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The French RepublicHistory, Values, Debates$
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Edward Ducler Berenson, Vincent Duclert, and Christophe Prochasson

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780801449017

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801449017.001.0001

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Feminism and the Republic

Feminism and the Republic

(p.289) 32 Feminism and the Republic
The French Republic

Karen Offen

Cornell University Press

This chapter portrays the feminist struggle for women's rights and emancipation following the events of the French Revolution as well as the five French Republics. It examines their roots dating from the early fifteenth century to the feminist movement's more contemporary successes and failures of the later Republics. Unlike so many feminists in English-speaking and Scandinavian countries, most French feminists understood individual autonomy in a relational way, emphasizing their unique public role as mothers—mothers of future French citizens and citizen-mothers active in civil society if not in government as such. This inflection of feminism was particularly evident during the later French Republics, from the Third into the early years of the Fifth, though it changed dramatically in the 1970s.

Keywords:   féministe, women's rights, women's emancipation, feminism, French feminists, citizen-mothers, French feminism

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