Faculty Scholarly Dissemination Grants


Social Constructionism, the Female Subject and the Clash Regime


Honors College


Brooks College of Interdisciplinary Studies




The post-9/11 world has seen an increase in the use of the rhetoric of the clash of civilizations, or the idea that civilizations are engaged in inevitable ideological clashes. Specifically, this clash rhetoric has been utilized to frame discussions about women in Muslim societies and express concern for their highlighted oppressions. This newfound concern for womens rights on the part of Western citizens and governments has been called Orientalist Feminism (Ho, 2010). Although the clash regime has been critiqued vehemently and masterfully, this discourse still maintains its power, and its more recent manifestation as concern for Muslim women serves to further reinforce the perception of the civilized West verses the barbaric East. Furthermore, its continual inscription both culturally and through centers of power allows it to claim quasi-objective validity. This paper applies Sally Haslangers discussion of the social construction of race as a form of Lockean nominal essence to the rhetoric of the clash regime. Doing so allows for a feminist response to better recognize the mechanisms of its inscriptions in political discourse and popular culture.

Conference Name

Philosophy, Knowledge and Feminist Practices

Conference Location

Madrid, Spain

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