Inspired by Card's focus on atrocities, I reflect on attitudes and behaviors that buttress and support evil. Surely, the frequent anti-Semitic sermons in German churches helped to form and later to support the views of both Nazis and those who accepted and cooperated with them. Similarly, lynching, rape, and abuse occur within societies whose structures and laws reflect dominant, generally "genteel" racism and sexism and, in turn, help create perpetrators and at least somewhat sympathetic onlookers.
Moving beyond the traditional feminist ethics of care, Linda A. Bell places an existentialist conception of liberation at the heart of ethics and argues that only an ethics of freedom sufficiently allows for feminist critique and opposition ...
In this provocative book, Nye argues that feminist attempts to spin coherent theories from the threads of the various philosophies of man fail as the patriarchal assumptions of each theory resist and undermine every effort. Nevertheless, she claims, although the threads cannot be woven into a coherent tapestry, as dedicated feminist Arachnes meticulously separate strand from strand, "the mechanisms of oppression are finally understood" and the patriarchal tapestries begin to unravel.
Are hierarchies necessary in human relationships? This issue is a central one for feminist theory, and there is a continuing need to rethink relationships and to envision what they might be like without any sort of dominance of some over others. To aid this process of envisioning alternatives, this paper examines more closely the way one of the most intimate of hierarchies - marriage - has been argued and envisioned historically.
InBeing and Nothingness, Jean-Paul Sartre affirms a circle of relations between oneself and another. This circle moves between the relations of love and desire and results from the fact that both love and desire are attempts to capture the other who always remains out of reach. Sartre denies that there can be a dialectic of such relations with others: never can there be a motivated movement beyond the frustrations and failures of each of these attempts to relate to the other. (...) The only way out of this circle is, therefore, according to Sartre, a radical conversion.Like the master in Hegel'sPhenomenology of Mind, each individual caught in this circle wants what cannot be attained: the assimilation or the negation of the freedom of the other. He is thus, like Hegel's master, impervious to any reasons that could count against what he is seeking; his failures cannot in any way motivate him to want what can be. From the point of view of such desires, any negative evaluation of these desires must seem arbitrary. Therefore, to the extent that Sartre's earlier writings indicate no other possibilities of human existence except those premised on such impossible demands, Sartre's negative evaluations concerning the bad faith of these individuals must seem arbitrary.My conclusion is not, however, simply negative since I argue that inSaint Genet Sartre presents Genet's life as a dialectical movement beyond failure to triumph. This is not a dialectic of bad faith. Rather it is a dialectic based on a very different desire from the desire for what cannot be. If Sartre thus develops another level, another fundamental desire, from which the level of bad faith can be judged to be wrong, then at least from this level the judgment is not a merely arbitrary one. (shrink)