A Philosophical Investigation of Rape
The Making and Unmaking of the Feminine Self
Published February 3rd 2012 by Routledge – 244 pages
This book offers a critical feminist perspective on the widely debated topic of transitional justice and forgiveness. Louise Du Toit examines the phenomenon of rape with a feminist philosophical discourse concerning women’s or ‘feminine’ subjectivity and selfhood. She demonstrates how the hierarchical dichotomy of male active versus female passive sexuality – which obscures the true nature of rape – is embedded in the dominant western symbolic frame. Through a Hegelian and phenomenological reading of first-person accounts by rape victims, she excavates an understanding of rape that also starts to open up a way out of the denial and destruction of female sexual subjectivity.
Introduction. 1. Rape, Forgiveness and Reconciliation 2. The Impossibility of Rape 3. The Possibility of Rape 4. Enigmatic Woman Facilitates Man’s Becoming 5. What if the Object Started to Speak? 6. Towards Female Subjectivity
Louise du Toit is senior lecturer in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Stellenbosch. She has published work in the fields of rape and sexual violence, legal philosophy, and ethnic identity.