The Physical Feminism of Women's Self-Defense
Subjects:Women's & Gender Studies
An examination of women's self-defense culture and its relationship to feminism.
I was once a frightened feminist. So begins Martha McCaughey's odyssey into the dynamic world of women's self- defense, a culture which transforms women involved with it and which has equally profound implications for feminist theory and activism.
Unprecedented numbers of American women are learning how to knock out, maim, even kill men who assault them. Sales of mace and pepper spray have skyrocketed. Some 14 million women own handguns. From behind the scenes at gun ranges, martial arts dojos, fitness centers offering Cardio Combat, and in padded attacker courses like Model Mugging, Real Knockouts demonstrates how self-defense trains women out of the femininity that makes them easy targets for men's abuse.
And yet much feminist thought, like the broader American culture, seems deeply ambivalent about women's embrace of violence, even in self-defense. Investigating the connection between feminist theory and women physically fighting back, McCaughey found self-defense culture to embody, literally, a new brand of feminism.
"..complex, densely argued, and original...'"
—Mary Zeiss Stange, Women’s Review of Books
New York University Press is proud to make many of our titles available in eBook editions. Below is the list of vendors that carry our titles in electronic format. Each vendor has its own pricing and delivery policies. Please follow the links below for more information.
Please list your name, institutional affiliation, course name and size, and institution address. NYU Press will cancel exam copy orders if information cannot be verified.