Combining the liberalism of Locke and the "civic humanism" of Republicanism, Mary Wollstonecraft explored the need of women for coed and equal education with men, economic independence whether married or not, and representation as citizens in the halls of government. In doing so, she foreshadowed and surpassed her much better known successor, John Stuart Mill. Ten feminist scholars prominent in the fields of political philosophy, constitutional and international law, rhetoric, literature, and psychology argue here that Wollstonecraft, by reason of the (...) scope and complexity of her thought, belongs in the "canon" of political philosophers along with Rousseau and Burke, her contemporaries, both of whom she strenuously engaged in political debate. These essays explore the many aspects of her thought that resound so tellingly to the modern woman, including her groundbreaking attempt to be completely self-sufficient. The final bibliographical essay outlines the changing interpretations of Wollstonecraft's work over the past two hundred years and evaluates her standing among political theorists today. Contributors are Maria J. Falco, Penny A. Weiss, Virginia Sapiro, Virginia L. Muller, Wendy Gunther-Canada, Carol H. Poston, Miriam Brody, Moira Ferguson, Louise Byer Miller, and Dorothy McBride Stetson. (shrink)
There are differences between human beings, and some of these differences are, for many, a matter of identity. Some people are men, and some are white. Some people are poor, others are wealthy. These identity-constituting differences are deeply connected with different kinds of injustices. Susan Hekman's main contention in The Future of Differences is that a new epistemology is required if we are to acknowledge all these differences and, consequently, address these injustices.
This essay introduces the term arbitrary cause as a precise description of the contingent structural relationship of figurative language to social reality. At the present time our critical vocabulary lacks a term that characterizes that relationship. The aim of the present essay is to establish the importance of the notion of arbitrary cause in understanding the process of figurative representation. The essay examines Saussurean linguistics, structuralist and poststructuralist revisions of Saussure, and provides a detailed set of examples demonstrating the instability (...) of the concept of the arbitrary in common usage. The essay concludes with a discussion of literary expression. (shrink)
Drawing on the work of Max Weber, Edward Shils, Charles Camic and Thomas Spence Smith, among others, this article analyzes the effect of the breakdown of charismatic groups on tragic protagonists. Because criticism has usually focused on the isolation of tragic figures, little attention has been paid to group formation and group dissolution as significant components of tragedy. Yet group function makes a manifest contribution to tragic denouement: the vicissitudes of charismatic authority not only reflect but often bring about the (...) catastrophes in tragic drama. The article demonstrates this thesis in a concluding discussion of Shakespeare's Othello. (shrink)
Diplomat, bureaucrat, and practical politician, Niccolò Machiavelli served as Second Secretary to the Republic of Florence in the early sixteenth century and became the first major political thinker in the western tradition to make a complete break with the Aristotelian model of politics as a branch of ethics. While _The Prince _is his most famous work, grounding his reputation as the progenitor of "Realpolitik," his many other writings have contributed to a more complex and broader image of the man and (...) his political thought. Thus in recent years Machiavelli has come to be seen as a republican and a proto-liberal by some mainstream political theorists, and as an obfuscator of traditional values and ideologies, including gender roles, by feminists and non-feminists alike. The contributors to this volume, grappling with questions about the position of women in political society, investigate whether or not Machiavelli was truly a misogynist and a proto-fascist or instead a proto-feminist and a democratic republican. Among the themes they explore are the implications of such dichotomies as _Fortuna_ and _virtù_, the public and the private, nature and reason, ends and means, functionality and the common good, as well as the importance of the military to the socialization of citizens, particularly women, to civic life, and the social construction of gender. Some of the contributors even consider the possibility that Machiavelli's approach to ethics provides a special insight that feminists, and women generally, might explore to their benefit. Besides the editor, the contributors are Wendy Brown, Jane Jaquette, Donald McIntosh, Melissa Matthes, Vesna Marcina, Martin Morris, Cary Nederman, Andrea Nicki, Mary O'Brien, Hanna Pitkin, Arlene Saxonhouse, John Shin, R. Claire Snyder, and Catherine Zuckert. (shrink)
One problem facing Hockney and Falco is the lack of evidence among optical sources to support their claim that artists used image-projection by the early 1400s. After all, if quattrocento artists knew about image-projection, they must have learned about it from experts in the field, and no one was more expert at the time than Perspectivist opticians. As I argue in this paper, however, Perspectivist reflection-analysis posed certain theoretical and conceptual constraints that would have prevented Perspectivist opticians from recognizing, (...) much less understanding, image-projection. Their silence on this matter is therefore not evidence against the Hockney-Falco thesis. (shrink)
Darko Suvin’s Metamorphoses of Science Fiction, first published by Yale University Press in 1979, has been the single most influential work in the history of academic science-fiction studies. As Veronica Hollinger observed: “Metamorphoses is the significant forerunner of all the major examinations of the genre”. Mark Bould and Sherryl Vint make more or less the same point: “Disagreeing with him [Suvin] is a considerable part of SF scholarship—he... set... the terms by which SF has subsequently been studied”. Perhaps not quite (...) so significant for utopian studies, Metamorphoses was nonetheless a crucially important text here too. For the fundamental novelty of its argument lies in the... (shrink)