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Essays on Ethics and Feminism$
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Sabina Lovibond

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780198719625

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198719625.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 21 September 2021

Feminism and Postmodernism

Feminism and Postmodernism

Chapter:
(p.18) Essay 1 Feminism and Postmodernism
Source:
Essays on Ethics and Feminism
Author(s):

Sabina Lovibond

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198719625.003.0002

The essay considers the meaning of ‘postmodernism’ in a philosophical (as distinct e.g. from artistic) context. This work of informal analysis is intended to facilitate discussion of what attitude a feminist, i.e. someone hoping to see an end to female subordination, might reasonably adopt towards ‘postmodern’ tendencies. The selected postmodern phenomena all display some negativity towards the unifying impulse (both ethical and epistemological) of Enlightenment ideology, and of the rationalist or universalist politics inspired by it. These phenomena are organized under the headings ‘dynamic pluralism’, ‘quiet pluralism’, and ‘pluralism of inclination’, focusing respectively on questions of legitimation, tradition, and the ethical status of pleasure. Under each heading, reasons are suggested why feminists should be wary of assuming that postmodernist thinking will be helpful to their cause.

Keywords:   Enlightenment, legitimation, pleasure, postmodernism, rationalism, tradition, universality

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