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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter January 26, 2021

To Each Incel According to His Needs?

  • Ondřej Beran ORCID logo EMAIL logo
From the journal SATS


This text presents an analysis of some aspects of the phenomenon of so-called incels. It focuses on the sexist and male supremacist ideology inherent to the incels’ narrative. It also follows a link between this ideology and the assumptions made by some commentators on the incels’ problem, who have been relying on a mixture of conservative views on society and reductionist naturalism. I present a critique of these background assumptions, relating to concepts that feature centrally in them. First, I criticise the characterisation of a particular (simplistic and anachronistic) concept of ‘monogamy’ as natural and its possible construal as normative. Then I explore the rhetoric of sex as a ‘basic need’, pointing out the tendency to mistake what one wants for a ‘need’. I conclude by criticising the particular kind of idea of the science of human nature that underpin the reductionist accounts of sex-related violence.

Corresponding author: Ondřej Beran, Centre for Ethics, Department of Philosophy, Univerzita Pardubice, Stavařov 97, Pardubice, 53210, Czech Republic, E-mail:


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Published Online: 2021-01-26
Published in Print: 2021-11-25

© 2021 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston

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