PoliticalScience471_Final - Political Science 471 Final...

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Political Science 471 Final Preparation Iris Young – Reading 1 p. 202-217 (Feminist Theorist) Perspective One She has suggested that in the 20 th century the ideal state is composed of a plurality of nations or cultural groups, with a degree of self-determination and autonomy compatible with federated equal rights and obligations of citizenship The Ideal of Impartiality and the Civic Public: In this chapter she urges proponents of contemporary emancipatory politics to break with modernism rather than recover suppressed possibilities of modern political ideals. She draws out the consequences of two strands of recent feminist responses to modern moral and political theory and weaves them together. Young argues that the theoretical and practical exclusion of women from the public sphere is a manifestation of the civic public's will to achieve unity, which leads to the exclusion of those aspects of human existence "that threaten to disperse the brotherly unity of straight and upright forms". An emancipatory conception of public life, in her view, must ensure the inclusion of all persons and groups, not by claiming a unified universality but by explicitly promoting heterogeneity in public life. Part 1: The Opposition between Reason and Affectivity Argues that an emancipatory ethics must develop a conception of normative reason that does not oppose reason to desire and affectivity. Young argues that the "logic of identity" generates dichotomy instead of unity. She notes that the move to place particulars in a universal category creates a distinction between "inside" and "outside". The dichotomy between reason and desire is reflected in modern political theory in the distinction between the "universal public" realm of the state and the "particular private" realms of needs and desires. Modern normative political theory aims to embody impartiality in the public realm. Impartiality: a point of view of reason that separates itself from interests and desires Moral decisions based on considerations of sympathy, caring, and an assessment of differentiated need are defined as not rational, not “objective” merely sentimental. Women are identified with such styles of decision making and therefore tend to be excluded from moral rationality. Part 2: The Unity of the Civic Public Seeks to connect the critique of the way modern normative reason generates opposition with feminist critiques of modern political theory, as exhibited in Rousseau and Hegel. The emancipatory conception of public life can best ensure the inclusion of all persons and groups not by claiming a unified universality, but by explicitly promoting heterogeneity in public “In modern political theory and practice, the public realm of the state achieves a unity in particular by the exclusion of women and others associated with nature and the body Civic public: institutionalized by the end of the 18 th century in Europe and the US to suppress the popular and linguistic heterogeneity of the urban public. This reordered social life on a strict division of public and private
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This note was uploaded on 12/08/2011 for the course POLI 471 taught by Professor Spinner-halev during the Fall '10 term at UNC.

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PoliticalScience471_Final - Political Science 471 Final...

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