Download Autonomy, Gender, Politics (Studies in Feminist Philosophy) by Marilyn Friedman PDF

By Marilyn Friedman

Ladies have traditionally been avoided from residing autonomously by means of systematic injustice, subordination, and oppression. The lingering results of those practices have triggered many feminists to view autonomy with suspicion. the following, Marilyn Friedman defends the precise of feminist autonomy. In her eyes, habit is self sustaining if it accords with the desires, cares, values, or commitments that the actor has reaffirmed and is ready to maintain within the face of competition. through her account, autonomy is socially grounded but additionally individualizing and infrequently socially disruptive, features that may be eventually helpful for girls. Friedman applies the idea that of autonomy to domain names of certain curiosity to girls. She defends the significance of autonomy in romantic love, considers how social associations may still reply to girls who decide to stay in abusive relationships, and argues that liberal societies may still tolerate minority cultural practices that violate women's rights as long as the ladies in query have selected autonomously to stay based on these practices.

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Extra info for Autonomy, Gender, Politics (Studies in Feminist Philosophy)

Sample text

To say that I am committed to my own substantive autonomy as a value would be to say that I valued my very valuing of my own activity of reflecting on my deeper concerns and acting accordingly. Such metalevel self-reflections would certainly be consistent with being autonomous. There is, however, no reason to require them, even on a substantive account. They are implausibly cumbersome as reconstructions of what people ordinarily care about. More important, they are more than is needed for someone to care explicitly about her own autonomy and make choices that accord with that concern.

Thus someone might have autonomy competency yet not be an autonomous person because she is frequently blocked from exercising that competency by obstacles over which she may have little control. For an agent’s choices and actions to reflect her deep concerns, she must be able to persist in promoting those concerns to some extent even in the face of obstacles. She must be able to resist to some minimal degree the efforts by others to obstruct or thwart her efforts to act according to her deeper con- A CONCEPTION OF AUTONOMY 19 cerns.

And the precise values that some might choose autonomously to sustain may be exactly those that provide moral goods to others. This result would constitute the best possible response to hardship, a moral triumph over tragic conditions. Incalculable value emerges, with a bittersweet irony, when someone autonomously promotes moral good in the face of tragedy. Autonomy can pull for moral good in bad times so long as people have the real choice of adhering to or forsaking what they really care about, and so long as at least some persons care deeply about real moral value to begin with.

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