Sartre argues that we are metaphysically free. That is, our interior freedom is untouched by the everyday world--it is a necessary truth of human existence. (a) How does Sartre’s idea of consciousness fit into his argument regarding human freedom? (b) What is ‘bad faith,’ and how does it oppose our authenticity? (c) Ultimately, does Sartre think that our freedom means we can just ‘do whatever we want’?
Existentialists argue that we have the freedom to create our own essences. Where or how does this meet Wade and Holmstrom’s social constructionist theories? (a) Explain the Sartrean idea of self creation of the individual (existence precedes essence). (b) Explain the social constructionist account, drawing from Wade or Holmstrom, of social creation of the individual (social ideas of race and gender, embodied realities). (c) Does the social constructionist account reintroduce a notion of essence? Do we have freedom, as individuals, to change or confront that essence at all?
Wade argues that while race is socially constructed, it is also real. (a) How is it socially constructed? (b) What about it is real? (c) In light of this constructed, but real, notion of race, Wade finally articulates what his view of human nature is. Explain it.
Holmstrom argues that “natures should be understood as underlying structures that explain a range of behavior.” (a) How does she explain the ways in which men and women have been thought to have different natures? (b) How does she argue that gendered natures are social? c) Is her view that human nature is social all the way down? Why/Why not?
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