`Well, you go there to get off': Visiting feminist care ethics through a women's bathhouse

Feminist Theory 8 (3):243-262 (2007)

Abstract

This paper examines normative feminist care scholarship through the lens of a sexual bathhouse. At first glance, a space dedicated to casual sexual pleasure seems at odds with feminist care. Drawing on the Toronto Women's Bathhouse as a case study, this paper argues that bathhouse spaces can exemplify feminist care norms. At the same time, as a casual sexual space oriented towards personal autonomy, carefree conduct, and self-care, TWB also challenges certain feminist care assumptions. Drawing on these challenges, in the light of wider problems with normative care theorizing, particularly the sanitization and idealization of personal relationships, the paper seeks to revision care along non-normative lines.

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