Can accessible and clear writing styles unlock the power of feminist theory? Can clearly articulated ideas change the world? Some academic feminists think so. They feel that feminist theory should be measured against its ability to contribute to social change. Anything less and their work would look merely academic. Patti Lather's work, judging by her recent article, "Troubling Clarity: The Politics of Accessible Language" (Fall 1996), has been criticized by other feminists precisely because her desire to appeal to intramural readers appears to overshadow her commitment to extramural change. Gaby Weiner (1993), for example, implies that Lather's use of dense prose denies equal access to the interesting ideas that her complicated style of writing contains. Weiner assumes, as do other feminists, that feminist theory in education should be written in a clear and accessible way so that it can reach beyond the classroom to edify the world. Lather responds to this call for clarity by defending her complex writing style and her desire "to be heard," as she writes, "in the halls of High Theory." She justifies her position by pointing out that academic feminists "can't do everything and that the struggle demands contestation on every front" (p. 526).

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