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Living Across and Through Skins Transactional Bodies, Pragmatism, and Feminism

by Shannon Sullivan

  • ISBN: 9780253338532
  • ISBN10: 0253338530

Living Across and Through Skins Transactional Bodies, Pragmatism, and Feminism

by Shannon Sullivan

  • List Price: $39.95
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Publisher: Indiana Univ Pr
  • Publish date: 04/01/2001
  • ISBN: 9780253338532
  • ISBN10: 0253338530
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Description: Sullivan (Pennsylvania State Univ.) constructs a pragmatic feminist theory by weaving together seemingly disparate strains of philosophical thought, including central ideas of Merleau--Ponty, Judith Butler, Sandra Harding, Lucius Outlaw, and Nietzsche, with the work of John Dewey. What survives scrutiny imbues a Deweyean pragmatism that emphasizes a dynamic, reciprocal, transformative relationship between individual members of the environment and with the environment itself, denying traditionally accepted dichotomies such as mind/body, subject/object, and nature/experience. Two ideas ground Sullivan's theory. First, human corporeality, not an abstract metaphysic, is the basis of truth, moral agency, conceptions of self, and human flourishing. Second, the improvement of individual embodied existence and the improvement of the world are mutually dependent. At times, the idea of bodies is somewhat elusive; still, Sullivan is superb at making difficult ideas in feminism and Continental philosophy seem natural partners for pragmatism. This is an important book for those interested in seeing how traditional philosophy can contribute to contemporary feminist theory. It complements Susan Bordo's Unbearable Weight: Feminism, Western Culture, and the Body (1993); Raia Prokhovnik's Rational Woman: A Feminist Critique of Dichotomy (CH, Jun'00); and Charlene Haddock Seigfried's Feminist Interpretations of John Dewey (2001). Upper--division undergraduates through faculty and researchers. --S. Martinell
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