This new collection of essays by leading feminist critics highlights the fresh perspectives that feminism can offer to the discussion of past philosophers. Rather than defining itself through opposition to a "male" philosophical tradition, feminist philosophy emerges not only as an exciting new contribution to the history of philosophy, but also as a source of cultural self-understanding in the present.
Feminist work in the history of philosophy has come of age as an innovative field in the history of philosophy. This volume marks that accomplishment with original essays by leading feminist scholars who ask basic questions: What is distinctive of feminist work in the history of philosophy? Is there a method that is distinctive of feminist historical work? How can women philosophers be meaningfully included in the history of the discipline? Who counts (...) as a philosopher? This collection is a unique collaboration among philosophers from North America and the Nordic Countries, including papers written from both analytic and continental philosophical perspectives and discussing both ancient and modern philosophers. Feminist Reflections on the History of Philosophy will be of interest to historians of philosophy, feminist theorists, women's studies faculty and students, and humanists interested in canon formation and transformation. (shrink)
Feministtheory is a central strand of cultural studies. This book explores the history of feminist cultural studies from the early work of Mary Wollstonecraft, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Virginia Woolf, Simone de Beauvoir, through the 1970s Women's Liberation Movement. It also provides a comprehensive introduction to the contemporary key approaches, theories and debates of feministtheory within cultural studies, offering a major re-mapping of the field. It will be an essential text for students taking (...) courses within both cultural studies and women's studies departments. (shrink)
Feminist Political Theory provides both a wide-ranging history of western feminist thought and a lucid analysis of contemporary debates. It offers an accessible and thought-provoking account of complex theories, which it relates to 'real-life' issues such as sexual violence, political representation and the family. This timely new edition has been thoroughly updated to incorporate the most recent developments in feminism and feminist scholarship throughout, in particular taking into account the impact of black and postmodern (...) class='Hi'>feminist thought on feminist political theory. (shrink)
This book is a study of post World War II feministtheory from the viewpoint of intellectual history. The key theme is that the social construction of gender has its origins in the feminist theorists of this period. This paradigm is a key foundational element to both second and third wave feminist thought. It will focus on the five key scholars of the period: Komarovsky, de Beauvoir, Mead, Klein and Herschberger. This has been a somewhat (...) overlooked period in the development of feministtheory and philosophy and Tarrant makes a compelling case for it (the fifties) being the turning point in the study of gender. (shrink)
A highly original work in history and theory, this survey considers major themes including identity, class and sexual difference, weaves them into debates on the nature and point of history, and arrives at new ways of doing history that – very unusually – consider non-Western history and feminist approaches. Using wide range of historical and cultural contexts, the study draws extensively on feminist scholarship, both feministhistory and postcolonial feminism.
So what is feminism anyway? Why are all the experts so reluctant to give us a clear definition? Is it possible to make sense of the complex and often contradictory debates? In this concise and accessible introduction to feministtheory, Chris Beasley provides clear explanations of the many types of feminism. She outlines the development of liberal, radical and Marxist//socialist feminism, and reviews the more contemporary influences of psychoanalysis, postmodernism, theories of the body, queer theory, and attends (...) to the ongoing significance of race and ethnicity. Given the diversity of feminist ideas, Chris Beasley a number of ways of looking at feministtheory and offer an open-ended approach which allows for variety and change. What is Feminism? is a clear and up-to-date guide to Western feministtheory for students, their teachers, researchers and anyone else who wants to understand and engage in current feminist debates. `Over the last three decades feminist theories and methodologies have become an increasingly complex as well as somewhat fraught terrain where ideas and egos alternately clash productively and destructively. This is an up-to-date and intelligent introduction to a field which remains a vital component of contemporary sociopolitical issues and debates' - Sneja Gunew, Professor of English and Women’s Studies, University of British Columbia. (shrink)
