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Why should feminists engage with critical theory? Can feminists overcome the patriarchal problems within current notions of social totality? What can a feminist critical theory tell us about the gendered inequality of contemporary global issues?

This book highlights how critical theory argues against relations of domination and advocates for emancipation as it envisions a social totality that goes beyond the particular spheres of society that feminist work usually concentrates upon. Specifically, it explores how the notion of social totality is developed within the work of Horkheimer and Adorno, though it problematizes the patriarchal assumptions that underlie the domination they envisage in society. The book then goes on develop a feminist notion of social totality, explaining how a critical engagement with research on primitive accumulation, social reproduction and intersectionality, which examines gendered division of labour, can shed light on the disproportionate effects of the financial crisis and austerity on women.

Introduction: Why should feminists engage with critical theory? / 2. Contemporary Relevance of Feminist Critical Theory in Global Political Economy / 3. Interrogating the Social Totality of Critical Theory / 3. Social Totality and Primitive Accumulation / 4. Social Totality and Social Reproduction / 5. Social Totality and Intersectionality / Conclusions: Making a case for a feminist materialist critical theory

Daniela Tepe-Belfrage is Faculty Research Fellow in the Department of Social Science at the University of Sheffield, UK. She is the author of The Myth about Global Civil Society (2011) and has published many articles in top journals, including International Politics, Journal of International Relations and Development and Review of International Political Economy

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