Difference between revisions of "Talk:Andrea Dworkin"

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(Have you all read her?)
(Have you all read her?)
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{{User:ListenerX/sig0}} 17:52, 1 March 2009 (EST)
 
{{User:ListenerX/sig0}} 17:52, 1 March 2009 (EST)
 
::Nice.  You give two examples which are (a) not comparable to pregnancy and (b) not comparable to abortion.  Well done! --[[User:Kels|Kels]] 18:45, 1 March 2009 (EST)
 
::Nice.  You give two examples which are (a) not comparable to pregnancy and (b) not comparable to abortion.  Well done! --[[User:Kels|Kels]] 18:45, 1 March 2009 (EST)
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:: Ditto to the above.
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::So you ''do'' believe that people should be forced to donate their organs and blood to the needy. (Being a doctor is a profession that requires the saving of a life; it is not comparable.) How disgustingly honest. So a woman's body is free game to ''some people'', but not to others? You still operate under the assumption that a woman has less rights to her body than others.
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::I take issue to the idea that I have a personal disdain for housewives. I do not. I am merely pointing out the conditions most housewives face. I think it is horrible that women must face these conditions (domestic slavery) if they choose to have children. Even ''hearty thanks'' as you put them does not detract from the tremendous load women have to bear for the sake of the institution of "family".
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::As for your hypothetical and not-comparable-to-abortion situation, no, I would not find it acceptable, as material possessions may be used by anyone. However, if a woman came to me and by some method attached herself to my organs in order to sustain her own life, and my body and future was thus compromised by this intruder, then yes I would cut her off. Even if that removal caused her death.
 +
::No, they didn't have abortions in pagan Iceland. Abortions are the termination of a ''pregnancy''. (I like your snide remark disparaging all mothers' struggles everywhere, by the way, very chauvinistic and dismissive). And no, it would not be acceptable to me as ''anyone'' may take care of a born child. Should they raise that child willingly? Absolutely. You cannot force anyone to adopt a child. Similarly, you should not be able to force a woman to bear a child. Your implication that a 12 week old fetus is comparable to a born, independent baby is ''very'' humorous. --[[User:Astrophilia|Astrophilia]] 19:01, 1 March 2009 (EST) (Yes, I made an account.)
  
 
===Old branch of the thread===  
 
===Old branch of the thread===  
 
:::Godot, I pretty much agree with you--somewhere above, a long tiome ago, I made a comment about how feminism has moved beyond a lot of what Dworkin wrote about, but this doesn't make her interventions any less crucial. And I think that people who pile on her do so sometimes because they want her to be more "objective"--which was not at all her goal. [[User:TheoryOfPractice|TheoryOfPractice]] 11:56, 27 February 2009 (EST)
 
:::Godot, I pretty much agree with you--somewhere above, a long tiome ago, I made a comment about how feminism has moved beyond a lot of what Dworkin wrote about, but this doesn't make her interventions any less crucial. And I think that people who pile on her do so sometimes because they want her to be more "objective"--which was not at all her goal. [[User:TheoryOfPractice|TheoryOfPractice]] 11:56, 27 February 2009 (EST)
 
::::Anyone who reads philo of any kind realizes that philosophy (and religious writing, and probably political writings) are creations of their time.  I love reading de Beauvoir, her french is just delicious, but what was offensive and groundbreaking in the 1930s, is today so common and understood, that most girls reading her today go... "um, and this is a good philosopher, why?  She's just stating the obvious"    Dworkin asks of men and women, is there something implicit in the act of being the penitrator vs., the penitratee that makes the sexual act a power play?  and if so, what must the social repercussions be, and how do you change that?  I'd be curious to talk with a gay male able this, who can (and does?) take on both aspects of the sexual act.  Viewing women's sexuality from the eyes of someone who "lives" (as far as teh sexual act) in both worlds - penitrator and penetratee. --{{User:WaitingforGodot/sig1}} 12:04, 27 February 2009 (EST)
 
::::Anyone who reads philo of any kind realizes that philosophy (and religious writing, and probably political writings) are creations of their time.  I love reading de Beauvoir, her french is just delicious, but what was offensive and groundbreaking in the 1930s, is today so common and understood, that most girls reading her today go... "um, and this is a good philosopher, why?  She's just stating the obvious"    Dworkin asks of men and women, is there something implicit in the act of being the penitrator vs., the penitratee that makes the sexual act a power play?  and if so, what must the social repercussions be, and how do you change that?  I'd be curious to talk with a gay male able this, who can (and does?) take on both aspects of the sexual act.  Viewing women's sexuality from the eyes of someone who "lives" (as far as teh sexual act) in both worlds - penitrator and penetratee. --{{User:WaitingforGodot/sig1}} 12:04, 27 February 2009 (EST)

Revision as of 00:01, 2 March 2009

"Slander"?

