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THEMES OF ISOLATION IN SASKATCHEWAN RADIO DRAMA - page 81 / 185

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Bodyscape: Isolation, Health, and the Woman’s Voice

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care. Writing from a background in psychology, Gilligan calls for a necessary shift of

thought within philosophy and social theory. Gilligan stresses the importance of

changing the voice of discourse from the divisions of patriarchy, built on disconnection

and self betterment, to a more unifying, relational approach to discourse. Gilligan

argues that “on a theoretical and political level, on a personal and psychological level,

this change in voice seemed essential. The existing paradigm was patriarchal; it was

built upon a disconnection from women which became part of the psychology of

women and men” (121).

Gilligan is very specific when defining the difference between a feminine ethic

of care and a feminist ethic of care. The feminine ethic, to Gilligan, is defined by self-

sacrifice and relationships. It is

an ethic of the relational world as that world appears within a patriarchal social order: that is, as a world apart, separated politically and psychologically from a realm of individual autonomy and freedom which is the realm of justice and contractual obligation. (122)

This feminine ethic of care, Gillian argues, is distinct from the feminist ethic of care,

which is defined by relational interaction, because

A feminist ethic of care begins with connection, theorized as primary and seen as fundamental in human life. People live in connection with one another; human lives are interwoven in a myriad of subtle and not so subtle ways. A feminist ethic of care reveals the disconnections in a feminine ethic of care as problems of relationship. (122)

Such an outlook is different from the problematic, disconnected, paternal notion of the

“separate self” which, according to Gilligan, is represented by

the rational man, acting out of relationship with the inner and outer world. Such autonomy, rather than being the bedrock for solving psychological and moral problems itself becomes the problem, signifying a disconnection from emotions and a blindness to

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