Hermeneutic, phenomenological, genealogical and postmodern critiques of science may be conceived as a radicalization of those contemporary analyses of science which take their point of departure from the fundamental principle of complementarity and recognize that science can never be a mirror of nature; that there are no neutral observers; that all experiments are theory-laden; that there are no simple facts. These perspectives sensitize us to the historical, political, social, and cultural dimensions of science. They force us to revisit the epistemological (...) claims of science and insist that we ask whether and to what extent the idea of scientific privilege can be sustained. (shrink)
When the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia convicted the Bosnian Serb soldiers who used rape as a weapon of war of violating the human right to sexual self determination and of crimes against humanity, it transformed vulnerability from a mark of feminine weakness to a shared human condition. The court's judgment directs us to note the ways in which the exploitation of our bodied vulnerability is an assault on our dignity. It alerts us to the ways in which (...) the body of human rights law is a law of bodies; to the ways in which our desire for intimacy creates communal ties that ground our personal and social identities; to the ways in which the symbolic meanings of our bodies are integral to our sense of integrity and worth; and to the ways in which gender structures which position men as protectors of women make it possible for rape to be used as an effective and criminal weapon of war. (shrink)
This essay argues that the ambiguities of the just war tradition, sifted through a feminist critique, provides the best framework currently available for translating the ethical entitlement to human dignity into concrete feminist political practices. It offers a gendered critique of war that pursues the just war distinction between legitimate and illegitimate targets of wartime violence and provides a gendered analysis of the peace which the just war tradition obliges us to preserve and pursue.
Jean Pierre Boulé's Sartre, Self Formation and Masculinities argues that we cannot adequately understand Sartre without taking account of the unique ways in which he negotiated the gender mandates of patriarchy. Taking Boulé's cue, I call on Lacan, Cixous and Beauvoir to interrogate Sartre's relationship to women, to his body and to writing. I argue for Boulé's approach but against several of his conclusions. Further, I credit Boulé with providing ammunition for challenging Lacan's universal account of the mirror stage, and (...) for pushing me to read Beauvoir's "Must we Burn Sade?" as a critique of Sartre's betrayal of the erotic's ethical demands. (shrink)
: Ofelia Schutte's relationship to Nietzsche is contentious. Sometimes she identifies him as an ally. Sometimes she calls him an enemy. Appealing to Nietzsche's abolition of the appearance reality distinction and to his discussions of women as skeptics, I turn to Ofelia's discussions of the Madres de la Plaza de Mayo to suggest that their protests can be understood as a Nietzschean politics of transvaluation where the myth of the mother and the materialities of women's bodies become the ground of (...) the demand for justice. (shrink)
: On February 22, 2001, three Bosnian Serb soldiers were found guilty of crimes against humanity. Their offense? Rape. This is the first time that rape has been prosecuted and condemned as a crime against humanity. Appealing to Jacques Derrida's democracy of the perhaps and Judith Butler's politics of performative contradiction, I see this judgment inaugurating a politics of the vulnerable body which challenges current understandings of evil, war crimes, and crimes against humanity.
: This paper may be read as a reclamation project. It argues, with Simone de Beauvoir, that patriarchal marriage is both a perversion of the meaning of the couple and an institution in transition. Parting from those who have given up on marriage, I identify marriage as existing at the intersection of the ethical and the political and argue that whether or not one chooses marriage, feminists ought not abandon marriage as an institution.
Abstract Students arrive at their Introduction to Philosophy classes unsure of the nature of Philosophy and sceptical of its value. They usually assume that philosophy is some abstract thing which, whatever it is, is irrelevant to everyday life. This essay explores the ways in which the figures, philosophies and lives of Socrates and Bertrand Russell serve as models of the philosophic perspective. It develops the thesis that we can, by appealing to Socrates and Russell as role models, counter the assumption (...) that Philosophy is an ivory tower enterprise and show students that an intimate and essential relationship exists between the process of rational reflection and the living of a moral life. (shrink)