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Geographies of subjectivity: Locating feminist political subjects in Milan

Geographies of subjectivity: Locating feminist political subjects in Milan

Vacchelli, Elena (2011) Geographies of subjectivity: Locating feminist political subjects in Milan. Gender, Place & Culture, 18 (6). pp. 768-785. ISSN 0966-369X (doi:

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This article explores activist women's changing subjectivities and how they sought to challenge the political and spatial order of gender relations in Milan from the late 1960s onwards. Feminist subjectivities have been shaped through the collective practice of consciousness-raising. The relational context of the narratives they established became important as a means of defining their political subjectivity and helped them to make sense of their identity in transformation. Drawing on Adriana Cavarero's Arendtian definition of the political, this article argues that feminist political subjectivity is shaped relationally through mutual self-exposure in the public sphere. In this way, exposure to others becomes a constitutive act contributing to an ongoing version of subjectivity. It is also, at the same time, the material condition for social and political life to take place. Contemporary versions of spatial practices such as separatism and consciousness-raising, it is argued, have the potential to inscribe women's role in Milan in an innovative way, especially when compared with the traditional modes of political representation.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Italian feminism, Political subjectivity, Spatial practices, Consciousness-raising, Separatism, Belonging
Faculty / Department / Research Group: Faculty of Liberal Arts & Sciences
Faculty of Liberal Arts & Sciences > Department of Literature, Language & Theatre
Last Modified: 13 Dec 2020 00:52
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: GREAT a
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
Selected for GREAT 2019: None
Selected for REF2021: None

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