The feminist movement is still going strong, though today’s young third wave feminists could learn a thing or two from the activists of decades past. In her book, Radical Feminism: Feminist Activism in Movement, Finn Mackay delves into the history of radical feminist activism; exploring struggles, debates, and triumphs. A longtime activist herself, Mackay founded the London Feminist Network and revived the London Reclaim the Night in 2004, sparking a national resurgence of the protest march.
The book draws upon interviews with activist women Mackay conducted for her doctoral research, offering readers inspirational and educational accounts of grassroots, revolutionary feminist activism. She addresses key controversies and debates, including the question of whether men should be permitted to participate in Reclaim the Night marches. The book is not just a historic account, though, as Mackay also demonstrates how patriarchal oppression continues to manifest itself and why radical feminism is still needed today.
After a career in policy work on domestic violence prevention, Mackay is now Lecturer in Sociology at the University of the West of England, UK. Radical Feminism: Feminist Activism in Movement was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2015.
I spoke with her over the phone last week.