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Gender, Class, and Freedom in Modern Political Theory
     

Gender, Class, and Freedom in Modern Political Theory

by Nancy J. Hirschmann
 

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ISBN-10: 0691129886

ISBN-13: 9780691129884

Pub. Date: 11/12/2007

Publisher: Princeton University Press

In Gender, Class, and Freedom in Modern Political Theory, Nancy Hirschmann demonstrates not merely that modern theories of freedom are susceptible to gender and class analysis but that they must be analyzed in terms of gender and class in order to be understood at all. Through rigorous close readings of major and minor works of Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, Kant,

Overview

In Gender, Class, and Freedom in Modern Political Theory, Nancy Hirschmann demonstrates not merely that modern theories of freedom are susceptible to gender and class analysis but that they must be analyzed in terms of gender and class in order to be understood at all. Through rigorous close readings of major and minor works of Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, Kant, and Mill, Hirschmann establishes and examines the gender and class foundations of the modern understanding of freedom. Building on a social constructivist model of freedom that she developed in her award-winning book The Subject of Liberty: Toward a Feminist Theory of Freedom, she makes in her new book another original and important contribution to political and feminist theory.

Despite the prominence of "state of nature" ideas in modern political theory, Hirschmann argues, theories of freedom actually advance a social constructivist understanding of humanity. By rereading "human nature" in light of this insight, Hirschmann uncovers theories of freedom that are both more historically accurate and more relevant to contemporary politics. Pigeonholing canonical theorists as proponents of either "positive" or "negative" liberty is historically inaccurate, she demonstrates, because theorists deploy both conceptions of freedom simultaneously throughout their work.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780691129884
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Publication date:
11/12/2007
Pages:
352
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.10(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

INTRODUCTION: Gender, Class, and Freedom in Modern Political Theory 1
Negative and Positive Liberty in the Western Canon 2
The Social Construction of Freedom 13
The Gender Politics of Freedom 21

CHAPTER ONE: Thomas Hobbes: Desire and Rationality 29
The Will to Freedom 30
Freedom and Obligation: From Choice to Contract 35
Warrior Women, Invisible Wives 44
Natural Freedom, Civil Contract 49
The Social Construction of Freedom 63
The Containment of Difference 70
Conclusion 77

CHAPTER TWO: John Locke: Freedom, Reason, and the Education of Citizen-Subjects 79
The Role of Reason 80
Nature versus Nurture: The Role of Education 87
The Gendered Property of Freedom 91
Consent, Choice, and a Two-Tiered Conception of Freedom 99
The Construction of Individuality, the Discipline of Freedom 106
Conclusion 115

CHAPTER THREE: Jean-Jacques Rousseau: Force, Freedom, and Family 118
Rousseau's Three Kinds of Freedom 119
Politics and the Will 125
Education, Will, and the Social Construction of Citizens 133
Gender, Education, and Virtue 138
Julie, or The Woman as Model Citizen 152
Gender, Passion, and Politics 161
Conclusion 166

CHAPTER FOUR: Immanuel Kant: The Inner World of Freedom 168
Transcendence and Phenomena 169
Ethics and Politics 178
Class, Education, and Social Construction 188
Sexual Constructions 195
Conclusion 207

CHAPTER FIVE: John Stuart Mill: Utility, Democracy, Equality 213
The "Two Mills" 216
Internal and External Realms 223
The Will to Utility 229
Democracy, Class, and Gender 238
The Class of Education 249
Politics, Participation, and Power 260
Conclusion 266

CONCLUSION: Rethinking Freedom in the Canon 274
Freedom in Its Two Forms 274
Gender, Class, and Berlin's Typology 281
The Social Construction of Freedom 287

Notes 291
References 317
Index 331

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