Author: Mary E John
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN/UPC (if available): 019 5639162
Discrepant Dislocations charts a passage between India and the United States, bringing to the fore the importance of location-geographical, intellectual, political-to feminist and postcolonial thought.
Working as an anthropologist-in-reverse, Mary John, an Indian national who completed her doctoral studies in the United States, investigates the structure of knowledge and power in Western academia and beyond. What are the most fruitful ways of building connections between feminists in India and the United States, given that globalization conceals the disproportionate influence of the West upon third-world scholars? Can theory be made to travel in more enabling ways than it has so far?
This book suggests that Western feminists need to reconsider what they are out to learn from the distant places they visit, while feminists in India stand to gain from a more critical and heterogeneous sense of conflict within American feminism today. Following the initial chapter which positions the author within US academic culture, the second chapter discusses the possibilities and constraints governing the travel of theories such as deconstruction and psychoanalysis; the next chapter focuses critically on the potential of gender as a new analytical category ostensibly more open to questions of difference and power relations among women.
The final chapter offers a historical analysis of the emergence of feminist scholarship in India from the 1970s to the present. In each case, Mary John suggests that feminists situate themselves and their work through a politics of location, to counter global forces that are suppressing new and ongoing inequalities between the West and the post colony.
In offering a powerful politics of place, Mary John affirms an alternative way for feminists to engage in dialogue across cultures. Discrepant Dislocations is a major intervention in feminist and postcolonial theory, cultural criticism and anthropology.
Postcolonial Feminists in the Western Intellectual Field:
Anthropologists and Native Informants?
Partial Theories / Composite Theories
Women, Patriarchy, Sex, Gender:
US Feminist theory in Historical Perspective
Closer to Home:
Feminism, Postcolonial Locations, and the Politics of Representation