This essay makes good sense to me, digitalisation will not of itself foster feminism, liberation, equality or revolution. However there is something missing in this piece too. What IS the impact of the information … er, revolution? is there a shift in the relationships of production? Is whatever it is significant at all when it comes to a Marxist conception of history. Has anyone really examined this fully, I bet they have.
It is important to be able to see all of history as a history of class struggle, makes sense to me. Of course there is ajso a history of the relationships of reproduction (perhaps what the essay below is about.) And there are cultural forces, racial, religious and generational forces. The art is to be able to see what, at any time is “primary”. Even if the history if information from language to the Internet is not “primary” what is its nature? The distribution of the means of information, the ability to have mass peer to peer communication… what does it all mean.
Interesting (see previous post) where Trotsky notes that the revolution in Russia was won by the group that had dialectical materialism, not just bombs. It is important to get all this right.
Class, the Digital, and (Immaterial) Feminism:
Immaterial feminisms have emerged as part of the digital movements of “new economy” and “network society” in order to help capital eliminate old ideological fetters of gender that stand in the way of the expansion of capitalist production and the intensification of the exploitation of labor for profit. By “immaterial feminisms” I mean the network of feminisms—from “cyberfeminism,” to feminist theories of “immaterial labor,” “(im)materiality,” and “new materiality,” to “network feminisms,” “digital feminism” and “technofeminism”—which, as a species of new economy theory, ideologically displace the relation of gender to class, labor, exploitation, and the social relations of production in capitalism by positing a constitutive change in the wage-labor/capital relation brought on by the innovations of “new technologies,” the growth of the service industries and of “knowledge work” (i.e., “immaterial labor”). This is another way of saying that the role of immaterial feminisms in history is to represent as “radical,” “innovative” and as “progress” for women toward human freedom what capital is economically compelled to do to temporarily stave off declines in profit.