Starting from oneself

„Starting from oneself” has evolved as a practice within the feminist movement. This practice is a way of questioning the theory that the tangible and the living must bow to the „universal,” the „superordinate”, and the „neutral.” Neither am I in fact able to „start from the position of someone else”,—for instance by presuming that they have the same ideas, interests or a similar way of being in the world as I do – , nor do I live up to a specific situation with my actions if I only „apply” a theory.

Starting from oneself means prioritizing my own experiences and taking seriously what motivates and touches me. This is an individual but not an individualistic practice. Inevitably I will have to negotiate, while acting, with others who confront me with the world and the inherent resistance of reality. Besides, all humans are part of reality and carry that reality inside themselves. When people change, so does reality. 

„ … one is not to be found”—this is, how Italian philosopher Luisa Muraro finishes the sentence beginning with „starting from oneself.” Not to allow yourself to be found means to leave the safety of an identity. If relatedness becomes my foundation, I am not forced to stick to a fixed identity.

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