Leadership for Feminist Movement Building: An Intergenerational Conversation on Theory, Practice and Philanthropy Stanford University



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Articles about Intergenerational Feminism (Synopses)

Deborah Abowitz, The Campus "F" Word: Feminist Self-Identification (and not) among Undergraduates, 34 International Journal of Sociology of the Family 43 (Spring 2008).


Available at:

http://www.serialspublications.com/images/upload/3-Deborah%20A%20Abowitz.pdf


Results from a survey demonstrate the persistence of the feminist paradox among Gen Y undergraduates. "Feminist” has become the campus “f” word. Despite low levels of self-identification among “third wave” (post- Baby Boom) feminists, we can successfully predict those who do and do not consider themselves feminist by examining key variables, including their concern for women’s rights, gender, traditional gender ideology, levels of maternal education and maternal labor force participation.

Hokulni Aikau, Karla A. Erickson, and Jennifer L. Pierce, Feminist Waves, Feminist Generations: Life Stories from the Academy (Univ. Of Minnesota Press 2007).




Based on life stories from contemporary feminist scholars, this volume emphasizes how feminism develops unevenly over time and across institutions and, ultimately, offers a new paradigm for theorizing the intersections between generations and feminist waves of thought.

Rita Alfonso and Jo Trigilio, Surfing the Third Wave: A Dialogue Between Two Third Wave Feminists, 12 Hypatia 7 (Summer 1997).

Available at:

http://www.jstor.org/stable/3810219


E-mail discussion on third wave feminism and the subjects of postmodernism, the relationship between theory and practice, the generation gap, and the power relations associated with feminist philosophy as an established part of  the academy.

Pamela Aronson, Feminists or Postfeminists: Young Women's Attitudes toward Feminism and Gender Relations, 17 Gender and Society 903 (Dec. 2003).

Available at:

http://www.jstor.org/stable/3594676


Survey reveals support for feminist goals, coupled with ambiguity about the concept of feminism among young women.

Cathryn Bailey, Making Waves and Drawing Lines: The Politics of Defining the Vicissitudes of Feminism, 12 Hyptia 17 (Summer 1997).

Available at:

http://www.jstor.org/stable/3810220


If there actually is a third wave of feminism, it is too close to the second wave for its definition to be clear and uncontroversial, a fact which emphasizes the political nature of declaring the existence of this third wave.

Baumgardner and Richards, Manifesta: Young Women, Feminism, and the Future (Farrar, Straus and Giroux 2000).


Young women live by feminism's goals, yet feminism itself is undeniably at a crossroads; "girl power" feminists appear to be obsessed with personal empowerment at the expense of politics while political institutions such as Ms. and NOW are so battle weary they've lost their ability to speak to a new generation. Jennifer Baumgardner and Amy Richards show the snags in each feminist hub--from the dissolution of riot grrrls into the likes of the Spice Girls, to older women's hawking of young girls' imperiled self-esteem, to the hyped hatred of feminist thorns like Katie Roiphe and Naomi Wolf--and prove that these snags have not, in fact, torn feminism asunder. They apply Third Wave confidence to Second Wave consciousness, all the while maintaining that the answer to feminism's problems is still feminism.

Catherine I. Bolzendahl and Daniel J. Myers, Feminist Attitudes and Support for Gender Equality: Opinion Change in Women and Men, 1974 – 1998, 83 Social Forces 759 (Dec. 2004).

Available at:

http://www.jstor.org/stable/3598347


Examines changing attitudes related to feminism and gender inequality and finds determinants of feminist opinions.

Bondoc and Meg Daly, Letters of Intent: Women Cross the Generations to Talk about Family, Work, Sex, Love and the Future of Feminism (Free Press 1999).





Frustrated by the standoff between both camps of the feminist generation gap, twenty-somethings Anna Bondoc and Meg Daly decided that it was time to bring women of all ages together. What could young women learn from their foremothers, who had fought for sexual freedom, educational opportunity, and equality in the workplace? What did older women need to hear from the young women who now struggle with the day-to-day difficulties of life after the sexual revolution and the women's liberation movement? In order to find out, Bondoc and Daly invited twenty of their "third-wave" peers to identify an admired older woman and, in the form of a letter, pose the question she has always wanted to ask. The older "second-wave" women then responded in kind.

