The Soul of Justice: Social Bonds and Racial Hubris

The Soul of Justice: Social Bonds and Racial Hubris

by Cynthia Willett
     
 

ISBN-10: 0801487153

ISBN-13: 9780801487156

Pub. Date: 08/23/2001

Publisher: Cornell University Press

Cynthia Willett brings together diverse insights from social psychology, classical and contemporary literature, and legal and justice theory to redefine the basis of the moral and legal person.Feminists, communitarians, and postmodern thinkers have made clear that classical liberalism, with its emphasis on individual autonomy and excessive rationalism, is severely

Overview

Cynthia Willett brings together diverse insights from social psychology, classical and contemporary literature, and legal and justice theory to redefine the basis of the moral and legal person.Feminists, communitarians, and postmodern thinkers have made clear that classical liberalism, with its emphasis on individual autonomy and excessive rationalism, is severely limited. Although she is sympathetic with the liberal view, Willett finds it necessary to go further. For her, attention to the social dimensions of the family and civil society is critical if issues of race, gender, class, and sexuality are to be taken seriously. Interdependency, not autonomy, is of increasing significance in an era of globalization.Willett proposes an alternate normative theory that recognizes the impact of social forces on individual well-being. Citizenship in a democracy should not be defined solely on the basis of rights to autonomy, such as bare rights to property or free speech, she explains. Rather, citizenship should be defined first of all in terms of the rights, responsibilities, and capacities of the social person.It is within the African American tradition of political thought that Willett finds a more useful definition of human identity and political freedom. The African American experience offers a compelling vision of social change and a deeper understanding of what it means to be a social person. By focusing on everyday battles against racism, Willett contends, we can gain valuable insight into the meaning of justice.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780801487156
Publisher:
Cornell University Press
Publication date:
08/23/2001
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x (d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsix
Prologue: Eros and Hubris: Social Justice in Old and New World Settings1
Part IA Marriage of Autonomy and Care
1The Ethics of Care and Its Limits31
2Hidden Narratives and Discourse Ethics45
3Joining Together Reason and Care65
4The Outsider Within: A Model of the Citizen as Worker and Friend80
Part IIA Dialectic of Eros and Freedom
5The Erotic Soul of Existential Marxism: Marcuse101
6This Poem That Is My Body: Irigaray123
Part IIIA Discourse of Love, A Practice of Freedom
7The Mother Wit of Justice: Eros and Hubris in the African-American Context157
8The Genealogy of Freedom in Slave America: Frederick Douglass188
9Narratives of Hubris, Songs of Love: Toni Morrison's Beloved203
Down Here in Paradise: A Coda227
Index237

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