The emergence of queer theory represents a huge leap in our understanding of lesbian and gay peoples. It embodies a context for treating these people as worthy of consideration in their own rights and not as an appendage to general cultural theory. Max Kirsch argues that the current development of this area is in danger of repeating past mistakes in the construction of analyses, and ultimately, social movements. In this way, the book presents an alternative to the current fascination (...) with the abstract categories of identity, culture and difference, and emphasizes the need for a discussion of the importance of communities and role of globalization on queer movements. (shrink)
Collectively, Atkins examines their pursuit of sexual justice, the ideologies of manhood they challenged, the different types of gay spaces they created (geographic, architectural, online), and political obstacles they have encountered.
The Unfinished Revolution compares the post-Second World War histories of the American and British gay and lesbian movements with an eye toward understanding how distinct political institutional environments affect the development, strategies, goals, and outcomes of a social movement. Stephen M. Engel utilizes an electic mix of source materials ranging from the theories of Mancur Olson and Michel Foucault to Supreme Court rulings and film and television dialogue. The two case study chapters function as brief historical sketches to elucidate (...) further the conclusions on theory and whilst being politically-oriented, they also examine gay influence and expansion into mainstream popular culture. The book also includes an appendix that surveys and assesses the analytical potential of five critical understandings of social movements: the classical approach, rational choice, resource mobilization, new social movement theories, and political opportunity structures. It will be of value to academics and students of sociology, political science, and history. (shrink)
This paper explores conservative Christian demands that religious-based objections to providing services to lesbians and gay men should be accommodated by employers and public bodies. Focusing on a series of court judgments, alongside commentators’ critical accounts, the paper explores the dominant interpretation of the conflict as one involving two groups with deeply held, competing interests, and suggests this interpretation can be understood through a social property framework. The paper explores how religious beliefs and sexual orientation are attachments whose power (...) has been unsettled by equality law. But entangled with this property is another—that held in workers’ labour and public bodies’ resources. Arguing against the drive to balance competing interests, the paper uses social property to illuminate the agonistic character of the stakes. At the same time, it questions property as a normative framework for sexual orientation and religious beliefs. (shrink)
It is rare to find honest accounts of the difficulties and dilemmas encountered when conducting sensitive research with vulnerable research populations. This account explores some of the ethical issues raised by a qualitative interview study with lesbians and gay men about their experiences of nursing care. There is tension between the moral duty to conduct research with vulnerable and stigmatized groups in order to improve care, and the inevitable lack of resources that go with such a venture. This increases the (...) risk of harm during the process of research. The risk of harm to both the researchers and the researched is explored and the need for a support structure for both groups is raised. There is a pressing need to develop further understanding about the ways in which the dissemination of research can potentially harm already vulnerable research populations. (shrink)
Here we attempt to define a specifically human ecology within which male reproductive strategies are formulated. By treating the domestic and public spheres of social life as "ecological niches" that men have been forced to compete within or to avoid as best they can, we generate a typology of four "social modes" of human male behavior. We then attempt to explain the broad distribution of social modes within and between human groups based on the relative intensity of (...) scramble and contest competition. (shrink)
Several hypotheses on the form and function of sex differences in social behaviors were tested. The results suggest that friendship preferences in both sexes can be understood in terms of perceived reciprocity potential—capacity and willingness to engage in a mutually beneficial relationship. Divergent social styles may in turn reflect trade-offs between behaviors selected to maintain large, functional coalitions in men and intimate, secure relationships in women. The findings are interpreted from a broad socio-relational framework of the types of (...) behaviors that facilitate selective advertisement and investment of reciprocity potential across individuals and within groups of men and women. (shrink)
General health conditions are related to a great number of factors, including the socio-historical ones. As human beings are part of the social field, personality is also affected by them. Due to this, the main Ethics Codes of psychology, all around the world, remark in their preambles the importance of social responsibility in the practice and training in psychology. Argentina is confronted with several social problems that have severely influenced people’s mental health. In countries like Argentina, (...) the ethical practice of psychology should respect what is explicitly stated in ethic codes about psychologists’ social responsibility, and psychologists should get more involved in promoting this issue in educational training and in national health policies. (shrink)