How can you slander someone who says "Under patriarchy, every woman's son is ... the inevitable rapist or exploiter of another woman." as being a misandrist? Do the "hate speech test": change "woman's son" to "black man" or "muslim" and see how it sounds. She clearly was misandrist. --Toffeeman 12:32, 17 December 2008 (EST)

Er, yeah. When you completely change the words it is offensive. Saying "black man" or "Muslim" instead of "woman's son" completely changes the meaning and social connotation. However, with the qualifier under patriarchy, her statement is completely true. --194.80.32.9 07:12, 26 February 2009 (EST)
Most people do not dispute this. However, there were certain right-wing smears on her that used false or out-of-context quotes to make this conclusion. Although the conclusion was arguably true, the false quotes constituted slander. (That quote might itself be false; I could not find any neutral or pro-Dworkin source confirming that she said it, hence the qualifier, "She was supposed to have said.") Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 12:49, 17 December 2008 (EST)
There is a reference to the source here. (The joys of Googlebooks)--Toffeeman 13:01, 17 December 2008 (EST)
I have inserted this reference and removed the qualifier. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 13:05, 17 December 2008 (EST)

Moonbat v Wingnut

Can you acutally be both? ArmondikoVmoral 12:53, 17 December 2008 (EST)

I added her to both categories because she was an extreme moonbat herself, but extreme wingnuts latched on to her anti-pornography crusade. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 12:53, 17 December 2008 (EST)
Thanks for the clarification. I was getting extremely confused. ArmondikoVmoral 13:06, 17 December 2008 (EST)
Lyndon LaRouche can. Cubic evil Hoover!

Quote mine

My initial reaction to this is it might be a bit quote-miney. I started to try to put some sense into the article but it is all over the place jumping from one topic to the next could someone who knows this women's views well put it into some semblance of a prose. - User \pi 23:00, 17 December 2008 (EST)

I'm not expert on this woman...

But doesn't it seem that most of her arguments remove all agency from a woman? Pornography, even if all involved are female, is an assault on the women involved. Marriage is a shackling of the woman in it, no matter how much she wants in. It seems (to this liberal feminist) that Dworkin's arguments recycle a lot more of many anti-feminist ideas about women and sex than this article shows. Am I missing something? (And I mean this sincerely--what do I not get about her?) Researcher 23:40, 17 December 2008 (EST)

