Masculinity seems to play a role in the recruitment and radicalization of lone-wolf terrorists and other violent extremists. In this chapter, we examine multiple dimensions of masculinity in six corpora. We do so via linguistic analysis of the corpora associated with and produced by a range of groups and individuals. In particular, we analyze two corpora from each of: men’s rights groups, male supremacists, and manifestos of male domestic terrorists. Our results indicate that there are four distinct strands of thinking, (...) language, and behavior in these groups and individuals: dominant masculinity, which manifests in domination of both women and other men, subsidiary masculinity, which manifests in resentful reactions to domination by other men, misogyny, which manifests in resentful or outright hateful attitudes and actions towards women, and xenophobia, which manifests in fearful and vengeful reactions to perceived invasion by outsiders, especially foreign men. (shrink)
In this chapter, Filipa Melo Lopes looks at incel violence, and argues that the two most common feminist analyses of their actions—their objectification of women or their sense of entitlement to women’s attention—are insufficient. They fail to account for incels’ distinctive ambivalence towards women, namely their oscillation between obsessive desire and violent hatred. Melo Lopes proposes instead that what incels want is a Beauvoirian ‘Other’—discussed by Beauvoir in her chapter on myths in terms of the ‘Eternal Feminine’. For Beauvoir, when (...) men conceive of women as Others, they function as sui generis entities through which men can experience themselves as praiseworthy heroes, but also risk the denial of their so-called exceptionality. Melo Lopes then goes on to give an illustrative analysis of Elliot Rodger’s autobiographical manifesto, My Twisted World, showing how Beauvoir’s analysis of the myth of woman sheds light on Rodger’s racist and classist attitudes and gives us a better understanding of his ambivalence towards women. Beauvoir, according to Melo Lopes, therefore constitutes a powerful and overlooked theoretical alternative to accounts centered on objectification and entitlement. (shrink)
In recent years, online “involuntary celibate” or “incel” communities have been linked to various deadly attacks targeting women. Why do these men react to romantic rejection with not just disappointment, but murderous rage? Feminists have claimed this is because incels desire women as objects or, alternatively, because they feel entitled to women’s attention. I argue that both of these explanatory models are insufficient. They fail to account for incels’ distinctive ambivalence toward women—for their oscillation between obsessive desire and violent hatred. (...) I propose instead that what incels want is a Beauvoirian “Other.” For Beauvoir, when men conceive of women as Others, they represent them as simultaneously human subjects and embodiments of the natural world. Women function then as sui generis entities through which men can experience themselves as praiseworthy heroes, regardless of the quality of their actions. I go on to give an illustrative analysis of Elliot Rodger’s autobiographical manifesto, “My Twisted World.” I show how this Beauvoirian model sheds light on Rodger’s racist and classist attitudes and gives us a better understanding of his ambivalence toward women. It therefore constitutes a powerful and overlooked theoretical alternative to accounts centered on objectification and entitlement. (shrink)
This exciting new Handbook offers a comprehensive overview of the contemporary state of the field in feminist philosophy. The editors' introduction and forty-five essays cover feminist critical engagements with philosophy and adjacent scholarly fields, as well as feminist approaches to current debates and crises across the world. Authors cover topics ranging from the ways in which feminist philosophy attends to other systems of oppression, and the gendered, racialized, and classed assumptions embedded in philosophical concepts, to feminist perspectives on prominent subfields (...) of philosophy. The first section contains chapters that explore feminist philosophical engagement with mainstream and marginalized histories and traditions, while the second section parses feminist philosophy's contributions to numerous philosophical subfields, for example metaphysics and bioethics. A third section explores what feminist philosophy can illuminate about crucial moral and political issues of identity, gender, the body, autonomy, prisons, among numerous others. The Handbook concludes with the field's engagement with other theories and movements, including trans studies, queer theory, critical race, theory, postcolonial theory, and decolonial theory. The volume provides a rigorous but accessible resource for students and scholars who are interested in feminist philosophy, and how feminist philosophers situate their work in relation to the philosophical mainstream and other disciplines. Above all it aims to showcase the rich diversity of subject matter, approach, and method among feminist philosophers. (shrink)
A number of philosophers and feminist authors have recently equated domestic abuse with the ubiquitous and ill-defined concept of “terrorism.” Claudia Card, for instance, argues that domestic abuse is a frequently ignored form of terrorism that creates and maintains “heterosexual male dominance and female dependence and service”. Alison Jaggar, in a recent article, also concludes that an acceptable definition of terrorism will find rape and domestic violence to be terrorist acts. Yet there seem to be several obstacles to any simple (...) appropriation of the term “terrorism” for cases of domestic abuse. In this paper I will address what I take to be three significant problems that might be raised with regard to any attempt to identify domestic abuse as an act of terrorism. These problems include the fact that a) definitions of terrorism usually require clear political motivations, b) definitions of terrorism normally require that the terrorist intend to create a climate of terror, and c) adopting the term terrorism for cases of domestic abuse might appear simply inappropriate or unhelpful. I will argue, however, that each of these possible objections can be answered effectively and that domestic abuse rightly falls under the rubric of terrorism. (shrink)
In this essay, Denike assesses the appropriation of international human rights by humanitarian law and policy of "security states." She maps representations of the perpetrators and victims of "tyranny" and "terror, " and their role in providing a "just cause" for the U.S.–led "war on terror. " By examining narratives of progress and human rights heroism Denike shows how human rights discourses, when used together with the pretense of self-defense and preemptive war, do the opposite of what they claim—entrenching the (...) sovereignty of Western imperialist states while eroding the conditions necessary for the recognition of the human rights of others. (shrink)
