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(Admittedly, the claim that women are disadvantaged with respect to rights and respect is not a "purely descriptive" claim since it plausibly involves an evaluative component.
Entries covered under the rubric "Feminism, topics" concern philosophical issues that arise as feminists articulate accounts of sexism, critique sexist social and cultural practices, and develop alternative visions of a just world.
In short, they are philosophical topics that arise within feminism.
Feminists disagree about what sexism consists in, and what exactly ought to be done about it; they disagree about what it means to be a woman or a man and what social and political implications gender has or should have.
Nonetheless, motivated by the quest for social justice, feminist inquiry provides a wide range of perspectives on social, cultural, and political phenomena.
In many of its forms, feminism seems to involve at least two claims, one normative and the other descriptive.
The normative claim concerns how women ought (or ought not) to be viewed and treated and draws on a background conception of justice or broad moral position; the descriptive claim concerns how women are, as a matter of fact, viewed and treated, alleging that they are not being treated in accordance with the standards of justice or morality invoked in the normative claim.Together the two claims provide reasons for working to change the way things are; hence, feminism is not just an intellectual but also a political movement.So, for example, a Liberal approach of the kind already mentioned might define feminism (rather simplistically here) in terms of two claims: On this account, that women and men ought to have equal rights and respect is the normative claim; and that women are denied equal rights and respect functions here as the descriptive claim.My goal here will be to sketch some of the central uses of the term that are most relevant to those interested in contemporary feminist philosophy.For an overview of the history of feminist thought see: "Feminism, history of".Although most feminists would probably agree that there is some sense of "rights" on which achieving equal rights for women is a necessary condition for feminism to succeed, most would also argue that this would not be sufficient.This is because women's oppression under male domination rarely if ever consists solely in depriving women of political and legal "rights", but also extends into the structure of our society and the content of our culture, and permeates our consciousness (e.g., Bartky 1990).This acknowledges that commitment to and advocacy for women's rights has not been confined to the Women's Liberation Movement in the West.But this too raises controversy, for it frames feminism within a broadly Liberal approach to political and economic life.) , and what sorts of injustice women in fact suffer (what aspects of women's current situation are harmful or unjust? Disagreements between feminists and non-feminists can also occur with respect to both the normative and descriptive claims, e.g., some non-feminists agree with feminists on the ways women ought to be viewed and treated, but don't see any problem with the way things currently are.Others disagree about the background moral or political views.