Matías Murtagh
Pontificia Universidad Católica del Ecuador
A metaphysical strand of C. S. Peirce’s American pragmatism resonates deeply in potential alliance with “incorporeal feminism”: a transcontinental philosophy with origins in Luce Irigaray’s ethics of sexual difference. A psychoanalyst trained by Lacan himself, Irigaray analyzes the unconscious of various philosophical systems, revealing dualism as an underlying phallic structure. In the dualism between idealism and materialism, she explains, the terms become sexually coded: idealism, paternal-masculine; materialism, maternal-feminine. Incorporeal feminism does not merely invert the roles, but radically reimagines the relation between them, postulating the ideal as a maternal condition of possibility for birthing the material into existence; not separate substances but the inseparable activity of materiality making itself. For Peirce, ideas act; and though he was by no means a feminist, his metaphysics lend at least three insights to incorporeal feminism: an alternative to dualism in the trichotomic categories “firstness, secondness, and thirdness”; an evolutionary cosmology where the material universe is a gestating embryo within a womb; and an objective idealism: a model for addressing the dilemma of when sexual difference begins. Within “firstness,” sexual difference is ideal; an incorporeal activity pre-existing and latently imbuing materiality to varying degrees, ultimately expressing itself in certain life-forms as bodily differences.
Keywords Contemporary Philosophy  Continental Philosophy
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