Both Shedding and The Wanderground were predicated upon two basic cultural feminist assumptions: (1) that gender difference was given, and (2) that women’s “difference” should be seen as positive. It was given because there were historical and biological factors, they believed, that distinguished women from men in essential and thus unalterable ways. It should be seen as positive, they argued, because women were not just different from men; they were the better people. In their view, it was not the construction-or even fact-of difference that was oppressive to women but the discriminatory way in which this difference was valued. In short, it was not gender difference that needed to be called into question or changed, but its valuation: “difference” became the rallying point for a cultural feminist “identity politics.” The argument was that women didn’t have to question or change who they were; they merely had to affirm it.