Feminine Sexuality

Andrea Hurst

in Derrida Vis-à-vis Lacan

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print May 2008 | ISBN: 9780823228744
Published online March 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823235179 | DOI:

Series: Perspectives in Continental Philosophy

Feminine Sexuality

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Sexual difference can be viewed in terms of an asymmetrical relation between noncomplementary kinds of jouissance. This chapter considers the question of why both Jacques Derrida and Jacques Lacan persist in labeling these kinds of jouissance “feminine” and “masculine”. As Eugen Fink puts it: “It should be recalled that sexuation is not biological sex: what Lacan calls masculine structure and feminine structure do not have to do with one's biological organs but rather with the kind of jouissance that one is able to obtain”. This chapter agrees with Fink, but demonstrates that there are good political reasons, given the still ubiquitous dominance of patriarchy, to retain these sex-specific designations. Notably, Derrida's reading of Friedrich Nietzsche allows a conception of feminine sexuality to emerge that is quite consonant with what is to be found on this topic in Lacanian discourse.

Keywords: Jacques Lacan; Jacques Derrida; jouissance; Friedrich Nietzsche; feminine; sexuality; patriarchy; masculine; sexual difference

Chapter.  9222 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Language

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