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"The Right to Be Lonely"

"The Right to Be Lonely" it as any romanticization of loneliness—which must, if episodically or without acknowledgement, be everyone’s common fate.) Still, this “right to be lonely” may serve to interrogate the diction of belonging. For do we unequivocally want this social inclusion? Certainly we may want to speak for equality, but in doing so, to steer clear of its now usual accompaniment of a treacly talk of belonging, spiritual recognition, community. Can it be avoided? Probably not. Does any rhetorical “we” (like the use I make of it now) rely on it? Yes. But the impulse to inclusion also runs a circuit of envy in all agitation about who and what is in, and who and what is not. With such jealousy, any drive for greater social inclusion is as driven as any society gossip column—while one unhappy byproduct of striving for enlarged acceptability is to push the resulting residue of everyone else further into the backwoods of an unspeakable deviancy. This, ironically, is a concomitant of promoting new family forms. No one is to blame for it. It is pragmatically necessary to fight for what is sometimes termed the “legitimation” of unorthodox lives; yet this may be best done in the http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png differences: A Journal of Feminist Cultural Studies Duke University Press

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Publisher
Duke University Press
Copyright
Copyright 2002 by Brown University and differences: A Journal of Feminist Cultural Studies
ISSN
1040-7391
eISSN
1527-1986
DOI
10.1215/10407391-13-1-1
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

it as any romanticization of loneliness—which must, if episodically or without acknowledgement, be everyone’s common fate.) Still, this “right to be lonely” may serve to interrogate the diction of belonging. For do we unequivocally want this social inclusion? Certainly we may want to speak for equality, but in doing so, to steer clear of its now usual accompaniment of a treacly talk of belonging, spiritual recognition, community. Can it be avoided? Probably not. Does any rhetorical “we” (like the use I make of it now) rely on it? Yes. But the impulse to inclusion also runs a circuit of envy in all agitation about who and what is in, and who and what is not. With such jealousy, any drive for greater social inclusion is as driven as any society gossip column—while one unhappy byproduct of striving for enlarged acceptability is to push the resulting residue of everyone else further into the backwoods of an unspeakable deviancy. This, ironically, is a concomitant of promoting new family forms. No one is to blame for it. It is pragmatically necessary to fight for what is sometimes termed the “legitimation” of unorthodox lives; yet this may be best done in the

Journal

differences: A Journal of Feminist Cultural StudiesDuke University Press

Published: Jan 1, 2002

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