Radical feminism is a perspective within feminism that calls for a radical reordering of society in which male supremacy is eliminated in all social and economic contexts.
Radical feminists seek to abolish patriarchy by challenging existing social norms and institutions, rather than through a purely political process. This includes challenging the notion of traditional gender roles, opposing the sexual objectification of women, and raising public awareness about such issues as rape and violence against women.
Early radical feminism, arising within second-wave feminism in the 1960s, typically viewed patriarchy as a “transhistorical phenomenon” prior to or deeper than other sources of oppression, “not only the oldest and most universal form of domination but the primary form” and the model for all others. Later politics derived from radical feminism ranged from cultural feminism to more syncretic politics that placed issues of class, economics, etc. on a par with patriarchy as sources of oppression.
Radical feminists locate the root cause of women’s oppression in patriarchal gender relations, as opposed to legal systems (as in liberal feminism) or class conflict (as in anarchist feminism, socialist feminism, and Marxist feminism).