NEW DEFINITIONS OF ‘KNOWLEDGE’
The biggest achievement of feminist sociology has been the changes in the very definition of feminist sociological knowledge. The depth of work in, for example, Ahmed et al. (2000) and Andermahr et al. (2000), would have been beyond the wildest dreams of women in sociology in 1968.
The final achievement of feminist sociology to be addressed in this chapter is of a quite different kind. Rather than a positive indicator, it is a negative one. The polemical backlash against feminist sociology is, in itself, an achievement which must be explored. Counter-arguments are, by their very existence, a mark of the importance of feminist ideas in the discipline (Clark et al., 1996). During the 1990s several male sociologists accused feminism, and feminist sociology of going too far: particularly by destroying fatherhood, male authority in the family and the concept of the ‘breadwinner’.