What makes feministtheoryfeminist? How did so many different feminisms come to exist? In Fundamental Feminism, Judith Grant addresses these questions by offering a critical exploration of the evolution of feministtheory and the state of feminist thinking today. Grant provides a lively assessment of the major problems of contemporary feminist thought and identifies a set of common assumptions that link the wide variety of feminist theories in existence. Fundamental Feminism calls (...) for nothing less than a substantial revision of the core concepts responsible for shaping feministtheory as we now know it. Grant identifies and critiques three core concepts of feministtheory--"woman," "experience," and "personal politics"--from their origins in pamphlets and writings from the early women's liberation movement to their current construction in feminist thought. She then connects a number of major debates in feminism today to the longstanding influence of these core assumptions. These debates include the hegemony of the white female perspective, the tension between anti-pornography and pro-sex feminists, and the discussions surrounding the challenges presented by postmodernism. Grant gives readers valuable insight into the dilemma facing feministtheory today. Fundamental Feminism is a thorough and provocative analysis that will be essential reading for anyone interested in the future of feministtheory and the power of feminist politics. (shrink)
Contemporary feministtheory is at an impasse: the project of reformulating concepts of self and social identity is thwarted by an association between identity and oppression and victimhood. In Sacrificial Logics, Allison Weir proposes a way out of this impasse through a concept of identity which depends on accepting difference. Weir argues that the equation of identity with repression and domination links "relational" feminists like Nancy Chodorow, who equate self-identity with the repression of connection to others, and poststructuralist (...) feminists like Judith Butler, who view any identity as a repression of nonidentity and difference. Through readings of Chodorow, Butler, Jessica Benjamin, Luce Irigaray, Jacqueline Rose and Julia Kristeva, Weir analyzes the relation of theories of self-identity to theories of women's identity, social identity, the identity of meaning in language and feminist solidarity. Drawing particularly on the work of Julia Kristeva, she argues for a reformulation of self-identity as a capacity to participate in a social world, and sketches a model of a self-identity which depends on a capacity to accept nonidentity, difference and connections to others. (shrink)
Power is clearly a crucial concept for feministtheory. Insofar as feminists are interested in analyzing power, it is because they have an interest in understanding, critiquing, and ultimately challenging the multiple array of unjust power relations affecting women in contemporary Western societies, including sexism, racism, heterosexism, and class oppression.In The Power of FeministTheory, Amy Allen diagnoses the inadequacies of previous feminist conceptions of power, and draws on the work of a diverse group of (...) theorists of power, including Michel Foucault, Judith Butler, and Hannah Arendt, in order to construct a new feminist conception of power. The conception of power developed in this book enables readers to theorize domination, resistance, and solidarity, and, perhaps more importantly, to do so in a way that illuminates the interrelatedness of these three modalities of power. (shrink)
Reading feministtheory as a complex imaginative achievement, Feminist Imagination considers feminist commitment through the interrogation of its philosophical, political and affective connections with the past, and especially with the `race' trials of the twentieth century. The book looks at: the 'directionlessness' of contemporary feminist thought; the question of essentialism and embodiment; the racial tensions in the work of Simone de Beauvoir; the totalitarian character in Hannah Arendt; the 'mimetic Jew' and the concept of mimesis (...) in the work of Judith Butler. Vikki Bell provides a compelling rethinking of feministtheory as bound up with attempts to understand oppression outside a focus on 'women'. She affirms feminism as a site and mode of making these connections. What emerges is a profound work brimming with insight that will be required reading for anyone who is seriously interested in feministtheory and, more generally, contemporary social theory. (shrink)