Ann Braithwaite, The Personal, the Political, Third Wave and Postfeminisms, 3 Feminist Theory 335 (2002).

Available at:

http://fty.sagepub.com/content/3/3/335.full.pdf


Argues that the intersections and overlaps between postfeminism and the third wave point to the centrality of multiplicity, plurality, contradiction and conflict in all current feminist thinking.

LuAnn Cooley, Transformational Learning and Third-Wave Feminism, 5 Journal of Transformative Education 304 (2007).

Available at:

http://jtd.sagepub.com/content/5/4/304.full.pdf


Considers women’s participation in enclaves as sites for transformational learning such that a potential outcome is a third-wave feminist consciousness.

Madelyn Deltoff, Mean Spirits: The Politics of Contempt between Feminist Generations, 12 Hypatia : Third Wave Feminisms 76 (Summer, 1997.

Available at:

http://www.jstor.org/stable/3810223


Current models for individuation in academe exacerbate generational tensions between second and third wave feminists. Feminist pedagogues must be wary of getting caught

in the "vicious circle of contempt." Instead, they must be willing to mourn the wounds we have received at the hands of a contemptuous culture and to acknowledge same-gender attachments that are disavowed in dialectical models of subject production. Stems from author's stems own observations of conflict at the 1995 National Women's Studies Association conference.


Dicker and Piepmeier, Catching a Wave: Reclaiming Feminism for the 21st Century (Northeastern 2003).


Young women today have benefited from the strides made by grassroots social activists in the 1960s and 1970s, yet they are hesitant to identify themselves as feminists and seem apathetic about carrying the torch of older generations to redress persistent sexism and gender-based barriers. Contesting the notion that we are in a post-feminist age, this collection of original essays identifies a third wave of feminism. The contributors argue that the next generation needs to develop a politicized, collective feminism that both builds on the strategies of second wave feminists and is grounded in the material realities and culture of the twenty-first century. 

Harde and Harde, “Voices and Visions: A Mother and Daughter Discuss Coming to Feminism and Being Feminist.”

In Catching a Wave, pp. 116-137.




Astrid Henry, “Feminism's Family Problem: Feminist Generations and the Mother Daughter Trope.”

In Catching a Wave, pp. 209-231.




Susan Faludi, American Electra: Feminism's Ritual Matricide, Harper's Magazine, October 2010.

Available at:

http://harpers.org/archive/2010/10/0083140




Suzanne Ferriss and Mallory Young, Chicks, Girls and Choice: Redefining Feminism, 6 Junctures 87 (June 2006)

Available at:

http://www.junctures.org.nz/junctures/index.php/junctures/article/view/121/125


"The words chick, girl, and choice represent and register generational redefinitions of womanhood and women’s rights, femininity and feminism. More than simple linguistic changes, they trace shifts in ideas and ideology." Explanation of third wave ideals.

Barbara Findlen, Listen up: Voices from the Next Feminist Generation (Seal Press 1995).





This collection of writings, featuring the voices of today's young feminists, the "Third Wave", explores and reveals their lives. Their impassioned essays take on such topics as racism, AIDS, sex, identity, revolution, and abortion.

Estelle Freedman, No Turning Back: the History of Feminism and the Future of Women (Ballantine Books 2003).


Freedman argues feminism has reached a critical momentum from which there is no turning back. Freedman examines the historical forces that have fueled the feminist movement over the past two hundred years–and explores how women today are looking to feminism for new approaches to issues of work, family, sexuality, and creativity.

Estelle Freedman, The Essential Feminist Reader (Modern Library 2007).


This collection features primary source material from around the globe, including short works of fiction and drama, political manifestos, and the work of less well-known writers. 

Ednie K. Garrison, U.S. Feminism-Grrrl Style! Youth (Sub)Cultures and the Technologics of the Third Wave, 26 Feminist Studies 141 (Spring 2000).

