Capitalism and the Conflict over Universality

Philosophy Today 61 (4):847-861 (2017)

Cinzia Arruzza
New School for Social Research
In this paper I adopt Étienne Balibar’s distinction between three forms of universality—“universality as reality,” “fictive universality,” and “ideal universality”—in order to retrieve universalism for feminist politics. The paper articulates a proposal for the feminist adoption of a specific notion of universality, which I call political insurgent universality. This notion is not based on a definition of human essence or of women's nature. It is rather rooted in the “real universality” historically created by capitalism, that is, in the fact that capitalism has generated a world in which people are interdependent and in which capitalist accumulation poses objective universal constraints on social reproduction.
Keywords Catholic Tradition  Contemporary Philosophy  Continental Philosophy
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ISBN(s) 0031-8256
DOI 10.5840/philtoday20171212184
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