In this essay, Denike assesses the appropriation of international human rights by humanitarian law and policy of “security states.” She maps representations of the perpetrators and victims of “tyranny” and “terror,” and their role in providing a “just cause” for the U.S.-led “war on terror.” By examining narratives of progress and human rights heroism Denike shows how human rights discourses, when used together with the pretense of self-defense and preemptive war, do the opposite of what they claim—entrenching the sovereignty of (...) Western imperialist states while eroding the conditions necessary for the recognition of the human rights of others. (shrink)
In this essay, Robin May Schott criticizes leading proponents of just war theory and introduces the notion of justifiable but illegitimate violence. Instead of legitimating some wars as just, it is better to acknowledge that both the situation of war and moral judgments about war are ambiguous. Schott raises the questions: What are alternative narratives of war? And what are alternative narratives to war? Such narratives are necessary for addressing the concepts of evil and of witnessing in the ethical discourse (...) after Auschwitz. (shrink)
Should women’s terrorist acts be understood differently than similar acts carried out by men? Does the gender identity of a terrorist make a difference to the meaning of a terrorist’s acts? Commentators who explain women’s involvement in terrorism often offer explanations other than political commitment. They often refer instead to factors in the women’s personal relationships, thereby drawing on gender stereotypes and diminishing the women’s political commitments. I suggest instead that terrorism by a woman involves symbolic political “testimony.” It amounts (...) to saying that someone who is a typically nonviolent sort of person has engaged in violence on behalf of a political cause. Because of this significance, women’s terrorism merits a more serious consideration as testimony than similar acts by men. (shrink)
The lies about the reasons for the U.S. war against Iraq provoked no mass public outcry in the United States against the war. What is the process of justification for this war, a process that seems to need no reasons? Mann argues that the process of justification is not a process of rational deliberation but one of aesthetic self-constitution, of rebuilding a masculine national identity. Included is a feminist reading of the National Defense University document Shock and Awe.
Schweickart argues that Gould in her most recent book seems to have shifted away from the notion of economic democracy as “one person, one vote” to a less radical modified stakeholder view in which the various constituents of the economic enterprise, including employees, stockholders, and managers, share in decision-making power. Noting that Gould does not explain why she holds that workplace democracy is a too stringent participatory demand, Schweickart brings up a variety of arguments that might be offered in support (...) of her claim and finds them all clearly wanting. More briefly, he addresses Gould’s normative analysis of terrorism, concluding that it raises, but does not address, the difficult question, “Should we empathize with the [suicide] terrorists?” [Abstract prepared by the Editors.]. (shrink)
: The concept of a war on terrorism creates havoc with attempts to apply rules of war. For "terrorism" is not an agent. Nor is it clear what relationship to terrorism agents must have in order to be legitimate targets. Nor is it clear what kinds of terrorism count. Would a war on terrorism in the home be a justifiable response to domestic battering? If not, do similar objections apply to a war on public terrorism?
: This article argues that U.S. aggression against Afghanistan must be challenged through our support of the Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA) and their political program. It does so not only by considering competing judgments about what constitutes women's rights, but also through an appeal to the Kantian ideal of humanity and its relation to how we can re-think both terrorism and the treatment of those accused of terrorist activity.
In this paper, I distinguish terrorism from other crimes and from war, noting that terrorism may be perpetrated not only by private individuals and members of nonstate organizations, but also that it may be ordered by the state. Since terrorism is illegal almost everywhere, I argue that the proper response to it is usually through law enforcement rather than military measures. In some circumstances, however, I content that even law enforcement procedures may be used by the state to terrorize civilians. (...) Since nonstate terrorism is usually intended to draw attention to social grievances, I conclude that eliminating terrorism requires addressing those grievances. (shrink)
This essay expresses ambivalence about the use of the term "evil" in analyses of terrorism in light of the association of the two in speeches intended to justify the United States' "war on terrorism." At the same time, the essay suggests that terrorism can be regarded as "evil" but only when considered among a multiplicity of "evils" comparable to it, for example: rape, war crimes, and repression.
: I try to identify the distinct moral horror occasioned by the attacks of September 11 in order to accord them an appropriate, limited place in the ongoing history of terror and violence. I consider the agents of evil and the victims as evil constructs them. I conclude with victim stories that reveal evil by showing the goodness it violates, making us feel the bitter loss of what violence has killed, kills, and will kill again.
: This essay examines the relationship between nonviolence and trustworthiness. I focus on questions of accountability for people in midlevel positions of power, where multiple loyalties and responsibilities create conflicts and where policies can push people into actions that reinstate hegemonic relations. A case study from crisis counseling is presented in which the (mis)management of the case exacerbated previous violence done to a biracial female. The importance of resistance to dominant ideology is scrutinized.
This essay examines the relationship between nonviolence and trustworthiness. I focus on questions of accountability for people in midlevel positions of power, where multiple loyalties and responsibilities create conflicts and where policies can push people into actions that reinstate hegemonic relations. A case study from crisis counseling is presented in which the management of the case exacerbated previous violence done to a biracial female. The importance of resistance to dominant ideology is scrutinized.
Only rarely have feminist theorists addressed the adequacy of just -war theory, a set of principles developed over hundreds of years to assess the justice of going to war and the morality of conduct in war. Recently, a few feminist scholars have found just -war theory inadequate, yet their own counterproposals are also deficient. I assess feminist contributions to just -war theorizing and suggest ways of strengthening, rather than abandoning, this moral approach to war.