No. The patriarchy removes all agency from a woman. Dworkin was just pointing this out. --194.80.32.9 08:20, 26 February 2009 (EST)
Susie Bright, individualist feminists, and Andrew Sullivan said roughly the same thing, that anti-feminists and Dworkin both wanted the State and society to coddle and protect women like weak, helpless creatures --- just to different ends. Several of her friends remarked that Dworkin was "a weak, vulnerable person." Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 23:57, 17 December 2008 (EST)
Individualist feminists should admit they are anti-feminist to their core. --194.80.32.9 08:20, 26 February 2009 (EST)
In other words, they are not Red methodologically post-Marxist enough to satisfy the likes of Dworkin... Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 11:15, 26 February 2009 (EST)
No, everything they say is completely anti-feminist. The founders of their ideology are anti-feminist, but just refuse to admit it. You can't be a Libertarian and a feminist. They used the word 'feminist' and co-opted it for their own movement. --89.243.240.113 08:09, 27 February 2009 (EST)
"You can't be a Libertarian and a feminist" — why, because you have to be a collectivist to be one? Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 11:03, 27 February 2009 (EST)
I think the argument would work like this: libertarianism is focused on the individual, and assumes that social/economic justice is best served by having each individual pursue her self-interest with as few limits as possible in her way. Feminism starts from the position that that is not possible for the half of the people in a given society that are saddled with structural barriers based on their sex/gender; therefore, libertarianism has fundamental tenets which conflict with the fundamentals of feminism. TheoryOfPractice 11:11, 27 February 2009 (EST) PS you say collectivist like it's a dirty word. TheoryOfPractice 11:18, 27 February 2009 (EST)
That is only a certain sort of feminism, though. The feminism of old time focused on issues such as giving women the rights to own property and vote and have equal protection under the law, and those goals are very much compatible with individualism. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 11:23, 27 February 2009 (EST)
No, the "feminism of old time" (I don't know to what you are referring, even) did not just focus on "equal rights". You can only have (even the concept of being "given" rights by the ruling classes is problematic) equals rights on a level playing field, which does not exist within a patriarchy. Individualist "feminism" and Libertarianism ignores the concept of society and completely forgets about the massive patriarchy all around us that oppresses us, restricts us, and takes away our agency (and by 'us', I mean 'oppressed classes'.) Any so-called feminist who thinks that women are restricted only by the written law, and the only way to counteract the massive social and economic injustices against women is through individual perseverance, needs to take a harder look at the patriarchy. --194.80.32.9 11:57, 27 February 2009 (EST)
To put it into your lingo, "first-wave feminism."
You seem to think that one has to be a collectivist (more specifically, someone who adopts a Marxist theory of "class") to be a feminist. I disagree. The first-wave feminists, just for starters, did not generally adopt such beliefs. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 12:33, 27 February 2009 (EST)
Except they did. They understood that women as a class were oppressed politically, economically, and socially. They understood that women as a class ('class' is not a purely Marxist concept) did not control their own lives, bodies, or destinies in any way. They did not stop at getting women the vote; they knew that many oppressive systems existed, such as inequalities in higher education and the workplace, and they went on to change those as well. Second-wave feminism expanded on this and moved on to fight for equality beyond the written law, definitely, but to say that first wave feminists didn't believe in class is ridiculous. A good deal of first-wave feminists were Marxists or Anarchists. Individualists can't be feminists; they're the ones saying it's the oppressed's fault that they're oppressed. --81.151.236.108 16:21, 27 February 2009 (EST)
I did not say that first-wave feminists did not believe in class, period; only that they were not all collectivists.
Although obviously "class" is not a Marxist idea per se, emphasizing as you do a conflict between two distinct classes of rulers and ruled, in the context of making a change in society, is a distinctly Marxist idea.
Since first-wave feminism had its beginnings before the birth of Marx, and was a full-blown movement before most of his theory (or the theory of collectivist anarchism, which owes much to Marx) was developed, obviously some first-wave feminists did not share these ideas. Mary Wollstonecraft, in particular, was of the liberal sort; she was the wife of an individualist and, if not one herself, was certainly not hostile to his views. Lucretia Mott was a Quaker minister.
