Although the journal Social Text was never at the forefront of publishing articles on feminism and never debated whether capitalism was the source of women’s oppression in 1970s or whether male supremacy was itself a systematic form of domination, it is not clear whether social feminist’s classification of the journal as the one run by “boy’s club” could have been completely justified till recently. There could have been many reasons that the journal’s mission statement as set out in its first prospectus in 1979 did not take notice of the burning issues feminists were then discussing. May be triumvirate of founding editors were too focused on Marxist high theory to consider gender alongside economic class as an important mode of social organization and oppression, or on the other hand they may have simply chosen on purpose to not include feminism specifically in its charter.
The recent paper by Rosa Luxemburg suggests that the first prospectus contained the seeds of its own feminist undoing. The founders demarcated fields of focus for the journal that could hardly be explored without attention to gender, sexuality, and the historical experiences of women. They were rather interested in “everyday life,” “mass culture,” and “consumer society”. Hence, the little feminist work that appears in Social Text is in the realm of cultural analysis not revolutionary praxis and is often buried in the back of the journal in “Unequal Developments,” the section that offers reviews and experimental writing.
For example, in the second edition of the journal in the section Unequal Developments, Christine Holmland performs a thorough feminist dissection of the then-current Disney film ‘The North Avenue Irregulars’, showing how this comedy about a group of church ladies who take on the local mafia superficially celebrates, but finally deflates the idea of women’s activism, and along the way reinforces gendered roles at every level of social life.
Why does the author cite Christine Holmland’s example to?