What are economic exchanges? The received view has it that exchanges are mutual transfers of goods motivated by inverse valuations thereof. As a corollary, the standard approach treats exchanges of services as a subspecies of exchanges of goods. We raise two objections against this standard approach. First, it is incomplete, as it fails to take into account, among other things, the offers and acceptances that lie at the core of even the simplest cases of exchanges. Second, it ultimately fails to (...) generalize to exchanges of services, in which neither inverse preferences nor mutual transfers hold true. We propose an alternative definition of exchanges, which treats exchanges of goods as a special case of exchanges of services and which builds in offers and acceptances. According to this theory: (i) The valuations motivating exchanges are propositional and convergent rather than objectual and inverse; (ii) All exchanges of goods involve exchanges of services/actions, but not the reverse; (iii) Offers and acceptances, together with the contractual obligations and claims they bring about, lie at the heart of all cases of exchange. (shrink)
Among Austen commentators, the traditional view of manhood holds that it is innate, “‘a matter of course,’ a given quality of a man’s nature”. However, since the 90’s, this view has been contested, especially in Emma, with the argument that “masculinity is something the novel contests and constructs”. In “Manhood and Happiness in Emma: Liberal Learning and Practicing the Language of Marriage,” I frame Austen’s understanding of manhood in terms of education. In order to become the man he (...) ought to be, he must be teachable, he must be a liberal learner, and most important for Austen, he must develop certain Christian qualities of mind: humility, kindness, and forgiveness. This education for manhood can only take place within marriage, but not just any kind of marriage will do. To reinforce this point, I contrast two different kinds of marriage — the cornerstone versus the capstone — and I discuss the kinds of thinking that go with each. Using Mr. Weston and Frank Churchill, I argue that within a capstone marriage, the languages of materialism and narcissism make it impossible to develop the qualities of mind necessary for manhood. With Mr. Knightley, who has the most potential for manhood in the novel, I argue that to fulfill this potential he must choose a cornerstone marriage, within which he may practice the language of marriage, thereby learning to express humility, kindness, and forgiveness. By acquiring these qualities and by learning to love the right things — truth, goodness, and beauty — in the right way, Mr. Knightley becomes the man he ought to be — not only in Emma’s eyes — but also in Austen’s. (shrink)
This article is an edited version of the response paper offered at the conclusion of the symposium, Modern Sensibilities. It ties together themes from the symposium papers, as well as ideas prompted by Mieke Bal’s exhibition, Emma & Edvard: Love in the Time of Loneliness, and her accompanying book, Emma and Edvard Looking Sideways: Loneliness and the Cinematic. It focuses on the anachronistic entanglements among Flaubert’s “Emma,” Munch’s motifs, Mieke Bal and Michelle Williams Gamaker’s Madame B, the (...) Munch Museum’s architecture and exhibition scenography, and the exhibition viewer. (shrink)
What has Emma Woodhouse to say to a discipline like philosophy? The minutia of daily living on which Jane Austen's Emma concentrates our attention permit a closer look at human emotions and motives. Emma shows how friendships can affect one's ways of dealing with the world, how shame can reconfigure self-understanding. That is, Emma leads us to think philosophically.
In _Considering Emma Goldman_ Clare Hemmings examines the significance of the anarchist activist and thinker for contemporary feminist politics. Rather than attempting to resolve the tensions and problems that Goldman's thinking about race, gender, and sexuality pose for feminist thought, Hemmings embraces them, finding them to be helpful in formulating a new queer feminist praxis. Mining three overlapping archives—Goldman's own writings, her historical and theoretical legacy, and an imaginative archive that responds creatively to gaps in those archives —Hemmings shows (...) how serious engagement with Goldman's political ambivalences opens up larger questions surrounding feminist historiography, affect, fantasy, and knowledge production. Moreover, she explores her personal affinity for Goldman to illuminate the role that affective investment plays in shaping feminist storytelling. By considering Goldman in all her contradictions and complexity, Hemmings presents a queer feminist response to the ambivalences that also saturate contemporary queer feminist race theories. (shrink)
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