Essay about Ruth Frankenberg

863 WordsApr 9, 20094 Pages
In Ruth Frankenberg’s book, White Women: Race Matters. On the Social Construction of Whiteness, her main argument is that ‘race shapes white women’s lives.’ As the reader continues on they are profoundly convinced by her argument. Through the use of gender, race, class, and nation Frankenberg’s analysis is full of incitement and quite telling. This chapter elaborates on Frankenberg’s statement that ‘race shapes white women’s lives’. Ruth begins by comparing this statement to those that are more commonly heard, such as how gender shapes the lives of men and women. She then begins to elaborate on her theory by bringing to the reader’s attention to the broad perspective of ‘whiteness.’ Frankenberg explores the idea of two analytic…show more content…
Frankenberg’s explanation of why white women did not understand the significance of race was due to the fact that they were not race privileged. These individuals were not privileged because they were not in a position to see the effects of racism on their lives nor that of the impact of society, in a way they were blinded from racism. When reflecting on Frankenberg opinion and arguments it is seen that she holds the ideas of third-wave feminism. It is through Frankenberg’s main focus on race, with less emphasis on women’s rights and women’s reflection of a sexist structure of power, that leads one to believe that Frankenberg’s is a third-wave feminist. Not to mention that she also comments on this book being in the process of making it in the 1980’s when the second-wave feminists only lasted till the 1980’s. Frankenberg’s theory was only visible after the introduction, however, certain ideas were visible. Further, the thesis was only discovered after reflecting on Frankenberg ideas and arguments. Frankenberg's thesis states that, race shapes white women's lives through a system of racial innocence, and deconstructs racism and challenges it in the daily activities of white women. In Frankenberg arguments she use unfamiliar wording to elaborate on her way of thinking. For example, she uses words such as ‘whiteness’ which she defines as the race that shapes white women’s lives. She
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