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Theorising Patriarchy

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published

Journal publication date1989
JournalSociology
Journal number2
Volume23
Number of pages22
Pages213-234
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

The concept `patriarchy', while being vital for feminist analysis, has been criticised for not being able to deal with historical and cross-cultural variation in the forms of women's subordination. This paper presents a new way of theorising patriarchy to meet these objections; one which is flexible enough to take account of its various forms, but rigorous enough to be an effective tool for analysis. It leaves behind base-superstructure models of patriarchy in which there is only one base, which have led to many of the rigidities which have been identified, arguing instead for a model of patriarchy as six partially-interdependent structures. The paper concludes with a discussion of the different forms of patriarchy in recent British history.