By Robin Truth Goodman (auth.)
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Additional resources for Gender Work: Feminism after Neoliberalism
Though Hennessy recognizes that such relations are forged within regimes of surplus labor extraction, her descriptions focus on personal choices, social bonds, and erotic desires that influence the ways associations are formed and responded to outside of direct economic activity but deny the theoretical or ideological aspects. Similarly, feminist theorist Elizabeth Grosz elaborates that what feminism needs is “an account of the place of futurity” inducting “a future different but not detached from the past and present” (2004: 91)—that is, a phenomenological account of time that privileges “a wide range of possible variation or development of current existence” (2004: 91), where the past is called into the present by the future as difference (Grosz seems to be constantly arguing against a haunting claim that the past and the future are the same as the present, or repetitions of it, or undifferentiable from it, though the person who would make such a claim remains unnamed).
She grants that Marx is able to elucidate more aspects of women’s oppression than other theories—for example, the relationship between production and reproduction, the role of women in producing surplus value by contributing unpaid labor. Yet, “to explain women’s usefulness to capitalism,” she continues, “is one thing. To argue that this usefulness explains the genesis of the oppression of women is quite another” (163). Sifting through the ethnographic record, Rubin observes instances of patriarchal power that exceed The Gender of Working Time ● 39 women’s induction into industrial capitalism.
Marx’s descriptions show gender difference to be tied up with the fluidity of past time in the present time of production. As their working time repeats and preserves the past, it is inconsistent with the present, opening it to historical separation, irresolution, and transition Patriarchy, the Autonomy of Culture, and the Critique of Ideology The relationship of women’s work to the category of productive labor can be said to be a question that governed the development of feminist theory from the late 1960s on.