sexual objectification

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Raja Halwani wonders is sexual desire objectifying, and hence morally wrong? Halwani discusses Kant, who "implicitly acknowledged the unusual power of sexual urges and their capacity to divert us from doing what is right:"

He claimed that sex was particularly morally condemnable, because lust focuses on the body, not the agency, of those we sexually desire, and so reduces them to mere things. It makes us see the objects of our longing as just that ¬- objects. In so doing, we see them as mere tools for our own satisfaction.

"Sex doesn't just make you objectify your partner," Halwani continues, "It also makes you objectify yourself:"

When I am in the grip of sexual desire, I also allow another person to reduce me to my body, to use me as a tool. Kant saw this process of self-objectification as an equally, if not more, serious moral problem than objectification directed outwards. I have duties to others to promote their happiness, but I also have a duty to morally perfect myself. Allowing myself to be objectified opposes this precept, according to Kant.

Halwani concludes, "I agree with Kant that sexual desire and objectification are inseparable, and a force that morality must reckon with."

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This page contains a single entry by cognitivedissident published on December 9, 2016 7:35 AM.

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