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Prof. Francesca Parmeggiani (Fordham University) “Gender, Culture, and Ideology: Armanda Guiducci’s Eclectic Feminism”
September 28, 2017 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm
Gender, Culture, and Ideology: Armanda Guiducci’s Eclectic Feminism
The writings of Armanda Guiducci (Naples 1923 – Milan 1992), a Marxist cultural critic who embraced feminism midway into her literary career, offer a particularly rich case study for examining the development of Italian feminism since the post-World War II period, for enriching the archive of Italian women’s literary and political voices in the 1960s-1980s, and for assessing the legacy of Italian second-wave feminist intellectual militancy. In this paper, I revisit the complex relationship that Italian women entertained with party politics and leftist ideology in the 1950s through the 1980s by focusing on Guiducci’s early analyses of Marxist cultural theory and her later investigations into women’s cultural and socio-economic conditions in capitalist and communist societies and Western and non-Western civilizations. In Guiducci’s later production, inspired by Simone de Beauvoir, Betty Friedan and Christine Delphy among others and blending class and gender consciousness, Marxism and feminism play a game of mutual resistance and adaptation. This tension informs her critical style and experimentation with various literary genres, and gives consistent political significance to her versatile intellectual career and cultural activism.