Feminism, Foucault, and Embodied Subjectivity

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SUNY Press, Oct 10, 2002 - Philosophy - 230 pages
Addressing central questions in the debate about Foucault's usefulness for politics, including his rejection of universal norms, his conception of power and power-knowledge, his seemingly contradictory position on subjectivity and his resistance to using identity as a political category, McLaren argues that Foucault employs a conception of embodied subjectivity that is well-suited for feminism. She applies Foucault's notion of practices of the self to contemporary feminist practices, such as consciousness-raising and autobiography, and concludes that the connection between self-transformation and social transformation that Foucault theorizes as the connection between subjectivity and institutional and social norms is crucial for contemporary feminist theory and politics.
 

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Contents

THE FEMINISM AND FOUCAULT DEBATE STAKES ISSUES POSITIONS
1
FOUCAULT FEMINISM AND NORMS
19
POSTMODERNISM AND POLITICS
20
FEMINIST CRITICS
23
GENEALOGY AS CRITIQUE
30
PROBLEMS WITH POWER
36
FOUCAULTS SKEPTICISM
41
FOUCAULT AND FEMINIST RESISTANCE
48
FEMINIST RESISTANCE TO THE DEPLOYMENT OF SEXUALITY
110
CONCLUSION
114
IDENTITY POLITICS SEX GENDER AND SEXUALITY
117
IDENTITY POLITICS
118
FOUCAULT ON IDENTITY
122
POSTMODERN CRITICISMS OF IDENTITY POLITICS
124
HERCULINE BARBIN AND THE SEXED BODY
127
IDENTITY AND POLITICS
135

FOUCAULT AND THE SUBJECT OF FEMINISM
53
FEMINIST CRITICS
54
FOUCAULTS CHALLENGE TO SUBJECTIVITY
56
FOUCAULTS REFUSAL
60
LIFE AS A WORK OF ART
68
THE RELATIONAL FEMINIST SUBJECT
74
CONCLUSION
79
FOUCAULT AND THE BODY A FEMINIST REAPPRAISAL
81
FOUCAULTS BODY
83
DISCIPLINARY PRACTICES AND THE FEMININE BODY
91
A FOUCAULDIAN FEMINIST CRITICISM OF FOUCAULTS BODY
99
CONCLUSION
142
PRACTICES OF THE SELF FROM SELFTRANSFORMATION TO SOCIAL TRANSFORMATION
145
FOUCAULTS TECHNOLOGIES OF THE SELF
146
SELFWRITING
148
PARRHESIATRUTH TELLING
152
CONCLUSION
162
CONCLUSION
165
NOTES
175
BIBLIOGRAPHY
209
INDEX
225
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About the author (2002)

Margaret A. McLaren is Associate Professor of Philosophy and Coordinator of Women's Studies at Rollins College.

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