Feminism Unmodified: Discourses on Life and Law

Feminism Unmodified:
Discourses on Life and Law
Catharine A. MacKinnonHarvard University

Feminism Unmodified: Discourses on Life and Law is a 1987 book by feminist legal scholar Catharine MacKinnon. The book is a collection of essays by MacKinnon delivered during the 1980s, in which she makes a radical feminist critique of pornography and liberal feminism.

From Harvard University Press: Through these engaged works on issues such as rape, abortion, athletics, sexual harassment, and pornography, MacKinnon seeks feminism on its own terms, unconstrained by the limits of prior traditions. She argues that viewing gender as a matter of sameness and difference—as virtually all existing theory and law have done—covers up the reality of gender, which is a system of social hierarchy, an imposed inequality of power. She reveals a political system of male dominance and female subordination that sexualizes power for men and powerlessness for women. She analyzes the failure of organized feminism, particularly legal feminism, to alter this condition, exposing the way male supremacy gives women a survival stake in the system that destroys them.

Table of Contents

Introduction: The Art of the Impossible
Part One: Approaches
… Not by Law Alone: From a Debate with Phyllis Schlafly
… Difference and Dominance: On Sex Discrimination
… Desire and Power
… Whose Culture? A Case Note on Martinez v. Santa Clara Pueblo
… On Exceptionality: Women as Women in Law

Part Two: Applications
… A Rally against Rape
… Sex and Violence: A Perspective
… Privacy v. Equality: Beyond Roe v. Wade
… Sexual Harassment: Its First Decade in Court
… Women, Self-Possession, and Sport

Part Three: Pornography
… Linda’s Life and Andrea’s Work
… “More Than Simply a Magazine”: Playboy’s Money
… Not a Moral Issue
… Francis Biddle’s Sister: Pornography, Civil Rights, and Speech
… On Collaboration
… The Sexual Politics of the First Amendment