Also, you are making a straw man characterization of individualism. I do not believe that being on the short end of social inequality is any "fault" of the people concerned; there are many ways in which people can make a living, and if one is not qualified for employment on good terms in one time and place, that is no indicator that s/he will not at some other time and different place be thus qualified. Not to mention that there is also a strong element of luck in where one winds up on the social ladder.
The sort of people who state that one's position on the social ladder is due entirely to his/her merit or demerit are often not individualists at all; they welcome individual initiative and achievement only when it brings benefit to some favored collective of theirs, like a corporation or a State. Hence, the contempt that this sort of person often shows for, e.g., artists and other such "free spirits" who show much individual initiative and achievement but have no truck with "the system."
That is one of the good things about individualism: it allows different people and groups to have different standards of what constitutes one's place on a social ladder. Look at this Wiki and Conservapedia, for examples in miniature — noting that we are more individualist and that Conservapedia is more collectivist. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 02:29, 28 February 2009 (EST)
First-wave feminists did see 'men and women' as two distinct classes of rulers and ruled, respectively. Otherwise there could be no basis for feminism. Furthermore, Wollstonecraft and Mott were deemed feminists after the fact. --81.151.236.108 08:17, 28 February 2009 (EST)
"Otherwise there could be no basis for feminism" — Ah, I see; we are not arguing from facts, but from dogma. That might go over well some places, but it is not an acceptable sort of argument for proving facts on this Wiki.
Many of the arguments made by first-wave feminists were not laid on the basis of class, but on the basis of a consistent application of liberal ideals — simply the idea that when liberals spoke of all people being equal, that should include women as well. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 02:30, 1 March 2009 (EST)
And that is misguided, because men as a class oppress women as a class. Voltairine de Cleyre and Emma Goldman understood this. Returning to my original point, "Individualist Femnists" are not feminists; they have co-opted the word to suit their own anti-feminist ideals. This happens a lot. --81.151.236.108 06:54, 1 March 2009 (EST)
You might think such arguments are misguided, but the first-wave feminists who made them obviously did not. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 17:52, 1 March 2009 (EST)
And many of these first-wave feminists didn't think a woman had much place outside of the home and were very much for traditional gender roles. Mary Wollstonecraft herself even held men as the golden standard to which women should aspire. Again, if you don't think such a thing as the patriarchy exists, or that men and women have in every way except the law a level playing field, and that there can be such a thing as institutionalized sexism against men, they are barely feminists. --81.151.236.108 18:37, 1 March 2009 (EST)
But this is an article about Dworkin. Guess what kind of feminist she was. TheoryOfPractice 11:25, 27 February 2009 (EST)
The argument is not whether Dworkin was an individualist feminist or not, but whether that designator is an oxymoron or not. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 11:35, 27 February 2009 (EST)
I think what you don't get is historical context--I think her arguments needed to be made when they were made as a sort of base-line from which to begin to explore, from a tabula rasa, the ways in which women have worked within and around unequal power relationships in order to exercise agency and create politics/power and meaning. Dworkin's work is unsettling, and it forces us to confront some ugly truths about male/female relationships. But a lot of feminist scholars have moved beyond Dworkin in just the ways you describe--and while porn-positive feminism, for example, may have been an oxymoron in Dworkin's time, I don't think it could have happened without her interventions. PFoster 00:03, 18 December 2008 (EST)
See, that makes perfect sense to me (and was something I was mulling in my head earlier, before I forgot about it and typed the above.) Can someone who actually knows more about this topic get this conversation (both what Listener and PFoster said) into the article? Or more into the article? Also, Listener...love the Mjollner in your sig. Researcher 00:06, 18 December 2008 (EST)
I am in the middle of re-working the article right now, although it will probably need some input from the other side of the spectrum when I am done with it. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 00:11, 18 December 2008 (EST)