Mechanisms in a theory are defined here as bits of theory about entities at a different level (e.g., individuals) than the main entities being theorized about (e.g., groups), which serve to make the higher-level theory more supple, more accurate, or more general. The criterion for whether it is worthwhile to theorize at lower levels is whether it makes the theory at the higher levels better, not whether lower-level theorizing is philosophically necessary. The higher-level theory can be made better by mechanisms (...) known to be inadequate in the discipline dealing with the lower level. Conditions for the usefulness of lower-level theorizing are proposed, with many examples from various social and physical sciences. (shrink)
Beran et al. (2012) reported that capuchin monkeys closely matched the performance of humans in a quantity judgment test in which information was incomplete but a judgment still had to be made. In each test session, subjects first made quantity judgments between two known options. Then, they made choices where only one option was visible. Both humans and capuchin monkeys were guided by past outcomes, as they shifted from selecting a known option to selecting an unknown option at the point (...) at which the known option went from being more than the average rate of return to less than the average rate of return from earlier choices in the test session. Here, we expanded this assessment of what guides quantity judgment choice behavior in the face of incomplete information to include manipulations to the unselected quantity. We manipulated the unchosen set in two ways: first, we showed the monkeys what they did not get (the unchosen set), anticipating that “losses” would weigh heavily on subsequent trials in which the same known quantity was presented. Second, we sometimes gave the unchosen set to another monkey, anticipating that this social manipulation might influence the risk-taking responses of the focal monkey when faced with incomplete information. However, neither manipulation caused difficulty for the monkeys who instead continued to use the rational strategy of choosing known sets when they were as large as or larger than the average rate of return in the session, and choosing the unknown (riskier) set when the known set was not sufficiently large. As in past experiments, this was true across a variety of daily ranges of quantities, indicating that monkeys were not using some absolute quantity as a threshold for selecting (or not) the known set, but instead continued to use the daily average rate of return to determine when to choose the known versus the unknown quantity. (shrink)
Pragmatist reinterpretations of both deliberative-communicative theory and legal positivism point out the mentalist fallacy entailed by these prevalent models. I argue that pragmatist approaches imply analogous erroneous beliefs since they presuppose as given the shared perception of social contexts. Therefore they take for granted the shared interpretation of social problems and shared selection of common goals. Hence I advance the necessity of inquiring into the possibility conditions for a shared perception of social contexts. This would entail (...) the organization of institutional incentives meant to extend the scope and inclusiveness of the immediate perception of social context expressed by different agents. (shrink)
This paper's purpose is to set forth the conditions of explanation in the domain of formal modelling of social action. Explanation is defined as an adequate account of the underlying factors bringing about a phenomenon. The modelling of a social phenomenon can claim explanatory value in this sense if the following two conditions are fulfilled. (1) The generative mechanisms involved translate the effects of real factors abstracted from their phenomenal context, not those of purely ideal ones. (...) (2) The explanatory hypotheses, which account for the effects of explanatory factors, and the purely descriptive hypotheses, which introduce conceptual simplifications and summarise complex secondary mechanisms, are relatively independent from each other with regard to the phenomenon represented. This condition subjects the model to testing by alternatives through the development of purely descriptive hypotheses in the sense of explanatory or analytical realism. (shrink)
In this paper, we explore Cassirer’s view of social contract theory. We maintain that Cassirer has established a linguistic turn of social contract theory, by exploring the conditions for the possibility of a promise. For that purpose Cassirer’s theory of the linguistic sign, as inspired by the linguistic theory of Wilhelm von Humboldt, becomes decisive, because of its specific nature and direction into the future. First, in Section 1, we explore previous social contract theorists, from Nicholas (...) von Cusa to Immanuel Kant. In Section 1, as a result, we establish the concept of the promise as the core concept of social contract theory, and as the fundamental philosophical problem conveyed by the natural lawyers. Moreover, in Section 2, we investigate the conditions for the possibility of a promise, and relate it to the symbolic nature of the human being. The promise, hence the capacity to enter into a contract, becomes a characteristically human activity, hence an expression of human dignity. (shrink)
Recent evidence suggests that the ratio of the lengths of the second and fourth fingers (2D:4D) may reflect degree of prenatal androgen exposure in humans. In the present study, we tested the hypotheses that 2D:4D would be associated with ratings of men’s attractiveness and with levels of behavioral displays during social interactions with potential mates. Our results confirm that male 2D:4D was significantly negatively correlated with women’s ratings of men’s physical attractiveness and levels of courtship-like behavior during a brief (...) conversation. These findings provide novel evidence for the organizational effects of hormones on human male attractiveness and social behavior. (shrink)
