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Challenging Liberalism
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summary
Questions about the relevance and value of various liberal concepts are at the heart of important debates among feminist philosophers and social theorists. Although many feminists invoke concepts such as rights, equality, autonomy, and freedom in arguments for liberation, some attempt to avoid them, noting that they can also reinforce and perpetuate oppressive social structures. In Challenging Liberalism Schwartzman explores the reasons why concepts such as rights and equality can sometimes reinforce oppression. She argues that certain forms of abstraction and individualism are central to liberal methodology and that these give rise to a number of problems. Drawing on the work of feminist moral, political, and legal theorists, she constructs an approach that employs these concepts, while viewing them from within a critique of social relations of power.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Copyright
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  1. Contents
  2. p. v
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. vii-viii
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  1. Introduction
  2. pp. 1-12
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  1. Part I: A Feminist Critique of Liberalism
  2. pp. 13-14
  1. 1. Individualism, Oppression, and Liberal Rights Theory
  2. pp. 15-36
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  1. 2. Abstract Ideals and Social Inequality: Dworkin's Equality of Resources
  2. pp. 37-54
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  1. 3. Rawlsian Abstraction and the Social Position of Women
  2. pp. 55-74
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  1. Part II: Abstraction, Ideals, and Feminist Methodologies
  2. pp. 75-76
  1. 4. Idealization, Abstraction, and the Use of Ideals in Feminist Critique
  2. pp. 77-94
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  1. 5. Feminism as an Alternative Methodology
  2. pp. 95-110
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  1. Part III: Feminist Postmodernism: An Alternative to Liberalism?
  2. pp. 111-112
  1. 6. Politicized Identity, Women's Experience, and the Law
  2. pp. 113-132
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  1. 7. Speech, Authority, and Social Context
  2. pp. 133-158
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  1. Conclusion: Toward a Feminist Approach to Political Theorizing
  2. pp. 159-174
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  1. Notes
  2. pp. 175-194
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  1. Bibliography
  2. pp. 195-204
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 205-210
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  1. Back Cover
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