Sexual Dualism and Women's Self-Creation: On the Advantages and Disadvantages of Reading Nietzsche for Feminists,"
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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In Peter Burgard (ed.), Nietzsche and the Feminine. University of Virginia Press (1994)
Although Nietzsche's writings clearly deliver an unhealthy dose of misogyny, it must be noticed that they also contain the seeds of a deconstruction of that misogyny. This paper exposes one set of deconstructing elements of Nietzsche's works with respect to his views on women. The wider philosophical context of Nietzsche's thought provides grounds for taking seriously several passages of The Gay Science that reveal a more sympathetic understanding of women, since these passages take seriously Nietzsche's anti-dualism, his perspectivism, and his early existentialist notion of the self. The destabilizing force of these passages, combined with Nietzsche's remarks about women within this philosophical context, reveals that Nietzsche's works promise more insight than many feminists have previously noted. A feminist analysis of Nietzsche's anti-dualism, perspectivism and discussion of the power of naming promises to inform contemporary feminist concerns about the importance of women's articulating our lives.
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