A Philosophical Investigation of Rape (Routledge Research in by Louise Du Toit PDF

By Louise Du Toit

ISBN-10: 0415990297

ISBN-13: 9780415990295

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Du Toit examines the phenomenon of rape utilizing a feminist philosophical discourse pertaining to women’s subjectivity and selfhood. The e-book presents a critique of the dominant realizing of rape and its linked harm, and indicates alternatives.

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Mutual caring and meaningful specificity, embedded in a meaningful overarching or shared history, provided by homeplace, enables the development of a sense of self-worth and humanity. But then home must constitute a place-time for the being and becoming of each sex, where the inhabitants of the home ‘bring’ or ‘make’ themselves and each other (at) home. Homeplace can be the site for a self-conscious constructed identity as a political project of criticism and transformation of unjust institutions and practices, but only if we take Young’s point to heart, namely that home should be understood as a verb, as an ongoing, creative and critical activity and labour.

Two aspects of this mandate can be criticised from women’s point of view. 20 A Philosophical Investigation of Rape 1. Historically and traditionally, women have been excluded within the South African context from defi nitions of the political through highly patriarchal cultures and social institutions. Therefore, the qualification of ‘politically motivated’, applied uncritically, may prejudice against the inclusion of women’s suffering by for example, the presupposition that women’s lives and bodies belong to the private rather than the political realm.

For Irigaray (1996: 4–5), women’s homelessness and lack of subjectivity are mainly the result of a lack of mediation (distancing and objectification) of their desires and fears within the dominant symbolic order. Such mediation and objectification would allow women to do the ‘labour of the negative’ and thus to gain distance on those fears and desires. Its lack is due to women having no mirror for their own humanity and becoming. ‘Immediacy is their [women’s] traditional task’, according to Irigaray, so that what women need most is not to have their immediate desires fulfi lled, but rather to have them mediated and represented in the symbolic order.

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A Philosophical Investigation of Rape (Routledge Research in Gender and Society) by Louise Du Toit

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