This authoritative and lively exploration of the theories of contemporary feminism covers all the major variants of feminist political thought from the "traditional" schools of the women's movement-particularly radical, liberal, and socialist-to today's postmodern texts. FeministTheory Today examines the epistemological challenge from critical legal theory and postmodernist thought; the divergences within, as well as between, feminist schools; and the protests from women marginalized by the feminist movement, including those who are lesbian and those (...) who are black. It also interrogates the dialectic equality and difference and reconceptualizes this pervasive tenet of feminist thought. Author Judith Evans documents the changes in socialist feminism from its revolutionary origins to its current focus on modifying liberal democratic forms. Students and teachers of women's studies, sociology, and political theory will find this an authoritative and lively exploration of the theories of contemporary feminism. It is also essential reading for anyone seeking to understand why the women's movement is as it is today. (shrink)
This volume collects many of the major essays of feministtheory of the past forty years. The essays included here are those which have made key contributions to feministtheory during this period and which have generated extensive discussion. The volume organizes these essays historically, so as to provide a sense of the major turning points in feministtheory. Beginning with those essays which have provoked widespread discussion in the early days of the second (...) wave, the volume then presents essays which have been central to major discussions since that time. The essays present the complex relationship between feminism and Marxism, the second wave's "gynocentric turn," the theoretical elaboration of differences among women, and the essentialist debate, as these have occupied the attention of feminist theorists. Through this collection, the reader is able to gain a sense of the diverse directions feministtheory has taken over the past forty years, where feministtheory stands at the moment, and the questions which are just now beginning to emerge. (shrink)
Introduction -- By way of nomadism -- Context and generations -- Sexual difference theory -- On the female feminist subject : from "she-self" to "she-other" -- Sexual difference as a nomadic political project -- Organs without bodies -- Images without imagination -- Mothers, monsters, and machines -- Discontinuous becomings : Deleuze and the becoming-woman of philosophy -- Envy and ingratitude: men in feminism -- Conclusion. Geometries of passion : a conversation.
From the historical roots of second-wave feminism to current debates about feministtheory and politics. This introduction to Anglo-American feminist thought provides a critical and panoramic survey of dominant trends in feminism since 1968. Feminism is too often considered a monolithic movement, consisting of an enormous range of women and ideologies, with both similar and different perspectives and approaches. The book is divided into two parts, the first of which takes a close look at the most influential (...) strands of feminism: liberal feminism, Marxist/socialist feminism, radical feminism, lesbian feminism, and black feminism. In later chapters, Whelehan ties these complexities of, and conflicts within, feminism. The role and relationship of men to feminism, and feminism's often thorny relationship to postmodernism, are also the subject of chapter length treatment. Concluding with a provocative discussion of the much-heralded advent of post-feminism and the rise of the new feminist superstars such as Camille Paglia, Naomi Wolf, Susan Faludi, and Katie Roiphe, Modern Feminist thought is an ideal text for students and a book no feminist teacher or activist should be without. (shrink)
In Political Theory and Feminist Social Criticism, Brooke Ackerly demonstrates the shortcomings of contemporary deliberative democratic theory, relativism and essentialism for guiding the practice of social criticism in the real, imperfect world. Drawing theoretical implications from the activism of Third World feminists who help bring to public audiences the voices of women silenced by coercion, Brooke Ackerly provides a practicable model of social criticism. She argues that feminist critics have managed to achieve in practice what other (...) theorists do only incompletely in theory. Complemented by Third World feminist social criticism, deliberative democratic theory becomes critical theory - actionable, coherent, and self-reflective. While a complement to democratic theory, Third World feminist social criticism also addresses the problem in feministtheory associated with attempts to deal with identity politics. Third World feminist social criticism thus takes feministtheory beyond the critical impasse of the tension between anti-relativist and anti-essentialist feministtheory. (shrink)
In the past decade the central principles of western feministtheory have been dramatically challenged. many feminists have endorsed post-structuralism's rejection of essentialist theoretical categories, and have added a powerful gender dimension to contemporary critiques of modernity. Earlier 'women' have been radically undermined, and newer concerns with 'difference', 'identity', and 'power' have emerged. Destabilizing Theory explores these developments in a set of specially commissioned essays by feminist theorists. Does this change amount to a real shift within (...)feministtheory, or will feminism's links with an emancipatory modernism reinstate an older political agenda? Can we transcend the common counterposition of equality and difference, or is feminism condemned to argue within the terms of this binary opposition? (shrink)
