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The Biopolitics of Gender
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments Introduction Chapter 1: The Birth of Gender: Social Control, Hermaphroditism, and the New Postwar Sexual Apparatus Chapter 2: The Sex/Gender Split, Transsexualism, and the Psychoanalytic Engineering of Capitalist Life Chapter 3: Feminist Deployments of Gender Chapter 4: The Demographic Problematization of Gender Chapter 5: Gender Equality as Neoliberal Governmentality Chapter 6: Feminism and Biopolitics: Complicities and Counter-Movements Notes References Index

About the Author

Jemima Repo is a Research Fellow at the University of Helsinki, Finland, and Birkbeck College, University of London.

Reviews

"The Biopolitics of Gender is an illuminating and important study, which reconfigures many taken-for-granted assumptions about the notion of gender and its role in feminist theory as well as politics. It is essential reading not only for feminist scholars, but also for those engaged in the task of critiquing neoliberal power structures." -- IBoglA!rka Kiss, Hungarian Journal of English and American Studies (24.1) "The Biopolitics of Gender offers a revolutionary overview of the concept of gender. ... I cannot overstate the importance of such a consideration of gender at this point in time; it is essential to review the usefulness of gender in feminist arguments by taking into account the background against which the term was devised." --Journal of Gender Studies "[Repo's] welcome contribution offers an innovative and powerful response to the long-standing question: 'What does Foucault have to say to feminist theory?'" --Feminist Review "A work of critique as emancipatory knowledge-production, this book carves out new openings that must be returned to, expanded upon, deliberated, as we carry on the always precarious work of our entanglements, strategic contingencies, the patient labor of our diverse and unsettled inquiries in the name of unempty dreams." --Hypatia "Given that 'gender is not a synonym for women,' what then does it signify? How have feminist challenges to biological determinism become bureaucratized as capitalist biopolitics and 'state feminisms'? In this provocative genealogical study of gender, Jemima Repo answers these questions and challenges us to 'unlearn' what we think we already know." --Terrell Carver, Professor of Political Theory, University of Bristol "In this groundbreaking reappraisal of both Foucault and feminism, Repo shows how gender became an apparatus for the regulation of life processes, and gender equality policy became embedded in governmental, bioeconomic projects to optimize population management. Such projects have, she argues, been fortified by feminism while also relying on disturbing differentiations between women's reproductive worth. Boldly arguing for a provisional suspension of 'all theories of gender,' The Biopolitics of Gender assesses the distribution of inequality constitutive of gender equality." --Penelope Lisa Deutscher, Professor of Philosophy, Northwestern University "Gender is a useful category for feminism. However, it is also an instrument of biopower. Gender is a double-edged sword - both critical and normative. Jemima Repo's powerful argument elaborates on Foucault's work to trace the genealogy of gender from the invention of the concept in a medical context in the 1950s through its feminist appropriation in the 1970s to contemporary neoliberal uses of gender equality. This original and important book thus turns the tables around: it makes trouble in gender studies, as feminist politics appear entangled in neoliberal biopolitics." --Eric Fassin, Professor of Sociology, Paris 8 University "Consistently attentive to the intersections of sexuality, race, and class, the book will be essential reading for students of political theory, women's studies, and queer theory." --CHOICE "This is a groundbreaking work. Jemima Repo has written a genealogy of gender that upends common approaches to gender in feminism. Throughout, Repo's arguments are scholarly and provocative, and they left this reader unable to think about gender in the way I had before reading the book." --Perspectives on Politics "A genealogical approach to social science's objects and categories helps in pushing further and partly displacing the very function of critical discourse. In The Biopolitics of Gender, Repo fully achieves this goal, retracing the emergence of gender theory and showing its centrality in mechanisms of contemporary biopolitical governmentality. Repo radically challenges the way in which gender has been mobilized by feminists, focusing in particular on the Anglo-American tradition, arguing that gender politics has finally come to foster the disciplinary and normative function of gender initiated by psychiatrists and demographers." --Society and Space "The importance of the questions raised, and careful attention paid to government gender deployments, renders this book invaluable to a vast inter-disciplinary audience. It cautions against accepting macro-level political efforts as non-normative and "equal." More academics, especially in the humanities and social sciences, should consider the utility of the biopolitical framework. Repo's work may be one of many methodological approaches, but is arguably one of the most robust and powerful in its theoretical breadth and substance." - Corina Schulze, University of South Alabama

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