Dworkin was a left-winger

  1. Before she became a radical feminist, Dworkin was an anarchist and active in the 1960s anti-war protests. This was how she met her first husband.
  2. Dworkin's colleague, Catharine MacKinnon, once described her and Dworkin's sort of feminism as "methodologically post-Marxist;" as I understand it, this is because it views women approximately how classical Marxism views the proletariat.

Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 14:52, 6 February 2009 (EST)

Have you all read her?

I'm curious because many people who have opinions on Dworkin tend to have not read her, but rather have read comments by others (on either side of the argument) about what she had to say. I find, having read Mercy, Right wing women, and Intercourse, that the typical arguments found on sites like this rather polarize her more complex arguments. Just my two cents. I didn't really enjoy her writing, so I never read beyond what was assigned in class.--Sun mowse.pngEn attendant Godot"To-morrow, when I wake, or think I do, what shall I say of to-day?" 11:26, 27 February 2009 (EST)

I have read some of her rav — er, works; besides having frankly frightening sentence structure (which worsened as she got older and crazier), their complex arguments mostly just mixed lurid and contemptuous descriptions of men and sex with historical-materialist conspiracy theories. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 11:33, 27 February 2009 (EST)
Listener, again with the grammar and the "anything not mainstream capitalist" is loony Marxism. At least you're a two-trick pony, I suppose. TheoryOfPractice 11:38, 27 February 2009 (EST)
You are overgeneralizing again. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 11:47, 27 February 2009 (EST)
(Edit Conflict)::I am curious what's so crazy about the idea that for 2000+ years, women's value as breeder and sexual object forces her into a position of "wife" with all the lack of independence it holds; that sexuality was and has been throughout patriarchal cultures, something to hide for women, something not to be enjoyed by women, something dirty and shameful for women (though not always for men - depended on the culture); that women knowingly used sex as a way to get things in life, in society, and in their marriage, and that when you have limited voice to say "I'm going out into the world to make my own way", marriage and all sexual relations become a mere aspect of rape even *if* you happen to like it; that when the sexually produced materials are made by men, and for men, in a culture where women act *still* as objects though they may now be paid for it; when they are not included in the pay as writers, creative consultants; when the very act of having a porn industry reinforces the idea that women are predominantly just boobs and holes for male members; when our advertisement industry reinforces this position; where our children's fairy tales still insist that women are both weak and exist to be married to men - dream of it, and only it; I just don't see where these ideas are "bat shit crazy". We've moved on, we've modified and tweaked them, but they are sound ideas based on a patriarchal culture that continues to define women in its own terms and in relation to men's sexuality, and not on our own terms and in relation to our sexuality. --Sun mowse.pngEn attendant Godot"To-morrow, when I wake, or think I do, what shall I say of to-day?" 11:51, 27 February 2009 (EST)
(EC) Uh, not exactly what I was thinking about. I was thinking more about when she said that the 1960s counterculture only came about because men found it a handy way to bring their oppression into girls' pants, and lost its steam when it ceased thus to be handy. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 12:06, 27 February 2009 (EST)
You know that Dworkin wasn't the only person saying this, right? Steinem has said the same thing; the 60's free-love movement was for men, not women. --81.151.236.108 16:24, 27 February 2009 (EST)
You criticize people a lot around here for not being "good" writers in your concept. If this idea of Dworkin is the idea you were criticizing about Dworkin, don't you think a "good writer" would be specific about that one *very minor* aspect of her writing? Also, I believe you misconstrue what she is saying. She is saying that the feminist movement of the day isn't going far enough, and becomes a tool used by the political male, to divert from other far more important issues about women's identity. Something I would say we are quite good at today. the "pro-choice" movement is NOT a women's movement, it's a men's movement. And it's done to distract women from dealing with real issues like "being an equal participant in humanity", or you know "stopping the government from stealing every bit of money we have and giving it to their rich (male) buddies". Just cause an issue is "about" things a woman can or cannot do, does not mean it's a women's issue.--Sun mowse.pngEn attendant Godot"To-morrow, when I wake, or think I do, what shall I say of to-day?" 12:14, 27 February 2009 (EST)
By the "very minor" aspect of her writing, do you mean her sentence structure? (And I dispute your statement about the "pro-choice" movement.) Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 12:45, 27 February 2009 (EST)

I see where the pro-choice arguement comes from: discourses about abortion serve to reproduce/reinforce women's subject position as reproducers/receptacles. Interesting. TheoryOfPractice 12:49, 27 February 2009 (EST)