This article integrates theory and concepts from the business and society, business ethics, and labor relations literatures to offer a conceptualization of labor union social responsibility that includes activities geared toward three primary objectives: economic equity, workplace democracy, and social justice. Economic, workplace, and social labor union stakeholders are identified, likely issues are highlighted, and the implications of labor union social responsibility for labor union strategy are discussed. It is noted that, given the breadth of labor (...) unions in a global work environment, labor union social responsibility also has implications for NGOs, corporations, and how corporate social responsibility is viewed going forward. This article concludes by noting that the nexus of labor relations and corporate social responsibility warrants more attention in management and labor relations literatures. (shrink)
The moral justification of Will Kymlicka's theory of minority rights is unconvincing. According to Kymlicka, cultural embeddedness is a necessary condition for personal autonomy (which is, in turn, the precondition for the good life) and for that reason liberals should be concerned about culture. I will criticize this instrumentalism of social attachments and the moral monism behind it. On the basis of a modification of Axel Honneth's theory of recognition, I will reject the false opposition between the instrumental value (...) and the intrinsic value of culture. Honneth makes a distinction between three types of recognition: (1) love; (2) respect; and (3) social esteem. Recognition of cultural difference is situated in the third sphere. But the logic of a recognition of cultural difference also demands a non-evaluative recognition, a respect for difference. Difference-respect cannot be reduced to the recognition of personal autonomy or to the recognition of a culture as such. Difference-respect is concerned with a formal recognition of difference, namely the recognition of a culture's intrinsic value for the other. By recognizing the moral importance both of personal autonomy and of social attachments, we do not have to surrender to the reductive bent in modern moral philosophy. 1 Key Words: Axel Honneth identity instrumentalism intrinsic value of culture moral justification multiculturalism recognition value pluralism Will Kymlicka. (shrink)
: Judith Butler's Kritik der ethischen Gewalt represents a significant refinement of her position on the relationship between the construction of the subject and her social subjection. While Butler's earlier texts reflect a somewhat restricted notion of agency, her Adorno Lectures formulate a notion of agency that extends beyond mere resistance. This essay traces the development of Butler's account of agency and evaluates it in light of feminist projects of social transformation.
In this paper we analyse how risk factors in highly industrialised agriculture are connected to animal neglect. With Danish agriculture as a case study, we use two types of data. First, we use register data from Statistics Denmark to map how risk factors such as farmers’ financial and social troubles are connected to convictions of neglect. Second, we analyse narratives where interviewed farmers, involved in cases of neglect, describe how they themselves experienced the incidents. We find that while livestock (...) farmers in general have a low risk of animal neglect problems, a small percentage of them face severe financial difficulties, divorce and psychiatric problems, which are connected to an increased risk of being convicted for the neglect of farm animals. The narratives bring forward themes of pressure related to financial trouble, technological break down, family problems, stress and a growing concern among the farmers towards the governmental control in farm animal production. We discuss how these factors can be used to identify and help farmers with a high risk of being convicted of livestock neglect. (shrink)
Judith Butler's Kritik der ethischen Gewalt represents a significant refinement of her position on the relationship between the construction of the subject and her social subjection. While Butler's earlier texts reflect a somewhat restricted notion of agency, her Adorno Lectures formulate a notion of agency that extends beyond mere resistance. This essay traces the development of Butler's account of agency and evaluates it in light of feminist projects of social transformation.
Radical innovations and practices frequentlyfind themselves in an inhospitable environment,struggling against the gravitational force ofdominant norms, practices and relations. Thispaper explores the problems radical changeconfronts in its attempts to become sustainable.Against the postmodern valorisation of thetransient and ephemeral, the paper argues forthe importance of routinisation and repetitionin the process of creating and sustainingchange. A metaphor of social pathways isdeveloped to explore how new routines arecreated through de jure (governance) andde facto (usage) means. The paper arguesthat, in contrast to governance, (...) the emergentdurability generated by usage enables routinesto outlive their conditions of existence.At the same time, routines at odds with theirsocial and institutional environment tend overtime to disappear. The second half of the paperdraws on four British attempts to introduce newpathways: lesbian and gay local governmentinitiatives, Conservative education reforms,Greenham Common Women's Peace Camp and LocalExchange Trading Systems (LETS). Through theseexamples, the paper reflects on attempts tocreate more conducive environments, and some ofthe difficulties this generates. (shrink)