Available at:

http://www.jstor.org/stable/3178596


“As part of a larger project explaining why the name "Third Wave feminism" is so attractive to myself and others, this article considers specifically the role of democratized technologies, the media, subcultural movements and networks, and differential oppositional consciousness in the

formation of feminist consciousness among young women in the historical/cultural milieu of the United States in the 1990s." Discusses identity, technology, and networking among the third wave.”


Stacy Gillis and Rebecca Munford, Genealogies and Generations: the Politics and Praxis of Third Wave Feminism, 13 Women's History Review 165 (2004).

Available at:



http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/09612020400200388

This article interrogates the ways in which post-feminism and third wave feminism are used interchangeably, both within the academy and in the media. As it identifies the ways in which third wave feminism seeks to define itself as a non-academic discourse, it points up the tensions implicit in the contemporary feminist project. Gillis and Munford argue that the wave paradigm paralyses feminism, pitting generations against one another.

Stacy Gillis, Gillian Howie and Rebecca Munford, Third Wave Feminism: A Critical Exploration (Palgrave Macmillan 2007).


This collection explores the current period in feminism, known by many as the "third wave". Four sections--genealogies, sex and gender, popular culture, and challenges--interrogate the wave metaphor and, through questioning the generational account of feminism, move feminist theory beyond the present impasse between modernism and postmodernism and indicate possible future trajectories for the feminist movement.

Stephanie Gilmore, Feminist Coalitions: Historical Perspectives on Second-Wave Feminism in the United States (University of Illinois Press 2008).


Much of the scholarship on second-wave feminism has focused on divisions within the women's movement and its narrow conception of race and class, but the contributors to this volume remind readers that feminists in the 1960s and 1970s also formed many strong partnerships, often allying themselves with a diverse range of social justice efforts on a local grassroots level. These essays focus on coalitions and alliances in which feminists and other activists joined forces to address crucial social justice issues.

Anita Harris, All about the Girl: Culture, Power, and Identity (Routledge 2004).


This collection offers a complicated portrait of girls in the 21st Century. These are the riot grrls and the Spice Girls, the good girls and the bad girls who are creating their own "girl" culture and giving a whole new meaning to "grrl" power. Featuring essays from Michelle Fine, Angela McRobbie, Valerie Walkerdine, Nancy Lesko, Niobe Way and Deborah Tolman, this work brings to life the ever-changing identities of today's young women.

Astrid Henry, Not My Mother’s Sister: Generational Conflict and Third-Wave Feminism (Indiana University Press 2004).




"An intervention in the oft-cited conflict between second- and third-wave feminists in the United States. Not merely another agenda or manifesto, Astrid Henry's book provides a striking historical and rhetorical analysis of feminist generational talk, past and present. Henry argues that ‘the mother-daughter relationship is the central trope in depicting the relationship between the so-called second and third waves of U.S. feminism’ and shows that ‘this metaphor has far-reaching implications for contemporary feminism.’ Henry's book provides incisive analysis of the so-called feminist waves. Henry's goal is to create opportunities for ‘a more expansive vision of generational dialogue and exchange.’”

Astrid Henry, Enviously Grateful, Gratefully Envious: The Dynamics of Generational Relationships in U.S. Feminism, 34 Women's Studies Quarterly 140 (Fall - Winter 2006).

Available at:

http://www.jstor.org/stable/40003530


"In this essay, I wish to think through the relationship between apparently contradictory emotions to understand the complexity of contemporary relationships between generations of feminists."

Daisy Hernández and Bushra Rehman, Colonize This! : Young Women of Color on Today's Feminism (Seal Press 2002).


Collection of first-person accounts to add a fresh dimension to the ongoing dialogue between race and gender, and to give voice to the women who are creating and shaping the feminism of the future.

Leslie Heywood and Jennifer Drake, Third Wave Agenda: Being Feminist, Doing Feminism (Univ. of Minnesota Press 1997).


Feminists born between the years 1964 and 1973 discuss the things that matter now, both in looking back at the accomplishments and failures of the past--and in planning for the challenges of the future.

Leslie Heywood, The Women's Movement Today: an Encyclopedia of Third-Wave Feminism (Greenwood Press 2006).