Once seen as synonymous with "anti-feminism" postfeminism is now understood as the theoretical meeting ground between feminism and anti-foundationalist movements such as postmodernism, post-structuralism and post-colonialsm. In this clear exposition of some of the major debates, theorists and practitioners, Ann Brooks shows how feminism is being redefined for the twenty first century. Individual chapters look at postfeminism in relation to feminist epistemology, Foucault, psychoanalytic theory and semiology, postmodernism and postcolonialism, cultural politics, popular culture, film and media, and sexuality (...) and identity. For all students looking for guidance through the sometimes murky waters of contemporary feministtheory, this book will provide a reassuring first port of call. (shrink)
Feminist scholars have been remaking the landscape in political theory, and in this important book some of the most important feminist political theorists provide reconstructions of those concepts most central to the tradition of political philosophy. The goal is nothing less than the construction of a blueprint for a positive feministtheory.Many of these papers are completely new; others are extensions of important earlier work; two are reprints of classic papers. The result is a progress (...) report on the continuing feminist project to re-envision traditional political theory. As such, it constitutes essential reading not only for feminist thinkers but also for traditional philosophers and political theorists, who will need to come to terms with these contemporary critiques and re-readings. (shrink)
This book evaluates the major debates around which the discipline of international relations has developed in the light of contemporary feminist theories. The three debates (realist versus idealist, scientific versus traditional, modernist versus postmodernist) have been subject to feminist theorising since the earliest days of known feminist activities, with the current emphasis on feminist, empiricist standpoint and postmodernist ways of knowing. Christine Sylvester shows how feminist theorising could have affected our understanding of international relations had (...) it been included in the three debates. She elaborates a feminist method of empathetically cooperative conversation which challenges the identity politics of IR, and illustrates that method with reference to the Greenham Common Women's Peace Camp and the efforts of Zimbabwean women to negotiate international funding for their local producer cooperatives. (shrink)
This glossary is both an introduction to the key words of feminist critical theories and a guide to their origins. Acknowledging the variety of contemporary feminist theories, the glossary includes entries on black, post-colonial, Italian, and French feminisms, and draws on a wide range of fields including semiotics, psychoanalysis, structuralism, poststructuralism, and deconstruction.
Yielding Gender explores and reconsiders the tensions that deconstruction poses for feminist philosophy. Emphasizing the important role of deconstruction in revealing the ambiguity and unstable nature of gender, Penelope Deutscher asks the crucial question: does the very instability of gender mean that we can no longer talk of a man or a woman of reason in the history of philosophy? Using the work of Judith Butler, Jacques Derrida and Luce Irigaray, Deutscher explores this question by examining the issue (...) of gender as "trouble", deconstruction and feminist criticism of the history of philosophy. She then considers and challenges feminist interpretations of some key figures in the history of philosophy. Deutscher sketches how Rousseau, St. Augustine and Simone de Beauvoir have described gender and argues that their readings of gender are in fact empowered by gender's own contradiction and instability rather than limited by it. (shrink)
In the mid-1970s and early 1980s, several feminist theorists began developing alternatives to the traditional methods of scientific research. The result was a new theory, now recognized as Standpoint Theory, which caused heated debate and radically altered the way research is conducted. The Feminist Standpoint Theory Reader is the first anthology to collect the most important essays on the subject as well as more recent works that bring the topic up-to-date. Leading feminist scholar and (...) one of the founders of Standpoint Theory, Sandra Harding brings together the a prestigious list of scholars--Dorothy Smith, Donna Haraway, Patricia Hill Collins, Nancy Hartsock and Hilary Rose--to not only showcase the most influential essays on the topic but to also highlight subsequent developments of these approaches from a wide variety of disciplines and intellectual and political positions. The Reader will be essential reading for feminist scholars. (shrink)
