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Subjectivity refers to a subject's perspective, particularly feelings, beliefs, and desires. It is often used casually to refer to unjustified personal opinions, in contrast to knowledge and justified belief. In philosophy, the term is often contrasted with objectivity.
Subjectivity may refer to the specific discerning interpretations of any aspect of experiences. They are unique to the person experiencing them, the qualia that are only available to that person's consciousness. Though the causes of experience are thought to be objective and available to everyone, (such as the wavelength of a specific beam of light), experiences themselves are only available to the subject (the quality of the colour itself).
In social sciences, subjectivity (the property of being a subject) is an effect of relations of power. Similar social configurations create similar perceptions, experiences and interpretations of the world. For example, female subjectivity would refer to the perceptions, experiences and interpretations that a subject marked as female would generally have of the world.
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- ^ Solomon, Robert C. "Subjectivity," in Honderich, Ted. Oxford Companion to Philosophy, Oxford University Press, 2005.
- Block, Ned; Flanagan, Owen J.; & Gzeldere, Gven (Eds.) The Nature of Consciousness: Philosophical Debates. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
- Bowie, Andrew (1990). Aesthetics and Subjectivity : From Kant to Nietzsche. Manchester: Manchester University Press.
- Dallmayr, Winfried Reinhard (1981). Twilight of Subjectivity: Contributions to a Post-Individualist Theory Politics. Amherst, MA: University of Massachusetts Press.
- Ellis, C. & Flaherty, M. (1992). Investigating Subjectivity. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.
- Farrell, Frank B. Farrell (1994). Subjectivity, Realism, and Postmodernism: The Recovery of the World in Recent Philosophy. Cambridge - New York: Cambridge University Press.