Acknowledged as one of the most influential thinkers of modern times, an understanding of Judith Butler's work is ever more essential to an understanding of not just the landscape of cultural and critical theory, but of the world around us. Understanding Judith Butler, however, can be perceived as a complex and difficult undertaking.
It needn't be. Using contemporary and topical examples from the media, popular culture and everyday life, this lively and accessible introduction shows how the issues, concepts, and theories in Butler's work function as socio-cultural practices.
Giving due consideration to Butler's earlier and most recent work, and showing how her ideas on subjectivity, gender, sexuality and language overlap and interrelate, this book gives a better understanding not only of Butler's work, but of its applications to modern-day social and cultural practices and contexts.
Chapter 5: Ethics
In Giving an Account of Oneself, Butler engages with the work of Adorno, Foucault, Laplanche and Levinas, amongst others, in order to consider ‘how it might be possible to pose the question of moral philosophy’ (2005: 1). What she means by this expression, and what might be at stake in such an inquiry, is to be sought in the conjunction of the ideas, examples, arguments, positions and theories she includes in the discussion, on the one hand; and the socio-cultural climate and politics of the post-September 11 world, and the political issues (the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, media and academic censorship, the Gulf War) at the centre of Precarious Life (2006) and Frames of War (2009), on the other. In this context, giving an account of ...