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The Dynamics of Second-Wave Feminist Activism in Memphis, 1971-1982: Rethinking the Liberal/Radical Divide

Stephanie Gilmore
NWSA Journal
Vol. 15, No. 1 (Spring, 2003), pp. 94-117
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4316946
Page Count: 24
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The Dynamics of Second-Wave Feminist Activism in Memphis, 1971-1982: Rethinking the Liberal/Radical Divide
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Abstract

This article presents a history of the Memphis chapter of the National Organization for Women (NOW) that challenges traditional analyses of second-wave feminist activism as either liberal or radical. Through examples of feminist activism on behalf of the Equal Rights Amendment, rape and wife-abuse awareness and prevention, and pornography, the author illustrates how one chapter of NOW, which is typically identified as a liberal organization, was simultaneously liberal and radical. In addition, the author calls for more attention to location in order to understand second-wave feminists' tactics, styles, and structures as well as to make more prominent the nuances and complexities of a movement often obscured by the liberal/radical divide.

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