07 - GWS 10 Fall 07(Chen Lecture Notes Order of...

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GWS 10 Fall 07 (Chen) Lecture Notes 10/24/07
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Order of events [Cockatoo] Presentations Roots of definitions of “freedom”: Liberalism War and Militarism/Militarization Fashion Resistance to Militarism (film)
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Cockatoo!
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Liberalism A political philosophy ideally egalitarian = extending “equality to all”, whereby Individual liberty = rights and freedoms in exchange for pledge of allegiance to the State (the abstract formation discussed last time) Rational subject (inheritance of Enlightenment rationalism – ideas of self-governance) Democratic Constitution – all men are created equal.
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Liberalism, cont’d But there were problems: 1. Individual liberty = rights and freedoms in exchange for pledge of allegiance to the State (the abstract formation discussed last time) In classical liberalism, these rights and freedoms were/are intimately connected/extended to private property holders. In other words, it is the fact that I have my own capital, that guarantees my liberty - my right to live my life as I see fit.
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In classical liberalism, it’s my private property in a free market economy that protects me from over-control by the government. “The government represented only those men who had sufficient property to make them independent ; government was supposed to be for and by the propertied.”
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Liberalism, cont’d But women could either not own property/land or could own very little property/land - by the contract of marriage and the normative structure of the family, they were effectively private property. Women were further relegated to the domain of the “private”, whereas men could manage the domain of the “public”, which included government. “Women’s work”, including reproductive work, was elided by its containment into the realm of the private, and thus was not counted as work. -> Socialist feminism.
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Interlude: Back to the “state”: All states rely on women’s unpaid domestic and reproductive labor; classical and even contemporary liberalism reproduces this idea. “No state could seriously attempt equality in work, or to pay fairly for women’s work, without profound transformation of all social and power relations.”
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Interlude: Back to the “state” Remember that a state is not just reducible to its laws. It is the combination of all sorts of institutions, laws, and practices of those laws and institutions.
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