Introduces the third wave's key issues, members, visions, writings, and more through more than 200 encyclopedia entries that are multidisciplinary and multicultural, inclusive of diverse gender orientations and sexualities, with a focus primarily on the movement in the United States.

Lisa Hogeland, Against Generational Thinking, or, Some Things That “Third Wave” Feminism Isn't, 24 Women's Studies in Communication 107 (Spring 2001).

Available at:

http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/07491409.2001.10162429


"The rhetoric of generational differences in feminism works to mask real political differences- fundamental differences in our visions of feminism's tasks and accomplishments. Feminists are differently situated in relation to what feminist movement has (and has not) accomplished, and generation is perhaps the least powerful explanatory factor for our different situations." Focuses instead on the changing relationship between consciousness and social change.

Paula Kamen, Feminist Fatale: Voices from the ‘Twentysomething’ Generation Explore the Future of the “Women's Movement” (Plume 1991).




Journalist/feminist Paula Kamen traveled all over the country to interview people about that elusive word "feminism" and what it meant to people her age (the "twentysomething" generation).

Amber Kinser, Negotiating Spaces For/Through Third-Wave Feminism, 16 NWSA Journal 124 (Fall 2004).

Available at:

http://www.jstor.org/stable/4317084?seq=1


This essay examines the challenge confronting young feminists of finding their place and creating their space in the political landscape. It argues that the conceptual leverage of a “third wave” helps young women articulate a feminism that responds to the political, economic, technological, and cultural circumstances that are unique to the current era. Asks what are the unique contributions that third-wave rhetoric can make?

Marta Lamas, Feminism: Transmissions and Retransmissions (Palgrave Macmillan 2011).


With the goal of opening up dialogue and debate, Feminism presents a history of Mexican feminism in the last thirty five years. Drawing from her many years of activism and anthropological scholarship, Lamas covers topics such as the political development of the feminist movement, affirmative action in the workplace, conceptual advances in regard to gender, and the nuances of disagreements among feminists.

Looser and Kaplan, Generations: Academic Feminists in Dialogue (Univ. of Minnesota Press 1997).


A compilation of articles about generational difficulties and talking between generations within the movement.

Colleen Mack-Canty, Third-Wave Feminism and the Need to Reweave the Nature/Culture Duality, 16 NWSA Journal 154 (Fall 2004).

Available at:

http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.2307/4317085


"In this work, I address the uneven

movement from second-wave to third-wave feminism. I discuss three feminisms: youth feminism, postcolonial feminism, and ecofeminism, and the importance of each, in their current expression, to the present form of third-wave feminism. I suggest that while all these feminisms begin to reweave the nature/culture duality by theorizing from the notion of embodiment, ecofeminism is able to make a significant additional contribution in this regard."


Martin and Sullivan, Click: When We Knew We Were Feminists (Seal Press 2010).


Martin and Sullivan bring us a range of women—including Jessica Valenti, Amy Richards, Shelby Knox, Winter Miller, and Jennifer Baumgardner—who share stories about the moment they knew they were feminists.

Janice McCabe, What's in a Label? The Relationship between Feminist Self-Identification and ‘Feminist’ Attitudes among U.S. Women and Men, 19 Gender and Society 480 (Aug. 2005).

Available at:

http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.2307/30044613


This article examines the relationships between feminist self-identification, sociodemographics, political orientation, and a range of gender-related attitudes using data from the 1996 General Society Survey. These findings point to more multifaceted and heterogeneous meanings of feminist identity among the U.S. public than most research acknowledge.

Catherine Orr, Charting the Currents of the Third Wave, 12 Hypatia: Third Wave Feminisms 29 (Summer 1997).

Available at:

http://www.jstor.org/stable/3810221


Many third wave discourses constitute themselves as a break with both second wave and academic feminisms; a break problematic for both generations of feminists. The emergence of third wave feminism offers academic feminists an opportunity to rethink the context of knowledge production and the mediums through which we disseminate our work.

Pia Peltola, Melissa A. Milkie, Stanley Presser, The “Feminist” Mystique: Feminist Identity in Three Generations of Women, 18 Gender and Society 122 (Feb. 2004).

