Ethics of Ambiguity, The

Simone de Beauvoir, The Ethics of Ambiguity: De Beauvoir explores the implications of a central political tension: as existential agents, we each freely set our own goals; as ethical agents, we must harmonize these goals with other people and institutions that often impede their realization. This natural tension in political life becomes a crisis, however, when an identifiable group is demonized and systematically oppressed. De Beauvoir had in mind colonized Africans, but her account applies directly to African Americans killed by police. No one will tolerate intimidation and domination indefinitely. Inevitably, the oppressed will stake everything on liberation. Risks to health and safety taken by BLM protestors exemplify her message that there can be no social harmony without freedom for everyone. [Jeff Noonan, University of Windsor]

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