Creating an activist voice: Re-storing the self in the light of contemporary feminist understandings of power and subjectivity

Document Type

Journal Article


Bridgewater State College


Faculty of Community Services, Education and Social Sciences


School of International, Cultural and Community Studies




Hopkins, L. (2001). Creating an Activist Voice: Re-storying the Self in the Light of Contemporary Feminist Understandings of Power and Subjectivity. Journal of International Women's Studies, 2(2), 1-21. Available here


From 1992-1995 Sandy Newby was enrolled as a mature aged undergraduate student in a course in human services and applied women’s studies at an Australian University. In this paper, in an attempt to uncover the complex processes of re-storying the self in the light of contemporary feminist understandings of subjectivity and power, I explore some dimensions of Sandy’s encounter with such knowledges during her time at university. The narrative focus of this paper is both on Sandy’s engagement with the learning process and on my own experience as a feminist teacher and researcher/biographer. I draw particularly on the work of Friedman (1998), Grosz (1992), Healy (1999), Irigaray (1993). Modjeska (1990), Probyn (1993) and Trinh (1989) to suggest the inseparability of rationality, the passions, and the life force in coming to understand knowledges which enable the re-storying of the self to occur.