Available at:

http://www.jstor.org/stable/4149377


Using two national surveys, the authors show that the most recent generation is no less likely than prior cohorts to identify as feminist. However, Baby Bust women are less apt to identify as feminist than are older women. Analysis suggests this reluctance is not due to an aversion to feminism but reflects the “off” timing of the feminist movement in the lives of Baby Bust women. The relationships of political ideology and gender attitudes to feminist identity are stronger among Baby Boom women, who came of age during the feminist movement’s second wave, than among

older and younger women.


Jennifer Purvis, Grrrls and Women Together in the Third Wave: Embracing the Challenges of Intergenerational Feminism(s), 16 NWSA Journal 93 (Fall 2004).

Available at:

http://www.jstor.org/stable/4317083


This essay asks: If current third-wave controversy continues to reify oppositions between the second and third waves of feminism, largely based on caricatures, or "straw feminisms, " how can the grrrls and women who occupy the space of a "third-wave political moment," or a "third-wave feminist consciousness,." accomplish the formidable tasks of feminisms? By addressing the primacy and pitfalls of dominant generational rhetoric and applying an alternative Kristevan framework, this piece examines the potentiality entailed in such a moment and challenges the limits of existing debates.

Jo Reger, Different Wavelengths: Studies of the Contemporary Women's Movement (Routledge 2005).


The contributors define and examine the complexity of the Third Wave by answering questions like: how appropriate is a "third wave" label for contemporary feminism; are the agendas of contemporary feminism and the "second wave" really all that different; does the wave metaphor accurately describe the difference between contemporary feminists and their predecessors; how do women of color fit into this notion of contemporary feminism; and what are the future directions of the feminist movement?

Susanne Beechey, When Feminism is Your Job: Age and Power in Women’s Policy Organizations.”

In Different Wavelengths, pp. 117-136.




Barbara Duncan, “Searching for a Home Place: Online in the Third Wave.”

In Different Wavelengths, pp. 161-178.




Stephanie Gilmore, “Bridging the Waves: Sex and Sexuality in a Second Wave Organization.”

In Different Wavelengths, pp. 97-116.





Astrid Henry, “Solidarity Sisterhood: Individualism Meets Collectivity in Feminism’s Third Wave.”

In Different Wavelengths, pp. 81-96.




Ednie Kaeh Garrison, “Are We on the Same Wavelength Yet?”

In Different Wavelengths, pp. 237-256.




Nancy Naples, "Confronting the Future, Learning from the Past: Feminist Praxis in the Twenty-First Century."

In Different Wavelengths, pp. 215-236.




Leila Rupp, Is Feminism the Province of Old (or Middle-Aged) Women?, 12 Journal of Women's History 164 (Winter 2001).



Available at:


"Age is an important category of analysis in thinking about feminism and, no doubt, much else. In addition, a historical understanding of age and feminism might help us to understand better the young women we older feminists hope will carry on when we are gone. If nothing else, we need to learn from those older women who longed for young hands to help out but insisted that the younger generation change nothing about the way the struggle was waged."

Jason Schnittker, Jeremy Freese, Brian Powell, Who Are Feminists and What Do They Believe? The Role of Generations, 68 American Sociological Review 607 (Aug. 2003).

Available at:

http://www.jstor.org/stable/1519741


The antecedents of feminist self-identification and their link to gender-related social attitudes are explored. Although most socio-demographic variables show either no relationship or a weak relationship with feminist self-identification, there are strong differences across cohorts. Males and females who were young adults during the "second wave" of feminism (birth years 1936 to 1955) are more likely to identify as feminists than are those younger or older. In addition, the link between feminist self-identification and some social attitudes is cohort specific: Seemingly profeminist positions distinguish self-identified feminists from nonfeminists only among members of the "second-wave" generation. These results reinforce the importance of political generation and suggest increasing heterogeneity in public conceptions of feminism.

Helene Shugart, Isn’t It Ironic: The Intersection of Third-Wave Feminism and Generation X, 24 Women's Studies in Communication 131 (Fall 2001).

