Feminism That Went Too Far

Essay by babyblue_eyed_angelUniversity, Bachelor'sA-, July 2006

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Adrienne Rich was an accomplished poet that spoke up for the feminist's right movement in her many books of poetry and collections of prose. She published an essay in 1971 entitled When We Dead Awaken: Writing as Re-Vision that addresses the issues of female literary and academic oppression. Rich argues that "Re-Vision the act of looking back, of seeing with fresh eyes, of entering an old text from a new critical direction is for women more than a chapter in cultural history: it is an act of survival. Until we can understand the assumptions in which we are drenched we cannot know ourselves. And this drive to self-knowledge, for women, is more than a search for identity: it is part of our refusal of the self-destructiveness of male-dominated society" (540). The problems that I've found with Rich's criticisms is that they are a product of her radical liberal, sexist views.

She uses men as an scapegoat. I don't believe her views have any sustenance behind them. Feminism does a lot of good things but not in the extreme case of Adrienne Rich. The way she talks about men is patronizing and unreasonable. Her essay seems extremely biased in the persona of the male influence on society. I find her criticisms to be nothing more than the views of a typical feminist, lesbian, right-winged liberal.

Rich goes on to talk about the man's role in poetry stating that "Man appears as, if not a dream, a fascination and a terror; and that the source of the fascination and the terror is, simply, Man's power to dominate, tyrannize, choose, or reject the woman. The charisma of Man seems to come purely from his power over her and his control of the world by force, not from anything fertile or life-giving in...