In this important new book, a follow up to The Way of Love
, Luce Irigaray, one of France's most influential contemporary theorists, turns once again to the concept of otherness.
We are accustomed to considering the other as an individual without paying sufficient attention to the particular world or specific culture to which the other belongs. A phenomenological approach to this question offers some help, notably through Heidegger's analyses of "Dasein", "being-in-the-world" and "being with'. Nevertheless, according to Heidegger, it remains almost impossible to identify an other outside of our own world. "Otherness" is subjected to the same values by which we are ourselves defined and thus we remain in "sameness'. In this age of multiculturalism and in the light of Nietzsche's criticism of our values and Heidegger's deconstruction of our interpretation of truth, Irigaray questions the validity of the "sameness" that sits at the root of Western culture.