What's Love Got to Do With It?
Susan A. Bandes
DePaul University - College of Law
William and Mary Journal of Women and the Law, Vol. 8, No. 97, 2001
The language of legal theory tends not to welcome or even acknowledge the influence of emotional variables. There exists an established discourse about values, which discusses, for example, the value of autonomy to the way we live our lives. But discussion of love, fear, dependency, intimacy and other emotions which bear on the way we live our lives is not an acceptable part of this discourse. Feminist jurisprudence offers a rich literature on these emotions, their relevance to notions of autonomy, and their impact on the sorts of autonomy women value. However, the insights of this literature are generally cordoned off from mainstream legal thought. The article considers why concepts like autonomy are considered an appropriate subject for mainstream legal discourse, while concepts like love and dependency remain marginalized, and raises questions about the costs of this marginalization.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 15Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: May 15, 2002
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