Feminism and solidarity on the left: rethinking the unhappy marriage metaphor

Kirsty Alexander, Catherine Eschle, Jennifer Morrison, Mairi Tulbure

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In the context of efforts to revive and reconfigure the left, fraught solidarity relations between feminism and other left forces are again under the political spotlight. This article revisits the widespread use of the ‘unhappy marriage’ metaphor to characterise these relations, given that metaphors play a significant role in structuring political discourse and action. We argue that the metaphor has been used in uncritical and limiting ways, and turn to feminist reconfigurations of the institutions of marriage to develop a more expansive, reflexive conceptual lens. We then apply this lens to three case studies of left organising in Scotland around the time of the 2012-2014 Scottish independence referendum, showing that the expanded marriage metaphor captures a more complex story of solidarity relations. Nonetheless, aspects of the marriage metaphor remain irredeemable, and we end with a call for the continued development of alternative frameworks that imagine political solidarity differently.

LanguageEnglish
Pages1-20
Number of pages20
JournalPolitical Studies
Early online date19 Mar 2019
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 19 Mar 2019

Fingerprint

feminism
solidarity
metaphor
marriage
referendum
discourse

Keywords

  • feminism
  • marriage
  • solidarity
  • metaphor
  • Scotland
  • Scottish independence referendum 2014

Cite this

Alexander, Kirsty ; Eschle, Catherine ; Morrison, Jennifer ; Tulbure, Mairi. / Feminism and solidarity on the left : rethinking the unhappy marriage metaphor. In: Political Studies. 2019 ; pp. 1-20.
@article{18c8a82571fd48c8984d266aa23d3bfd,
title = "Feminism and solidarity on the left: rethinking the unhappy marriage metaphor",
abstract = "In the context of efforts to revive and reconfigure the left, fraught solidarity relations between feminism and other left forces are again under the political spotlight. This article revisits the widespread use of the ‘unhappy marriage’ metaphor to characterise these relations, given that metaphors play a significant role in structuring political discourse and action. We argue that the metaphor has been used in uncritical and limiting ways, and turn to feminist reconfigurations of the institutions of marriage to develop a more expansive, reflexive conceptual lens. We then apply this lens to three case studies of left organising in Scotland around the time of the 2012-2014 Scottish independence referendum, showing that the expanded marriage metaphor captures a more complex story of solidarity relations. Nonetheless, aspects of the marriage metaphor remain irredeemable, and we end with a call for the continued development of alternative frameworks that imagine political solidarity differently.",
keywords = "feminism, marriage, solidarity, metaphor, Scotland, Scottish independence referendum 2014",
author = "Kirsty Alexander and Catherine Eschle and Jennifer Morrison and Mairi Tulbure",
year = "2019",
month = "3",
day = "19",
doi = "10.1177/0032321718817479",
language = "English",
pages = "1--20",
journal = "Political Studies",
issn = "0032-3217",

}

Feminism and solidarity on the left : rethinking the unhappy marriage metaphor. / Alexander, Kirsty; Eschle, Catherine; Morrison, Jennifer; Tulbure, Mairi.

In: Political Studies, 19.03.2019, p. 1-20.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Feminism and solidarity on the left

T2 - Political Studies

AU - Alexander, Kirsty

AU - Eschle, Catherine

AU - Morrison, Jennifer

AU - Tulbure, Mairi

PY - 2019/3/19

Y1 - 2019/3/19

N2 - In the context of efforts to revive and reconfigure the left, fraught solidarity relations between feminism and other left forces are again under the political spotlight. This article revisits the widespread use of the ‘unhappy marriage’ metaphor to characterise these relations, given that metaphors play a significant role in structuring political discourse and action. We argue that the metaphor has been used in uncritical and limiting ways, and turn to feminist reconfigurations of the institutions of marriage to develop a more expansive, reflexive conceptual lens. We then apply this lens to three case studies of left organising in Scotland around the time of the 2012-2014 Scottish independence referendum, showing that the expanded marriage metaphor captures a more complex story of solidarity relations. Nonetheless, aspects of the marriage metaphor remain irredeemable, and we end with a call for the continued development of alternative frameworks that imagine political solidarity differently.

AB - In the context of efforts to revive and reconfigure the left, fraught solidarity relations between feminism and other left forces are again under the political spotlight. This article revisits the widespread use of the ‘unhappy marriage’ metaphor to characterise these relations, given that metaphors play a significant role in structuring political discourse and action. We argue that the metaphor has been used in uncritical and limiting ways, and turn to feminist reconfigurations of the institutions of marriage to develop a more expansive, reflexive conceptual lens. We then apply this lens to three case studies of left organising in Scotland around the time of the 2012-2014 Scottish independence referendum, showing that the expanded marriage metaphor captures a more complex story of solidarity relations. Nonetheless, aspects of the marriage metaphor remain irredeemable, and we end with a call for the continued development of alternative frameworks that imagine political solidarity differently.

KW - feminism

KW - marriage

KW - solidarity

KW - metaphor

KW - Scotland

KW - Scottish independence referendum 2014

UR - http://journals.sagepub.com/loi/psx

U2 - 10.1177/0032321718817479

DO - 10.1177/0032321718817479

M3 - Article

SP - 1

EP - 20

JO - Political Studies

JF - Political Studies

SN - 0032-3217

ER -