2019 — Critical Essay

Stirring the Embers
Preliminary Critical Notes on Xenofeminisms

Isabel de Sena

The Beautiful Warriors: Technofeminist Praxis in the 21st Century

This text aims to stir the embers somewhat, to open a new conversation on XF by addressing a number of fundamental tenets it adopts which I argue are untenable, specifically their conceptualizations of scalability and universality. This critique is by no means exhaustive; it comprises an initial and partial instigation to challenge a publication that though provocative, has subsisted without the oppositional voices that might invigorate the discourse around it. Given the confusing and confused nature of the concepts, but also in a genuine spirit to invite response, the discussions are each translated into a series of questions. The analysis is guided by a number of seminal feminist texts published between 1984 and 2015, which not only offer a direct retaliation to the three concepts mentioned above, but also show their teeth, muscles, and sinews as vigorous narratives from the past and present of feminist practice. In their undying commitment to non-scalability and non-universality, they are quite comfortably invulnerable to being qualified as “petit-bourgeois.”