ERIC Number: ED371376
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1994-Mar
Logic and Feminist Argument: Yet Again, Can the Master's Tools Dismantle the Master's House?
Lamb, Catherine E.
If "logic" is defined as a means to create good reasons for accepting clear and unambiguous conclusions, then feminist instructors of composition should use it not only to dismantle traditional male notions of combative discussion, but also to build their own paradigms based on an acceptance of difference. Those feminists such as Sally Gearhart, Joyce Trebilcot, or Andrea Nye who shun logic altogether, maintaining that "any intent to persuade is an act of violence," will often employ logic in their own arguments; furthermore, they are not above attack in their own right. If those in feminist composition are to move ahead in engaging difference for the ultimate goal of an enriched concept of community, they must look at the tools available to them in ways that are not deterministic. They need also to recognize and draw on what is shared with the work of others such as Kenneth Burke. Janice Moulton, among others, has looked for alternatives to the adversarial method in philosophical argument, suggesting that reasoning be used in the context of larger systems of ideas and that experience be allowed as a necessary element of some reasoning processes. An introduction to women's studies class at Albion College used discussion to employ logic in such a manner as to work through differences while still respecting them. When in one class meeting a student indicated that she thought homosexuality was an "abomination," a productive discussion ensued. (Contains 17 references.) (TB)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A