Janice A Radway

I suspect a demand for real change in power relations will occur only if women … come to understand that their need for romances is a function of their dependent status as women and of their acceptance of marriage as the only route to female fulfillment. I think we as feminists might help this change along by first learning to recognize that romance reading originates in very real dissatisfaction and embodies a valid, if limited, protest. Then by developing strategies for making that dissatisfaction and its causes consciously available to romance readers and by learning how to encourage that protest in such a way that it will be delivered in the arena of actual social relations rather than acted out in the imagination, we might join hands with women who are, after all, our sisters and together imagine a world whose subsequent creation would lead to the need for a new fantasy altogether.

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