Valeria Ottonelli

The Disappearance of Women as Subjects and Its Political Consequences

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: MacKinnon, Female Subjectivity, Agency, Free Consent

One of the main implications of MacKinnon's approach to male domination is the denial that women can exist as subjects and can exercise genuine agency. Besides having counterintuitive epistemological and ontological implications, this view is politically dangerous, because it reinforces the cultural structures of domination, it deprives women of the performative and authorial power to reverse established social meanings and practices, and it silences women's voices and claims that could help them to cope with the non-ideal circumstances of their lives. It is argued here that these very unwelcome political consequences should count in assessing MacKinnon's theory and that much of its apparent appeal rests on the undue assumption that recognizing women's agency would legitimize the present unjust political and social order.

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