationalizations of Freudian theory for the subordination of women. Naomi Weisstein’s “Kinder, Kuche, Kirche as Scientific Law,” widely read among feminists of the New Left, represented the prevailing attitude toward psychological theory:

Psychology has nothing to say about what women are really like, what they need and what they want, essentially because psychology does not know. I want to stress that this failure is not limited to women; rather, the psychology which has addressed itself to how people act and who they are has failed to understand, in the first place, why people act the way they do, and certainly failed to understand what might make them act differently.’

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Duggan | University of California Press Gardels