In the Name of Womens Rights: The Rise of Femonationalism
Femonationalism, Neoliberalism, and Social Reproduction
Chapter 4 focuses on one largely overlooked point of convergence between anti-Islam feminist, nationalist, and neoliberal politics: namely, the policies pertaining to non-western migrant women’s “economic” integration. The chapter begins by showing that the demand that these women participate in work is largely framed within a context of workfare. Second, it demonstrates that the implementation of these policies has functioned through actively directing non-western migrant women toward the care and domestic sector, which has traditionally been conceived as “feminine.” The contradiction emerges when we recall that it is precisely against this gendered division of labor—men in the public sphere, women in the private—that the feminist movement has historically struggled. To understand such a contradiction, the chapter reconstructs the complex feminist genealogy of economic independence, and the related concepts of productive work, which has historically been placed in opposition to social reproduction. This critical reconstruction enables us to better grasp how some feminists and femocrats have converged with the ideology of femonationalism.