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Unreasonable Men by Victor J. Seidler

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Chapter 6

Identity

REASON AND IDENTITY

With modernity we have learned to think of ourselves as rational selves. This has helped to cast our experience in a particular light and has helped to shape prevailing traditions of philosophy and social theory. It has meant that our freedom supposedly lies in the goals and ends that we discern for ourselves through reason alone. As our reason is supposedly the source of our individuality, so it is also the source of our freedom.

This is shaped in masculine terms to the extent that it involves a denial of our needs. As men, we learn to take pride in not having any needs, especially emotional needs. It is ‘others’ who have needs that we have to be ready to support. Part of us continues to feel that others ...

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