chapter  10
5 Pages

Conclusion

Necessity and the power of love

This conclusion presents some closing thoughts on the key concepts covered in the preceding chapters of this book. The book offers a theorization of why and how, in contemporary societies characterized by formal-legal equality and women's relative economic independence from individual men, women continue to be subordinated to men through sexuality, defined broadly so as to include women and men's practices as both desiring-ecstatic and loving-caring beings. It examines different feminist ways of understanding how gendered power is constituted through sexuality, with specific focus on the explicit or implicit ontologies of sexuality, power and sex/gender endorsed. The book provides a critical realist critique of some problematic features of poststructuralist reasoning that have come to dominate feminist theory. It addresses the taboo on the category 'women', offering a critical realist understanding of this category that is compatible with complexity and social constructionism. The book also explains the implications of the dialectical social ontology for how one should conceive of feminist change.