Bodies and Pleasures: Foucault And The Politics Of Sexual Normalization

Paperback | July 22, 1999

byLaDelle McWhorter

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Sexual identities are dangerous, Michel Foucault tells us. Categories of desire harden into stereotypes by which the forces of normalization hold us and judge us. In Bodies and Pleasures, Ladelle McWhorter reads Foucault from an original and personal angle, motivated by the differences this experience has made in her life. At the same time, her analysis advances discussion of key issues in Foucault scholarship: the genealogical critique, the status of the subject and humanism, essentialism versus social construction, and the relationships between identity, community, and political action. Weaving her own experience of coming to grips with her lesbian sexual identity into her readings of Foucault's most recent writings on sexuality and power, McWhorter argues compellingly that Foucault's texts should be read less for the arguments they advance and more for their transformative effect. By exploring bodies and pleasures-gardening, line dancing, or doing philosophy, for example-McWhorter shows that it isn't necessary to conform with socially recognized sexual identities. Bodies and Pleasures takes the reader beyond unexplored norms and imposed identities as it points the way toward a personal politics, ethics, and style that challenges our sexual selves.

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Sexual identities are dangerous, Michel Foucault tells us. Categories of desire harden into stereotypes by which the forces of normalization hold us and judge us. In Bodies and Pleasures, Ladelle McWhorter reads Foucault from an original and personal angle, motivated by the differences this experience has made in her life. At the same ...

Ladelle McWhorter is Associate Professor ofPhilosophy and Women's Studies and Chair of the Department of Philosophy at the University of Richmond. Her previous publications include an edited volume entitled Heidegger and the Earth: Essays in Environmental Philosophy and articles on Foucault, Bataille, and feminist and queer theory. She...

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$40.40 online$41.95list price
Format:PaperbackDimensions:288 pages, 9.25 × 6.12 × 0.64 inPublished:July 22, 1999Publisher:Indiana University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0253213258

ISBN - 13:9780253213259

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Table of Contents

Abbreviations
Introduction: Foucault's Impact: Challenges and Transformations
Ch. 1: Views from the Site of Political Oppression: Or, How I served as an Anchor Point for Power and Emerged as a Locus of Resistance
Ch. 2: Genealogical Diversions: Wherein the Ascetic Priestess Loses Her Way and Begins to Wander Aimlessly Through Dem Ole Cotton Fields Back Home
Ch. 3: Why I Shouldn't Like Foucault... So They Say
Ch. 4: Disorientation: Or, Beyond Sex-Desire
Ch. 5: Natural Bodies: Or, Ain't Nobody Here But Us Deviants
Ch. 6: Self-Overcoming Through Ascetic Pleasures
Ch. 7: Counterattack: An Ethics of Style
Inconclusion
Notes
Index