Synopses & Reviews
In a work with far-reaching implications, Chela Sandoval does no less than revise the genealogy of theory over the past thirty years, inserting what she terms "U.S. Third World feminism" into the narrative in a way that thoroughly alters our perspective on contemporary culture and subjectivity.
What Sandoval has identified is a language, a rhetoric of resistance to postmodern cultural conditions. U.S liberation movements of the post-World War II era generated specific modes of oppositional consciousness. Out of these emerged a new activity of consciousness and language Sandoval calls the "methodology of the oppressed". This methodology -- born of the strains of the cultural and identity struggles that currently mark global exchange -- holds out the possibility of a new historical moment, a new citizen-subject, and a new form of alliance consciousness and politics.
Utilizing semiotics and U.S. Third World feminist criticism, Sandoval demonstrates how this methodology mobilizes love as a category of critical analysis. Rendering this approach in all its specifics, Methodology of the Oppressed gives rise to an alternative mode of criticism opening new perspectives on a theoretical, literary, aesthetic, social movement, or psychic expression.
"Methodology of the Oppressed
represents a major contribution to theory and the understanding of contemporary consciousness. Sandoval has created a cornucopia of terms, concepts, and modes of analysis. Consolidating the work of a remarkable range of scholars, she takes the next step in proposing a genuine alternative to the blind alleys in which existing theory often finds itself." —Mary Louise Pratt, author of Imperial Eyes
"In this brilliantly innovative work, Chela Sandoval demands that intellectuals interested in democratizing power venture into new political, theoretical territories to listen to and participate in conversations heretofore largely inaudible across the borders of subjectivity. Ground-breaking." —American Quarterly
"At a time when the unfriendly ghosts of identity politics still haunt the hallways of academia, this book should be considered necessary reading for educators and cultural workers concerned with struggles for social justice in the twenty-first century. Sandoval’s book has originality. Sandoval is succinct in baring the problems of postmodern era while recognizing its enormous contributions as a mode of social thought, and shows us what may lay over the horizon. If this book is an accurate indication of the future of social movements and critical thought, we have reason to be optimistic." —Convergence
"Sandoval’s book brilliantly puts into practice the method, theory, and politics that she describes as U.S. Third World feminism and its particular mode of differential consciousness. Methodology of the Oppressed is a tour de force of theoretical genealogies." —Feminist Studies