Just now I was briefly looking back over that post at NP’s that I mentioned before I noticed a comment from Carl. He asks “How much of this analysis has analogies in feminism?” and says “since patriarchy is to feminism as capitalism is to marxism, Catherine MacKinnon is to patriarchy as Lukacs is to capitalism. The similarity being that for both, the oppressive system is speculatively totalized and then reinserted as such into the practical analysis.Is patriarchy a historical enough notion to get dialectical, even contingent? If patriarchy, like class struggle, has always already existed in some form or another as the essence of social relations, how does analysis of it not become a procrustean bed?”

I find this really provocative and want to think more about it. (Well grubbed, Dead Voles!) For now, this post is just a placeholder (one of many) to remind myself to come back to this. I think this ties in to the post I’ve not yet written about Heidi Hartmann and the notes I never posted about Dale Tomich. The issues include theory construction and the status of theory in empirical work (on that, note to self, post notes on Frederick Taylor on what he calls indigenous vs analytical categories). There’s also I think a potential political stake here but I’m not 100% sure on that. (I’d also like to hear more on Carl’s question about whether “the apparent victories of liberal feminism can be seen as intensifying the essential dominance of patriarchy.”)