The last five years have witnessed the birth of a vibrant new group of young scholars who are writing about queer law, politics, and policy--topics which are no longer treated as of interest only to lesbians and gay men, but which now garner the attention of political theorists of all stripes. Playing With Fire --the first scholarly collection on queer politics by US political theorists--opens the intersection of lesbian and gay studies and political theory to a wide audience. It covers (...) a wide range of issues, including: the theory of queer identities; the contrasts among ethnic, racial, and sexual identities; the debate between liberals and communitarians; the right to privacy; and the meaning of equal citizenship. Contributors: Gordon Babst, Lisa Bower, Cynthia Burack, Judith Butler, Paisley Currah, Morris Kaplan, Gary Lehring, Shane Phelan, Anne Marie Smith, Angelia Wilson, and Stacey Young. (shrink)
Abstract: This essay explores recent trends and major issues related to gay and lesbian philosophy in ethics (including issues concerning the morality of homosexuality, the natural function of sex, and outing and coming out); religion (covering past and present debates about the status of homosexuality and how biblical and qur'anic passages have been interpreted by both sides of the debate); the law (especially a discussion of the debates surrounding sodomy laws, same-sex marriage and its impact on transsexuals, and whether the (...) law should be used to enforce morality); scientific research into the origins of homosexuality (including discussion of arguments against such research); and metaphysics (especially the question of whether homosexuality is socially constructed during particular times and in particular cultures, or whether sexual orientation is an essential trait cutting across times and cultures). (shrink)
This book, first published in 1969 and now made available in paperback with a new foreword by the author, is widely regarded as one of the best studies of Rousseau's thought in any language. In it, Professor Shklar examines Rousseau's central concern: given that modern civilisation is intolerable and a return to the state of nature impossible, how is man to arrange his existence in society? Mrs Shklar emphasises the importance for Rousseau of psychological factors, and shows how, when mediated (...) through his images of authority and use of metaphor, they bring him to his notorious view that man is 'everywhere in chains'. In Mrs Shklar's view, Rousseau's final conclusion is almost equally pessimistic: the chances are very remote that we can overcome the psychological obstacles to become both men and citizens. (shrink)
In this paper, we model a relational notion of subjectivity by means of two experiments in subjective computing. The goal is to determine to what extent a cognitive and social robot can be regarded to act subjectively. The system was implemented as a reinforcement learning agent with a coaching function. To analyze the robotic agent we used the method of levels of abstraction in order to analyze the agent at four levels of abstraction. At one level the agent is (...) described in mentalistic or subjective language respectively. By mapping this mentalistic to an algorithmic, functional, and relational level, we can show to what extent the agent behaves subjectively as we make use of a relational concept of subjectivity that draws upon the relations that hold between the agent and its environment. According to a relational notion of subjectivity, an agent is supposed to be subjective if it exhibits autonomous relations to itself and others, i.e. the agent is not fully determined by a given input but is able to operate on its input and decide what to do with it. This theoretical notion is confirmed by the technical implementation of self-referentiality and social interaction in that the agent shows improved behavior compared to agents without the ability of subjective computing. On the one hand, a relational concept of subjectivity is confirmed, whereas on the other hand, the technical framework of subjective computing is being theoretically founded. (shrink)
An important and original new contribution to lesbian and gay studies, We Are Everywhere brings together the key primary sources relating to the politics of homosexuality. Presenting political, historical, legal, literary, and psychological documents which trace the evolution of the lesbian and gay movement, it includes documents as diverse as organization pamphlets, essays, polemics, speeches, newspaper and journal articles, and academic papers. We Are Everywhere includes writings from the beginnings of the gay and lesbian movement in the 19th century by (...) Karl Ulrichs, Magnus Hirschfeld, and John Addington Symonds; legal and government studies concerning rights of gay and lesbian citizens; articles from the early US liberation movement publications such as Mattachine Review , The Ladder and ONE ; documents from the first days of the AIDS epidemic to current activism; statements and writings from the movements within "the movement" (bisexuals, S/M, conservatives); and finally, a look at the future of lesbian and gay politics. Together the documents allow readers to examine a diverse set of issues: the concept of gay love before "homosexuality," the development of political movements based on homosexual identity, the history of government persecution of homosexuality, the impact of feminism on the modern lesbian and gay rights movement, and the emergence of queer theory. (shrink)
The death of Frantz Fanon at the age of thirty-six robbed the African revolution of its leading intellectual and moral force. His death also cut short one of the most extraordinary intellectual careers in contemporary political thought. Fanon was a political psychologist whose approach to revolutionary theory was grounded in his psychiatric practice. During his years in Algeria he published clinical studies on the behaviour of violent patients, the role of culture in the development of illness and the function of (...) the psychiatric hospital as a social milieu. These papers illuminate Fanon's political theory, expose weaknesses in his concept of political consciousness and liberation, and contain a 'secret history' explaining the tide of revolutionary movements in the Third World. (shrink)
