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Profile: Leslie A. Howe (University of Saskatchewan)
  1. Leslie A. Howe (2012). Different Kinds of Perfect: The Pursuit of Excellence in Nature-Based Sports. Sport, Ethics and Philosophy 6 (3):353-368.
    Excellence in sport performance is normally taken to be a matter of superior performance of physical movements or quantitative outcomes of movements. This paper considers whether a wider conception can be afforded by certain kinds of nature based sport. The interplay between technical skill and aesthetic experience in nature based sports is explored, and the extent to which it contributes to a distinction between different sport-based approaches to natural environments. The potential for aesthetic appreciation of environmental engagement is found to (...)
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  2. Leslie A. Howe (2011). Convention, Audience, and Narrative: Which Play is the Thing? Journal of the Philosophy of Sport 38 (2):135-148.
    This paper argues against the conception of sport as theatre. Theatre and sport share the characteristic that play is set in a conventionally-defined hypothetical reality, but they differ fundamentally in the relative importance of audience and the narrative point of view. Both present potential for participants for development of selfhood through play and its personal possibilities. But sport is not essentially tied to audience as is theatre. Moreover, conceptualising sport as a form of theatre valorises the spectator’s narrative as normative (...)
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  3. Leslie A. Howe (2008). On Competing Against Oneself, or 'I Need to Get a Different Voice in My Head'. Sport, Ethics and Philosophy 2 (3):353 – 366.
    In a recent paper, Kevin Krein argues that the notion of self-competition is misplaced in adventure sports and of only limited application altogether, for two main reasons: (i) the need for a consistent and repeatable measure of performance; and (ii) the requirement of multiple competitors. Moreover, where an individual is engaged in a sport in which the primary feature with which they are engaged is a natural one, Krein argues that the more accurate description of their activity is not 'competition', (...)
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  4. Leslie A. Howe (2008). Remote Sport: Risk and Self-Knowledge in Wilder Spaces. Journal of the Philosophy of Sport 35 (1):1-16.
    Previous discussions on the value of sport in remote locations have concentrated on 1) environmental and process concerns, with the rejection of competition and goal-directed or use oriented activity, or 2) the value of risk and dangerous sport for self-affirmation. It is argued that the value of risk in remote sport is in self-knowledge rather than self-affirmation and that risk in remote sport, while enhancing certain kinds of experience, is not necessary. The value of remote sport is in offering the (...)
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  5. Leslie A. Howe (2008). Self and Pretence: Playing with Identity. Journal of Social Philosophy 39 (4):564-582.
    This paper considers the importance of play as a conventional space for hypothetical self-expression and self-trial, its importance for determination of identity, and for development of self-possibilities. Expanding such possibilities in play enables challenging of socially entrenched assumptions concerning possible and appropriate identities. Discussion is extended to the contexts of gender performance (drag) and sport-play. It is argued that play proceeds on the basis of a fundamental pretence of reality that must be taken seriously by its participants; this discussion includes (...)
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  6. Leslie A. Howe (2007). Being and Playing: Sport and the Valorisation of Gender. In William J. Morgan (ed.), Ethics in Sport. Human Kinetics, Inc. 331.
    Sport acts as a vehicle for the social realization of certain traditional normative frameworks of gender construction and interpretation. Women participating in traditionally male defined sports challenge those frameworks and open the possibility of a redefinition of women’s gender identity, while also raising practical questions concerning women’s control over the means and direction of that redefinition. This paper traces, in both general and personal terms, several of the issues faced by women in “male” sports, especially hockey. These include the problems (...)
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  7. Leslie A. Howe (2007). Play, Performance, and the Docile Athlete. Sport, Ethics and Philosophy 1 (1):47 – 57.
    I respond to a hypothetical critique of sport, drawing on primarily post-modernist sources, that would view the high performance athlete in particular as a product of the application of technical disciplines of power and that opposes sport and play as fundamentally antithetical. Through extensive discussion of possible definitions of play, and of performance, I argue that although much of the critique is valid it confuses a method of sport for the whole of it. Play is indeed a noncompellable spontaneity, but (...)
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  8. Leslie A. Howe (2007). Vicarious Pain and Genuine Pleasure: Some Reflections on Spectator Transformation of Meaning in Sport. In Heather Sheridan Leslie A. Howe & Keith Thompson (eds.), Sporting Reflections: Some Philosophical Perspectives. Meyer & Meyer Sport.
    Ambiguity in the athlete’s perception and description of pain that opens the door to a series of reinterpretations of athletic experience and events that argue the development of an increasingly inauthentic relation to self and others on the part of those who consume performance as third parties (spectators) and ultimately those who produce it first hand (athletes). The insertion of the spectator into the sport situation as a consumer of the athlete’s activity and the preference given to spectator interpretation shift (...)
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  9. Leslie A. Howe (2005). A Feminist Cosmology: Ecology, Solidarity, and Metaphysics (Review). Hypatia 20 (2):197-199.
  10. Leslie A. Howe (2005). Queer Revelations: Desire, Identity, and Self-Deceit. Philosophical Forum 36 (3):221–242.
    I argue that understanding the self in terms of narrative construction does not preclude the possibility of error concerning one’s own self. Identity is a projection of first and second-order desires and a product of choice in relation to desire. Self-deceit appears in this connection as a response to an identity that one has constructed through choice and/or desire but not acknowledged in one’s self-account, reflecting a conflict between desires or a motivated failure to account. This analysis is applied primarily (...)
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  11. Leslie A. Howe (2005). Book Review: Nancy R. Howell. A Feminist Cosmology: Ecology, Solidarity, and Metaphysics. Amherst: Humanity Books, 2000. [REVIEW] Hypatia 20 (2):197-199.
  12. Leslie A. Howe (2004). Gamesmanship. Journal of the Philosophy of Sport 31 (2):212-225.
    “What are you prepared to do to win?” This is a question that any serious competitor will at one time or another have to consider. The answer that one is inclined to make, I shall argue, is revealing of the deeper character of the individual participant in sport as both physical competitor and moral person. To that end, I examine one of the classic responses to the question, gamesmanship, which can be characterised as an attempt to win one game by (...)
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  13. Leslie A. Howe (2003). Athletics, Embodiment, and the Appropriation of the Self. Journal of Speculative Philosophy 17 (2):92-107.
    The paper argues that authentic human selfhood requires the adequate integration of bodily awareness into the self-conception of self, and that a highly significant contributor to this process is athletic activity (sports). The role of athletics in self-integration is examined from phenomenological and moral-political standpoints, and it is argued that, although athletic activity's inherent goal of realizing ontological unity through embodied intentionality is ideally suited to this task, the organization of sport too frequently thwarts this purpose, either through exclusion of (...)
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  14. Leslie A. Howe (2000). On Goldman. Wadsworth.
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  15. Leslie A. Howe (2000). On Habermas. Wadsworth.
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  16. Leslie A. Howe (1994). Kierkegaard and the Feminine Self. Hypatia 9 (4):131-157.
    Kierkegaard shows two contrary attitudes to woman and the feminine: misogyny and celebration. The Kierkegaardian structure of selfhood, because combined with a hierarchical assumption about the relative value of certain human characteristics, and their identification as male or female, argues that woman is a lesser self. Consequently, the claim that the Kierkegaardian ideal of selfhood is androgynist is rejected, though it is the latter assumptions alone that force this conclusion.
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