New Book of Interest: “Enacting Pleasure: Artists and Writers Respond to Carol Gilligan’s New Map of Love”

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From the FLP mailbox, this announcement of a new edited volume by Peggy Cooper Davis and Lizzy Cooper Davis:

Enacting Pleasure: Artists and Writers Respond to Carol Gilligan’s New Map of Love

Carol Gilligan’s feminist psychology has been the subject of much controversy, but of too little serious examination and critique.

Peggy Cooper Davis and Lizzy Cooper Davis are African American feminist scholars, one in law and the other in anthropology and African American studies.  Lizzy Cooper Davis is also a performing artist.

In Enacting Pleasure they present the reactions of a refreshingly diverse range of artists and scholars to Gilligan’s relational psychology – the evolving notion that

 a healthy human psyche is one that enacts,

rather than suppresses,

the pleasure and utility of interconnection.

Edward Tronick and Michael Tomasello speak to the biological and psychological foundations of human interconnection.

 Robin D. G. Kelley links relational psychology to a politics of love, and David Richards and Peggy Cooper Davis honor it as a basis for democratic theory.

Toni Morrison and Carmen Gillespie associate relational psychology with marginalized women’s quest for self-love, while Peggy Cooper Davis interrogates Gilligan’s celebrations of interracial love.

Kendall Thomas sees Gilligan’s work as limited by heteronormativity, while Kenji Yoshino sees it as a foundation for sexual liberation.

Ruby Blondell and Simon Goldhill speak to the moral implications of Gilligan’s rejection of patriarchal norms.

Others examine Gilligan’s research methods, her relationship to Freudian psychology, her interpretations of elite and post-colonial literature, and her literary style.

Kristin Linklater sings of relational psychology’s eroticism.

Enacting Pleasure is a respectfully serious and probing analysis of Gilligan’s intellectual and literary contributions to feminist thought.  It is an important multicultural and multidisciplinary resource for those who teach or write about human psychology, gender, race, sexuality, and cultural or artistic criticism.

 -Bridget Crawford


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