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Interrogating Postfeminism: Gender and the Politics of Popular Culture (Console-ing Passions) [Paperback]

Yvonne Tasker , Diane Negra
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
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Book Description

11 Dec 2007 Console-ing Passions
This timely collection brings feminist critique to bear on contemporary "postfeminist" mass media culture, analyzing phenomena ranging from female action films to the "girling" of aging women in productions such as the movie Something's Gotta Give and the British television series 10 Years Younger. Broadly defined, "postfeminism" encompasses a set of assumptions that feminism accomplished its goals and is now a thing of the past. Yet, as the essays show, postfeminist discourses of transformation and empowerment are based on a limited vision of gender equality as already achieved yet somehow still unsatisfactory. Postfeminism is defined by class, age, and racial exclusions; it is youth-obsessed and white and middle-class by default. Anchored in consumption as a strategy and leisure as a site for the production of the self, postfeminist mass media takes for granted that the pleasures and lifestyles with which it is associated are somehow universally shared and, perhaps more significantly, universally accessible. Essays by feminist film, media, and literature scholars based in the United States and United Kingdom provide an array of perspectives on the social and political implications of postfeminism. Among several essays investigating the origins of this pervasive cultural phenomenon is a compelling argument that postfeminism is more than a simple backlash against second-wave feminism. Other essays engage with specific media forms, including magazines, mainstream and independent cinema, popular music, and broadcast genres from primetime drama to reality television. Contributors examine postfeminist phenomena such as self-fashioning through makeovers and cosmetic surgery, the "metrosexual" male, and the "black chick flick." Interrogating Postfeminism demonstrates not only the viability of, but also the necessity for, a powerful feminist critique of contemporary popular culture.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 376 pages
  • Publisher: Duke University Press (11 Dec 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0822340321
  • ISBN-13: 978-0822340324
  • Product Dimensions: 24 x 16 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 476,423 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description


"This collection is just what I've been looking for: a smart feminist analysis of the curious phenomenon of postfeminism. The editors and contributors provide ample and intelligent criticism of 'commodity feminism' and the lies of 'self-empowerment' in myriad makeover shows, plastic surgery ads, and female action films, without belittling the power, appeal, and sheer gusto of the myths of empowerment, diversity, and 'girl power' in contemporary culture. Interrogating Postfeminism demonstrates that announcements of the 'death' of feminism have been premature."--Pamela Robertson Wojcik, author of Guilty Pleasures: Feminist Camp from Mae West to Madonna "This is a benchmark text: rich, authoritative, timely. Bringing together work by key authors on most of the significant phenomena and genres of 'postfeminist' culture, it will convince readers of the necessity of confronting the term."--Patricia White, author of Uninvited: Classical Hollywood Cinema and Lesbian Representability

About the Author

Yvonne Tasker is a professor of film and television studies at the University of East Anglia. She is the author of "Working Girls: Gender and Sexuality in Popular Cinema" and "Spectacular Bodies: Gender, Genre, and the Action Cinema "as well as the editor of "Action and Adventure Cinema."Diane Negra is a professor of film and television studies at the University of East Anglia. She is the author of "Off-White Hollywood: American Culture and Ethnic Female Stardom"; the editor of "The Irish in Us: Irishness, Performativity, and Popular Culture"; and a coeditor of "A Feminist Reader in Early Cinema," the latter two of which are both also published by Duke University Press.

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5.0 out of 5 stars Insightful and well-written 23 Aug 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Useful for scholars, students and anyone interested in thoughtful interrogation of popular culture and the politics of gender. Well-written and accessible, but without being simplistic or patronising, or as is often the case with academic texts, over-written.
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4.0 out of 5 stars good 30 July 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
quality product, good service
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
2 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not witty 24 Oct 2012
By K. Dixon - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Lots of contemporary "postfeminist" popular culture does indeed lack a notion of political movement of any kind, including feminist movement (not the only omission: think of how little we ever see work on TV, movies, song lyrics, etc.). But there's quite of bit of wit and humor expressed in pop culture. Not so much in this volume, which is often grindingly dedicated to an analysis that does not represent any of the enjoyment that diverse media do offer the audience/users. A good topic of future study might be why today's social scientists have no truck with the humanities or the arts, as though "culture" was only the product of large forces (which it assuredly also is), never apprehended by sentient, sensuous beings who may occasionally have something of a critical knack. Interrogating Postfeminism: Gender and the Politics of Popular Culture: 1st (First) Edition
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