The issue about abortion is about politicizing women. There is no other medical issue that requires we have endless debates, that require we belly up and justify what our choices are, that would stigmatize us one way *or* the other when in comes to things like politics. By the way, if you have an unwanted pregnancy, you can't win. Society says if you have an abortion you are a bad mom; if you give your kid up for adoption, you are a bad mom; if you keep your kid but need food stamps, you are a bad mom. Basically, we criminalize and politicize being female. And, while doing that, while FORCING me to fight for my right not to be a mother, I don't have time or energy to focus on non-gender related issues. So, Listener, you can "dispute", except that you don't. You just say "no, that's not what I think." Ok, you have your right to your opinion. As most people know, I work 6 month of the year on women's legal issues in the government (the other 6 month on election issues). I'm forced to play that game, cause the patriarchy thinks it is ACCEPTABLE to make things I do with my body, their business. "I'm a pro-choice candidate", "I'm a pro life candidate". well, my body should simply not be a valid place for you to make political hay.--Sun mowse.pngEn attendant Godot"To-morrow, when I wake, or think I do, what shall I say of to-day?" 13:08, 27 February 2009 (EST)
My dispute was that it is a conspiracy theory ("THEY'RE JUST MAKING THIS DEBATE TO DISTRACT US!"), hence is worthy of as much consideration as any other conspiracy theory.
As to your remarks about how "society says this, society says that" — society does not say those things, as society is an abstract concept; individuals within a society say them, and those listening would do well to remember what Aesop said on that subject.
"...we criminalize and politicize being female..." Since when has being a woman been a crime?
"...my body is not a valid place for you to make political hay..." This sounds as if you, being (presumably) for legal abortion, are trying to close down the debate on the question. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 13:34, 27 February 2009 (EST)
The point is that the debate over when life starts, what's moral, what's just etc. does distract from the real issue: that either women are people deserving of bodily sovereignty or they are just tools for reproduction. There would be no debate if a woman's humanity wasn't in question. This is why it's a crime to be female; your humanity comes into question every damn day. Your society comment, by the way, makes me laugh. People are never arranged into groups or anything, and no one specific group has been in power forever. "There is no society, just individuals and families". Wait, no. That was Margaret Thatcher. --81.151.236.108 16:28, 27 February 2009 (EST)
(1) It is one thing to speak of certain tangential effects of a debate, and another to say, as WaitingforGodot did, that the entire debate is being made with the intention of producing said effects.
(2) Nobody says that women are subhuman, except perhaps for Fall down, and nobody listens to him anyway.
(3) The choice you postulate of "freedom or babies" is a false dichotomy; if for some incomprehensible reason a woman should like to have children, she can have both.
(4) I dispute the claim that the abortion debate would be over but for the question of women's humanity. Although a minority of pro-lifers might be motivated to oppose abortion due to a belief that women should be baby-machines, very few of them actually argue for laws against abortion based on that idea; if this were the only argument pro-lifers were making, the debate would have been over a long time ago. So you could say that speaking of "women's humanity being in question" is distracting from the issue of whether or not a fetus is human or not.
(5) Let us assume for the purposes of argument that women are subhuman. Does that mean being a woman is a crime? It does not, any more than being a cat or a dog is a crime.
(6) The reductio ad Thatcherum aside, I reiterate that society has no mouth and therefore cannot say anything. Everything that is said is said by some individual or other; perhaps some of those individuals are claiming to speak for society, but they are not, any more than the President speaks for all Americans. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 17:21, 27 February 2009 (EST)
I don't know if you intentionally misunderstood everything I said or are just so blinded by your rampant individualism that you can't see the forest through the trees. Probably both? Society has been constructed in a way to take human rights away from women. Therefore, society regards women as subhuman. It makes no difference if a fetus is human or not. Again, that distracts from the real point: do women have to give up their bodies to anyone against their will, or do they have control over it? (Note: the former is the basis of rape culture.) I never said "freedom or babies". I said "freedom" or "forced babies, because you are a tool for the patriarchy and nothing more." I've already explained the logic behind "it is a crime to be female", so I'm not going to reiterate it. Same with society. Oh I forgot that there's no such thing as dominant discourse or culture. I forgot we aren't arranged into groups. I forgot that no specific group is in power, and how that specific group doesn't have significant advantages over other, disadvantaged groups. I forgot that there are no disadvantaged groups! I forgot that specific groups don't dictate culture. My mistake! There is no society! So laughable. I laugh at your individualism.
This is over. I gave up arguing with people who didn't understand the finer points of feminism and patriarchy long ago. --81.151.236.108 18:19, 27 February 2009 (EST)
Laugh on, laugh on; no amount of laughing will change the fact of your stated abandonment of this debate. Perhaps I do not understand your position, but you do not understand mine, either; see my remarks above on individualism. Yet I am willing to continue, and you are withdrawing.
(1) My apologies about my mischaracterization of your freedom vs. forced-baby dichotomy; I had assumed that you, like Dworkin, believed that in the phrase "forced babies" the adjective was redundant. This was obviously incorrect.
(2) I still think the question of the fetus being human is very relevant in the abortion case. Let us assume that a certain woman has become pregnant in some way that she could not have expected, and does not want the baby. Let us assume further that if she is prevented from having an abortion, she will, as you say, be giving up her body to another's service.
