In this extract Kristeva argues that a new generation of feminists needs to reconcile motherhood (taking place in what she calls monu­ mental and cyclical time) with politics (taking place in what she calls linear time). If we fail to take theoretical account of women’s desire for and enjoyment of motherhood, she insists, we lay ourselves open to a resurgence of religion and mysticism, the only places, in the past, where women have been able to express feelings associated with motherhood. She argues that recent feminists, in focusing on feminine subjectivity and the establishment of woman as ‘Truth’, have been as sexist as patriarchal men. However, she takes the view that the earlier, pre-1968, generation of feminists, in concentrating on entry into the existing social, political and economic structures, simply allowed themselves to be assimilated into the meanings and values of the phallus. Anarchy and a continual ‘fight to the death’ over difference, she argues, can only be avoided if the three feminist approaches based on different conceptions of time can be allowed to intermingle in a parallel existence. In future, instead of using those who are different as a place to project our unacceptable symbolic castration in the form of blame, we should withdraw these projections and fight out the contradictions between ‘good’ and ‘bad’, ‘masculinity’ and ‘femininity’ within our own identities. In other words, we must interiorise ‘or take responsibility for’ the founding moment of our existence, symbolic castration and sexual difference, instead of projecting it destructively into the external world.