In Defense of Self-Defense

Philosophical Papers 38 (3):363-380 (2011)
Abstract
Some feminist theorists have argued that emphasizing women's self-defense mistakenly emphasizes women's behavior and choices rather than male aggression as a cause of sexual violence. I argue here that such critiques of self-defense are misguided, and do not sufficiently take into account the ways in which feminist self-defense courses can constitute embodied transformations of the meanings of femininity and rape. While certainly not sufficient to counter a rape culture by themselves, self-defense courses should remain a crucial element in feminist anti-rape activism
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