Now if the fetus is human, there is a choice to be made: disallow the abortion and condemn the woman to servitude, or allow the abortion and condemn the fetus to be murdered, through no possible fault of the fetus's. Those who believe that it is acceptable to murder people in furtherance of human rights have much arguing to do.
(3) I did not say, nor do I believe, that there are no such things as groups or classes or society; there is no need to overgeneralize my statement about things that "society says." Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 02:29, 28 February 2009 (EST)
I'm still laughing. Again, by saying that it's not okay for a woman to assert her bodily sovereignty when something that is arguably human is inside her, then you are saying that a woman is also arguably human. That somehow, a creature whose status is completely unknown has more right to a woman's body than she does. Disgusting. And babies vs. freedom is not a false dichotomy, if you are a woman. And again, I forgot that there is no society. There's no such thing as dominant discourse or anything. Society doesn't have a mouth, because television, literature, art, advertising, politics, etc. don't exist. You really need to brush up on your Feminist theory. --81.151.236.108 08:06, 28 February 2009 (EST)
(1) My fetus argument was made under two assumptions, which I stated: firstly, that the mother is a person with bodily sovereignty, and secondly, that the fetus is also a person. The fetus's being a person is a case that has to be considered, since you think the question of the fetus's personhood irrelevant.
The mother's body is not exactly the only body involved there; the fetus has a body as well, and if the fetus is a person then by your own arguments it has certain rights to its own body, such as the right not to have it ground up and chucked out with the trash. If you believe that the fetus's right not to be killed in this manner is trumped by the mother's right to bodily sovereignty, then you believe that murder is acceptable in upholding the latter right. Although this position may by some stretch of the imagination be logically consistent, you will have considerable difficulty convincing most other people of the merits of these ideas, if you believe that.
(2) "babies vs. freedom is not a false dichotomy" — it is such for women who want to have them; indeed, to deprive these women of their children is a violation of their freedom, as Lucy Stone remarked in the case of slave women who had their children taken away.
(3) I have now placed in bold type my above response to your continued ravings about my "society" remarks. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 02:30, 1 March 2009 (EST)
So another "person" (we would have a long argument over what 'personhood' requires, but for the sake of argument I'll bite) has more right to a woman's body than herself. Got it. So, should we have forced organ donation as well? Should a woman give up all of her other organs in service to other people? Is rape OK too? Just seeing how logically consistent you are here. I'll have some difficulty convincing most other people of the merits of these ideas because most people start from the position that women are sub-human or sub-person. There would be no opposition from so-called "pro life" (I call them anti-woman, which is what they are) groups if they had any idea of a woman's humanity.
If a woman wants to have a child she is voluntarily giving up her freedom. Who said I was "depriving women of their children"? I was merely pointing out the lifelong no-pay, no-thanks drudgery that it is to be a housewife with no public voice or public respect. And if she's a working mother, well then she has two jobs.
And I still consider your society remarks to be amazingly shortsighted. Still laughing, by the way. --81.151.236.108 07:03, 1 March 2009 (EST)
<DISCLAIMER>I do not believe fetuses to be human.</DISCLAIMER> So, hang on... A woman's decision as to what happens to her body is more important than allowing another human to live? Wisest time Hoover! 08:59, 1 March 2009 (EST)
Surprisingly, yes. I honestly don't see why this is such a radical idea. --81.151.236.108 09:35, 1 March 2009 (EST)
Because you think that your ideals are more important than the life of a human being? Which do you think is the higher cost: a woman having a child, at great inconvenience, or that fetus being killed, at arguably infinite cost? If you really think that the woman comes out worse in the first scenario than the fetus does in the second, you really need to sort out your ethics. Wisest time Hoover! 10:48, 1 March 2009 (EST)
Ditto to everything said below, and, "my ideals" are not what is at stake. It is the humanity of women. Please tell me that someone forced to do something for someone else against their will is not a slave. Tell me that a woman's body is free game if anyone wants to use it for their own benefit against her will. Tell me that in earnest, and at least you will have the benefit of being logically consistent. --81.151.236.108 11:37, 1 March 2009 (EST)
If a child or another human has to use my body to survive, then I and only I must be able to give approval, and it cannot be a one time thing. I must be able to stop giving approval at any time, or I literally become a slave to that other person. I hate when people talk about pregnancy as some mere "inconvenience". I've been pregnant twice. It's not "inconvenient", it's life changing, it's all demanding, it's emotionally overwhelming. I like to talk about the woman who is in the Air Force academy. One stupid night with a fellow junior, and she is faced with losing everything you work for. You cannot be a cadet and be pregnant, it's not allowed. Also, if you leave school for any reason, you cannot come back. Now, if a child is more important than your career, you'll drop out, but if not, that's 3 years of very hard work flushed down the toilet *for every* cause someone else thinks you should act as a womb. A drinker who doesn't want to give up drinking can do serious harm to a fetus. Should she have to give up her drink for a child she doesn't want? 1 in 10,000 women in the US will die due to complications of pregnancy. 1 in 100 will suffer serious long term or permanent damage (heart attacks, strokes, loss of sensation in the lower body, diabetes that was only "supposed" to be gestational, bone density loss, etc), 1 in 1 women will be in serious pain for at least a few hours. It's an "inconvenience" when it's someone else's body. It's not a mere inconvenience when it's your body. — Unsigned, by: WaitingforGodot / talk / contribs

