Women Recovering Our Clothes

Iris Marion Young

in On Female Body Experience

Published in print January 2005 | ISBN: 9780195161922
Published online September 2006 | e-ISBN: 9780199786664 | DOI:

Series: Studies in Feminist Philosophy

 Women Recovering Our Clothes

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This essay contends that one of the privileges of femininity in rationalized instrumental culture is an aesthetic freedom — the freedom to play with shape and color on the body, don various styles and looks — and through them exhibit and imagine unreal possibilities. Such female imagination has liberating possibilities because it subverts and unsettles the order of respectable, functional rationality in a world where that rationality supports domination. In the context of patriarchal consumer capitalism, however, such liberating aspects of clothing fantasy are intertwined with oppressing moments. This essay asks how women’s pleasure in clothes can be described. It adopts a method derived from Luce Irigaray in an attempt to extricate the liberating and valuable in women’s experience of clothes from the exploitative and oppressive.

Keywords: women; clothes; femininity; freedom; fantasy; oppression; pleasure; Luce Irigaray

Chapter.  5654 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy

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