Bracewell honored for sex wars, anti-pornography feminism article

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Assistant political science professor top recipient, recognized for research in her field

UNK Communications


University of Nebraska at Kearney’s Lorna Bracewell has been recognized by the American Political Science Association for having the nation’s best research paper on feminist political theory.

An assistant professor of political science, Bracewell received the Okin-Young Award for her 2016 article “Beyond Barnard: Liberalism, Anti-pornography Feminism and the Sex Wars.” She was the top recipient in the Women and Politics Research Section.

“Feminism’s sex wars are often portrayed as a two-sided conflict pitting anti-pornography feminists versus sex-radical feminists, a conflict that began at the 1982 conference “The Scholar and The Feminist IX: Towards a Politics of Sexuality” held at Barnard College,” Bracewell says in her abstract.

In her article, Bracewell challenges another view also central to the sex wars: the relationship between anti-pornography feminism and liberalism.

“… I tell the story of how anti-pornography feminism emerged in the early 1970s as an emphatic critique of liberalism and was transformed over the course of the 1980s and 1990s into a widely accepted tenet of liberalism itself,” she writes.

“… I reflect on the implications of this transformation for a more recent development: the mobilization of feminist critiques of gender-based violence in the service of a politics of criminalization and incarceration that Elizabeth Bernstein has dubbed ‘carceral feminism.’’