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Science and Society. Volume 69, Number 1 (2005), p. 113-132.


Catherine MacKinnon; feminist legal theory; Karl Marx; Marxism


Catherine MacKinnon, perhaps the dominant voice of North American feminist legal theory over the last two decades, developed her feminist theory of law through an extended metaphor with Marxism. Marxist thought thus became thoroughly intertwined with MacKinnon’s particular brand of radical feminism in the minds of many feminist legal scholars and activists. As MacKinnon’s work has fallen out of favor in recent years, largely as a result of criticisms leveled against it from postmodern and critical race feminist perspectives, so too has the work of Marx. Setting MacKinnon’s Towards a Feminist Theory of the State side by side with Volume I of Capital, and offering a critique of the use she made of Marx’s work, reveals the continued relevance of Marxism to feminist legal scholarship and activism.


© Guilford Press. Reprinted with permission of The Guilford Press.

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