A sequence of theoretical models is constructed as an extension to Leszek Nowak's theory of socialist society to explain important characteristics of the violent party purges in Soviet Stalinism. According to these models, purges are a regular and systemic feature of a socialist system during a certain phase of development (modelled as the phase of social enslavement). Contrary to traditional conceptions which interpret the purges essentially as resulting from the actions of an almost omnipotent, and partly irrational, despot, the (...) models presented here provide an explanation which does not need to conceive Stalin as the architect of terror (Robert Conquest), i.e. as the long-term planner of the terror. However, the concepts presented here preserve the vital arguments of the traditional approach, thereby contradicting the revisionist pattern of interpretation. In particular the models seek to provide a theoretical base for an explanation of the moderation of inner-party terror from 1938. This moderation is interpreted as resulting from a modification of the then existing ideology (and corresponding habits of the party's leadership); a modification which in itself had been stimulated by the disastrous effects of the great purge in 1937/38. This modification can be theoretically conceived as a process of ideological learning. The historical fact that the post-war purges (i.e. the Leningrad affair in 1949 and the Mingrelian affair 1951/52) did not reach such an enormous extent as the purges of the late 1930s may thus be attributed to a process of ideological learning. (shrink)
We applaud the authors' basic message. We note that the negative research emphasis is not special solely to social psychology and judgment and decision-making. We argue that the proposed integration of null hypothesis significance testing (NHST) and Bayesian analysis is promising but will ultimately succeed only if more attention is paid to proper experimental design and implementation.
Four aspects of Mazur & Booth's target article are discussed from a comparative perspective using teleost fish as a reference: (a) the relationship between aggression, dominance, and androgens; (b) the interpretation of the data in light of the challenge hypothesis; (c) the potential role of testosterone as a physiological mediator between social status and the expression of male characters; and (d) the fact that metabolic conversions of testosterone may be important in its effect on aggression/ dominance.
This volume explores the relationship between experience and theory in Indian social sciences in the form of a dialogue. It focuses on questions of Dalit experience and untouchability. While Gopal Guru argues that only those who have lived lives as subalterns can represent them accurately, Sundar Sarukkai feels that people located outside the community can also represent them. Thematically divided into five sections, the first discusses the problems associated with theory in the social sciences in the Indian context. (...) The next makes inquiries into the nature of personal and collective experience. The third explores the larger connection between ethics and theory in India, both in the natural and social sciences. The fourth examines the ontological and epistemological nature of experience itself and the politics of experience, and the last focuses on the experience and theory of experience in India. The authors invoke the image of a cracked mirror to suggest a more complex and distorted relation between experience and theory. This book will interest scholars, researchers, and students of Dalit studies, subaltern studies, and politics. (shrink)
Fags, Hags and Queer Sisters is a provocative account of the importance of women and cross-gender identification in "gay" male culture. It offers a range of cultural readings from Tennessee William's classic A Streetcar Named Desire and Forster's 'gay' novel Maurice through Pulp Fiction , queer lifestyle magazines, Roseanne , slash fan fiction, and Jarman's Edward II to Almodovar's camp classic Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown. Theoretically sophisticated, yet passionate, accessible and opinionated, Fags, Hags and Queer Sisters (...) takes issue with many of the sacred cows of contemporary gay politics, and offers a number of new concepts in lesbian and gay theory. (shrink)
Feminist Social Thought brings together key articles by prominent feminist thinkers, offering students sophisticated treatment of the theoretical topics central to feminist social thought. This reader highlights salient concerns in contemporary feminist scholarship and the advances feminist philosophers have made. The editor's introduction outlines alternative routes through the text, allowing instructors to easily adapt this reader to their particular courses and the interests of their students. Each article is prefaced with a short introduction by the editor placing it (...) in context, highlighting the principle issues and the conclusions reached. Students will find these headnotes helpful when tackling the challenging theoretical issues addressed. Representing a spectrum of feminist thinking, Feminist Social Thought is organized around seven topics constructions of gender; theorizing diversity; figurations of women; subjectivity, agency and feminist critique; social identity, solidarity and political engagement; care and its critics; and women, equality and justice. Students will be exposed to a wide variety of feminist philosophy and encouraged to think critically about challenging questions around pivotal subjects including * How are gender norms instilled, enforced, and perpetuated? * What are the relationships between gender and other socially demarcated positions such as race, class and sexual orientation? * What resources do women have at their disposal for recognizing their subordination and resisting it? * What goals should feminist politics pursue? * How can social and legal equality be reconciled with difference? (shrink)