Generational Feminism has been exhibited in
hosted in the women's study center at the University of Houston
a juried exhibition that honors the evolution of feminism into the 21st century @ vine street studios.
(KUHF Front Row review with Dr. Elizabeth Gregory and Alison Young)

Generational Feminism
Kathryn Kelley

I am a woman. Both at a macro (women in our culture) and a micro (myself) level there is an evolution of self-definition, valuing and role one plays within ones tribe and society.

First generation feminism (within the arts) of the late 1960s and 1970s was responding to the females’ lack of voice in conjunction with the misrepresentation of women and their uniquely feminine experience. The feminists, led by artists and critics such as Miriam Schapiro, Judy Chicago, and Lucy Lippard, sought to promote a gender consciousness that would make evident the female sensibility. This sensibility focused on the female’s body, sexuality and social roles. They raised gender consciousness to improve woman’s position with her self, society and the art world. They unmasked their experiences in marriage, childrearing, sex, work and culture as not unique but rather a shared experience among women.

Second generation feminism, having the negative association of being angry, men-hating, feminazis, was responding to the inequalities found in the American work place. Whereas the first generation was taking back and redefining what it meant to be a woman, the second generation sought to redefine woman’s value both monetarily and legally in the work place (relative to the white male). Though there are significant negative connotations with this phase it seems to have been necessary step in the evolution of defining women, women’s value and role within society. Currently there still remains a monetary gap in the valuing of men and women.

The current generation of woman, maybe as a backlash to second generation feminism, do not label ourselves as feminists. We expect, feel entitled to, all the advantages and status acquired by the first two generations of feminism, yet we do not work toward furthering either cause. What do we do? We fully embrace our market-driven culture; we shop.