Available at:

http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/07491409.2001.10162432


Analyzes how gender is constructed and communicated by women of Generation X in order to assess the relationship between Gen X and third wave feminism. Argues the overlap between "third wavers" and Gen X is great and that third wave feminism is more appropriately understood as a Gen X subculture than as an evolutionary phase of feminism.

Deborah Siegel, Sisterhood, Interrupted: From Radical Women to Grrls Gone Wild (Palgrave Macmillan 2007).


Sisterhood, Interrupted exposes the key issues still at stake, outlining how a twenty-first century feminist can reconcile the personal with the political and combat long-standing inequalities that continue today.

Roberta S. Sigel and John V. Reynolds, Generational Differences and the Women's Movement, 94 Political Science Quarterly 635 (Winter 1979-1980).

Available at:

http://www.jstor.org/stable/2149630


This article examines the dispositions toward the contemporary women's movement and its goals of two generations of similarly educated women. Specifically it is a comparison of mothers and daughters who have attended (or are attending) the same college. Two competing hypotheses will be offered to explain the basis of support. One hypothesis identifies the social position of women as the key variable. The other hypothesis is the generational hypothesis.

Claire Snyder, What Is ThirdWave Feminism? A New Directions Essay, 34 Signs 175 (Autumn 2008).

Available at:

http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.1086/588436


"This essay explores a wide array of popular and academic literature on third-wave feminism in an attempt to make sense of a movement that on its face may seem like a confusing hodgepodge of personal anecdotes and individualistic claims, in which the whole is less than the sum of its parts. While third-wave feminists do not have an entirely different set of issues or solutions to long-standing dilemmas, the movement does constitute, I would argue, more than simply a rebellion against second-wave mothers. What really differentiates the third wave from the second is the tactical approach it offers to some of the impasses that developed within feminist theory in the 1980s"

Christina Sommers, Who Stole Feminism? How Women have Betrayed Women (Simon & Schuster 1995).


Sommers has exposed a disturbing development: how a group of zealots, claiming to speak for all women, are promoting a dangerous new agenda that threatens our most cherished ideals and sets women against men in all spheres of life. Despite its current dominance, Sommers maintains, such a breed of feminism is at odds with the real aspirations and values of most American women and undermines the cause of true equality.

Kimberly Springer, Third Wave Black Feminism?, 27 Signs 1059 (Summer 2002).

Available at:



http://www.jstor.org/stable/3175944

This article evokes three central questions about contemporary young Black women’s views on gender and race: Is there a third wave Black feminist politic? What issues are contemporary young Black feminists prioritizing? How do these young women contextualize their experiences and their politics?

Jessica Valenti, Full frontal Feminism : A Young Woman's Guide to Why Feminism Matters (Seal Press 2007).


 Full Frontal Feminism embodies the forward-looking messages that Jessica Valenti propagates on her popular website, Feministing.com. Covering a range of topics, including pop culture, health, reproductive rights, violence, education, relationships, and more, Valenti provides young women a primer on why feminism matters. 

Rebecca Walker, To be Real: Telling the Truth and Changing the Face of Feminism (Anchor Books 1995).


An anthology of essays by up-and-coming feminist and gay writers reevaluates the objectives and philosophy of the feminist movement, calling for more emphasis on liberating women than guarding their sexual behavior.

Justyna Wlodarczyk, Ungrateful Daughters: Third Wave Feminist Writings (Cambridge Scholars Pub. 2010).


Using tools of literary criticism to analyze the literary output of third wave feminism in the United States, Ungrateful Daughters looks at the main anthologies of third wave writings, paying attention to their structure, production process and narrative forms used in the individual pieces. It also attempts to define third wave fiction and analyze the memoirs and novels coming from writers who could be classified as third wave (specifically, Rebecca Walker, Danzy Senna and Michelle Tea), tracing how these books exhibit 'third wave sensibility' and reflect generational experiences of third wave writers. 

Naomi Zack, Inclusive Feminism: A Third Wave Theory of Women's Commonality (Rowman & Littlefield Publishers 2005).


Zack shows ongoing segregations make it impossible for women to unite politically and they have not ended exclusion and discrimination among women, especially in the academy. Zack provides a universal, relational definition of women, critically engages both Anglo and French feminists and shows how women can become a united historical force
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