(UNINDENT) (1) "Please tell me that someone forced to do something for someone else against their will is not a slave." I do say this, in the case when not doing the said something results in the death of the said "someone else." Doctors are not slaves on account of being required by law to perform operations to save the lives of emergency-room patients. People are not slaves on account of being required by law to save someone else's life, suffering legal penalties if they do not. And if a fetus is a person, a woman is not a slave on account of being required by law to sustain a fetus's life until it no longer has an absolute dependency upon her.

(2) "Tell me that a woman's body is free game if anyone wants to use it for their own benefit against her will." I am only speaking of the hypothetical rights of a fetus here; no person who has "wants" of that sort is a fetus that is absolutely dependent on the woman for its life, and therefore one can consistently say that a woman's body is not "free game" to such people, while maintaining that the fetus, which has no such wants, has a right to its life.

(3) "I was merely pointing out the lifelong no-pay, no-thanks drudgery that it is to be a housewife..." Your personal disdain for housewifery is: (a) not shared by all women; (b) based on false premises, since many women who perform those tasks have hearty thanks from their families in return.

(4) As your position on abortion is becoming more clear, let me put out some questions.

(a) Suppose you live in an isolated area. One day a woman comes to your door gravely injured, begging a bed to recuperate. She cannot safely be moved to any hospital or any other house, and if she is to survive you will have to feed her and care for her for some months. If for some reason you did not want to do this, would you have the right to blast her brains out with a shotgun?
(b) In pagan Iceland, they had abortion as well: they would wait until winter and then pitch the baby out the window. If this were the best available way to get rid of a baby and save the mother from the fabled misery of motherhood, would it be acceptable to you?

Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 17:52, 1 March 2009 (EST)

Nice. You give two examples which are (a) not comparable to pregnancy and (b) not comparable to abortion. Well done! --Kels 18:45, 1 March 2009 (EST)
Ditto to the above.
So you do believe that people should be forced to donate their organs and blood to the needy. (Being a doctor is a profession that requires the saving of a life; it is not comparable.) How disgustingly honest. So a woman's body is free game to some people, but not to others? You still operate under the assumption that a woman has less rights to her body than others.
I take issue to the idea that I have a personal disdain for housewives. I do not. I am merely pointing out the conditions most housewives face. I think it is horrible that women must face these conditions (domestic slavery) if they choose to have children. Even hearty thanks as you put them does not detract from the tremendous load women have to bear for the sake of the institution of "family".
As for your hypothetical and not-comparable-to-abortion situation, no, I would not find it acceptable, as material possessions may be used by anyone. However, if a woman came to me and by some method attached herself to my organs in order to sustain her own life, and my body and future was thus compromised by this intruder, then yes I would cut her off. Even if that removal caused her death.
No, they didn't have abortions in pagan Iceland. Abortions are the termination of a pregnancy. (I like your snide remark disparaging all mothers' struggles everywhere, by the way, very chauvinistic and dismissive). And no, it would not be acceptable to me as anyone may take care of a born child. Should they raise that child willingly? Absolutely. You cannot force anyone to adopt a child. Similarly, you should not be able to force a woman to bear a child. Your implication that a 12 week old fetus is comparable to a born, independent baby is very humorous. --Astrophilia 19:01, 1 March 2009 (EST) (Yes, I made an account.)

Old branch of the thread

Godot, I pretty much agree with you--somewhere above, a long tiome ago, I made a comment about how feminism has moved beyond a lot of what Dworkin wrote about, but this doesn't make her interventions any less crucial. And I think that people who pile on her do so sometimes because they want her to be more "objective"--which was not at all her goal. TheoryOfPractice 11:56, 27 February 2009 (EST)
Anyone who reads philo of any kind realizes that philosophy (and religious writing, and probably political writings) are creations of their time. I love reading de Beauvoir, her french is just delicious, but what was offensive and groundbreaking in the 1930s, is today so common and understood, that most girls reading her today go... "um, and this is a good philosopher, why? She's just stating the obvious" Dworkin asks of men and women, is there something implicit in the act of being the penitrator vs., the penitratee that makes the sexual act a power play? and if so, what must the social repercussions be, and how do you change that? I'd be curious to talk with a gay male able this, who can (and does?) take on both aspects of the sexual act. Viewing women's sexuality from the eyes of someone who "lives" (as far as teh sexual act) in both worlds - penitrator and penetratee. --Sun mowse.pngEn attendant Godot"To-morrow, when I wake, or think I do, what shall I say of to-day?" 12:04, 27 February 2009 (EST)