By Louise du Toit
This publication bargains a serious feminist point of view at the broadly debated subject of transitional justice and forgiveness. Louise Du Toit examines the phenomenon of rape with a feminist philosophical discourse bearing on women’s or ‘feminine’ subjectivity and selfhood. She demonstrates how the hierarchical dichotomy of male lively as opposed to woman passive sexuality – which obscures the real nature of rape – is embedded within the dominant western symbolic body. via a Hegelian and phenomenological examining of first-person debts through rape sufferers, she excavates an realizing of rape that still begins to open up a fashion out of the denial and destruction of lady sexual subjectivity.
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Extra resources for A Philosophical Investigation of Rape: The Making and Unmaking of the Feminine Self
My critique of these models in the fi rst section includes a critique of current mainstream rape law, which seems to perpetuate the property model in some respects. ’ looks at the distinction Susan Estrich (1987) has drawn between ‘simple’ and ‘aggravated’ rape. Although the study she drew on might be dated to some extent (1966), if we look at rape verdicts, rape victims’ experiences and fictional accounts of rape, it seems as if this distinction is still prevalent in people’s thinking about rape.
Also my fuller discussion in Du Toit, 2007a: 60) is that it makes it seem as if a man can logically engage in intercourse with a woman, by force or threat of force, against her will and with her consent! Or, he could logically force intercourse with both her will and consent. , it must be proven by the state that he could not mistakenly have presumed that consent was in fact given) implies in effect that the woman must be able to show that, not only was consent withheld, the intercourse was unambiguously forbidden or resisted.
Rape (whether it occurs in war or not) is one such an absolute crime, even if Derrida does not explicitly link rape and absolute victimization. Rape is a form of absolute crime because it murders the subject-self of the person against whom the crime is committed. Rape is precisely a way of removing ‘that freedom, that force and that power which Authorises [and] which permits the accession to the position of the “I forgive,” (58–59) as I will show in more detail later on. Victims of rape typically cannot even access the position of the ‘I accuse’, let alone the position of the ‘I forgive’.