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Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity - Study Guide Chapter 2, Prohibition, Psychoanalysis, and the Production of the Heterosexual Matrix, Section V, Reformulating Prohibition as Power Summary & Analysis

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Butler is guided partly by Foucault's critique of foundationalism and to psychoanalysis. She then draws similarities between them and Marcuse's discussion of the effects of sublimation on the psyche. She argues that we cannot understand sexuality as prior to moral and cultural law. Rubin mistakenly holds a separation between sex and gender which presumes a sharp ontological understanding of these ideas, despite claiming a broad range of sexual possibilities. Rubin wants to overthrow the law as well and be replaced by a lack of gender disparity. Foucault has some worries about this idea however because it suggests a story that relies too much on repression. Laws are not mere causes of repression; they are the...

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