Gender and Justice in Multicultural Liberal States

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OUP Oxford, Nov 30, 2006 - Philosophy - 265 pages
Gender and Justice in Multicultural Liberal States explores the challenges that culturally plural liberal states face when they hold competing political commitments to cultural rights and sexual equality, and advances an argument for resolving such dilemmas through democratic dialogue and negotiation. Exploring recent examples of gendered cultural conflicts in South Africa, Canada, and Britain, this book shows that there is an urgent need for workable strategies to mediatethe antagonisms between the cultural practices and arrangements of certain ethno-cultural and religious groups and the norms and constitutional rights endorsed by liberal states. Yet such strategies will be successful only insofar as they can resolve conflicts without either reinforcing women's subordinationwithin cultural communities or unjustly dismissing calls for cultural recognition and forms of self-governance. To this end, the book develops an approach to mediating cultural tensions that takes seriously the demands of justice by cultural and religious minorities in liberal democratic states. Grounded in an argument for democratic legitimacy, this approach invokes norms of political inclusion and democratic dialogue, and highlights negotiation and compromise as the best vehicles forarriving at resolutions to conflicts of cultural value. However, it also reconceives the basis of democratic legitimacy so as to include not merely formal expressions of political consent, but also a range of non-formal democratic activity that occur in the private and social spheres, from acts of culturalreinvention and subversion to outright expressions of dissent and cultural refusal.

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Contents

Liberal Approaches to Conflicts of Culture
23
Womens Rights as Human Rights
54
Empowering Cultural Communities
89
Copyright

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About the author (2006)


Monique Deveaux is Associate Professor of Political Science at Williams College, where she teaches courses in contemporary political theory and the history of political thought. She is the author of Cultural Pluralism and Dilemmas of Justice (Cornell University Press, 2000), a co-editor of Sexual/Cultural Justice: Critical Perspectives in Political Theory and Practice (forthcoming, Routledge), and author of articles on topics ranging from cultural toleration to feminist moral theory in such journals as Political Theory, Social and Theory and Practice, and Political Studies. Deveaux is a recipient of a residential fellowship at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard (2001-2) and a National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Stipend (2001). She holds a Ph.D. from University of Cambridge.

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