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Feminist Second Thoughts about Free Agency

Paul Benson
Hypatia
Vol. 5, No. 3 (Autumn, 1990), pp. 47-64
Published by: Wiley on behalf of Hypatia, Inc.
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3809975
Page Count: 18
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Feminist Second Thoughts about Free Agency
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Abstract

This essay suggests that common themes in recent feminist ethical thought can dislodge the guiding assumptions of traditional theories of free agency and thereby foster an account of freedom which might be more fruitful for feminist discussion of moral and political agency. The essay proposes constructing that account around a condition of normative-competence. It argues that this view permits insight into why women's labor of reclaiming and augmenting their agency is both difficult and possible in a sexist society.

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