On the Celibate Life Freely Chosen, or Life Without Commitments

in A Woman Who Defends All the Persons of Her Sex

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print May 2010 | ISBN: 9780226779201
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226779232 | DOI:
On the Celibate Life Freely Chosen, or Life Without Commitments

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In On the Celibate Life Freely Chosen, or Life without Commitments, Gabrielle Suchon aims to demonstrate the orthodoxy of the neutral life, specifically proposing a third way for women who aspire to lead an intellectual life, which they cannot do either in marriage or in the cloister. Whereas the Treatise on Ethics and Politics is devoted to the tragic consequences of women's deprivation of freedom, knowledge, and authority, On the Celibate Life promotes what Suchon calls a “life without commitments.” Suchon construes celibacy freely chosen in terms of the ideal of Neutrality or Neutralism using many of the arguments of Jesuit Nicolas Caussin, and, moreover, recommends friendship as an antidote to sadness caused by loneliness. This chapter presents an English translation of On the Celibate Life.

Keywords: Celibate Life; Gabrielle Suchon; friendship; women; neutral life; intellectual life; life without commitments; Nicolas Caussin; celibacy; Neutralism

Chapter.  31745 words. 

Subjects: Feminist Philosophy

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