Differences That Matter challenges existing ways of theorising the relationship between feminism and postmodernism which ask 'is or should feminism be modern or postmodern?' Sara Ahmed suggests that postmodernism has been allowed to dictate feminist debates and calls instead for feminist theorists to speak (back) to postmodernism, rather than simply speak on (their relationship to) it. Such a 'speaking back' involves a refusal to position postmodernism as a generalisable condition of the world and requires closer readings of what (...) postmodernism is actually 'doing' in a variety of disciplinary contexts. Sara Ahmed hence examines constructions of postmodernism in relation to rights, ethics, subjectivity, authorship, meta-fiction and film. (shrink)
As has been noted by Alvin Goldman, there are some very interesting similarities between his Veritistic Social Epistemology (VSE) and Sandra Harding's Feminist Standpoint Theory (FST). In the present paper, it is argued that these similarities are so significant as to motivate an incorporation of FST into VSE, considering that (i) a substantial common ground can be found; (ii) the claims that go beyond this common ground are logically compatible; and (iii) the generality of VSE not only does (...) justice to the inclusive ambition of FST, but even solves a well-discussed problem for the latter. (shrink)
This dissertation is an analysis of the development of dialectic and argumentation theory in post-classical Islamic intellectual history. The central concerns of the thesis are; treatises on the theoretical understanding of the concept of dialectic and argumentation theory, and how, in practice, the concept of dialectic, as expressed in the Greek classical tradition, was received and used by five communities in the Islamic intellectual camp. It shows how dialectic as an argumentative discourse diffused into five communities (theologicians, (...) poets, grammarians, philosophers and jurists) and how these local dialectics that the individual communities developed fused into a single system to form a general argumentation theory (adab al-bahth) applicable to all fields. I evaluate a treatise by Shams al-Din Samarqandi (d.702/1302), the founder of this general theory, and the treatises that were written after him as a result of his work. I concentrate specifically on work by 'Ad}ud al-Din al-Iji (d.756/1355), Sayyid Sharif al-Jurjani (d.816/1413), Taşköprüzâde (d.968/1561), Saçaklızâde (d.1150/1737) and Gelenbevî (d.1205/1791) and analyze how each writer (from Samarqandi to Gelenbevî) altered the shape of argumentative discourse and how later intellectuals in the post-classical Islamic world responded to that discourse bequeathed by their predecessors. What is striking about the period that this dissertation investigates (from 1300-1800) is the persistence of what could be called the linguistic turn in argumentation theory. After a centuries-long run, the jadal-based dialectic of the classical period was displaced by a new argumentation theory, which was dominantly linguistic in character. This linguistic turn in argumentation dates from the final quarter of the fourteenth century in Iji's impressively prescient work on 'ilm al-wad'. This idea, which finally surfaced in the post-classical period, that argumentation is about definition and that, therefore, defining is the business of language—even perhaps, that language is the only available medium for understanding and being understood—affected the way that argumentation theory was processed throughout most of the period in question.The argumentative discourse that started with Ibn al-Rawandi in the third/ninth century left a permanent imprint on Islamic intellectual history, which was then full of concepts, terminology and objectives from this discourse up until the late nineteenth century. From this perspective, Islamic intellectual history can be read as the tension between two languages: the "language of dialectic" (jadal) and the "language of demonstration" (burhan), each of which refer not only to a significant feature of that history, but also to a feature that could dramatically alter the interpretation of that history. (shrink)
Jean van Heijenoort was best known for his editorial work in the history of mathematical logic. I survey his contributions to model-theoretic proof theory, and in particular to the falsifiability tree method. This work of van Heijenoort’s is not widely known, and much of it remains unpublished. A complete list of van Heijenoort’s unpublished writings on tableaux methods and related work in proof theory is appended.
A book of tremendous influence when it first appeared, A Mind of One's Own reminded readers that the tradition of Western philosophy-- in particular, the ideals of reason and objectivity-- has come down to us from white males, nearly all of whom are demonstrably sexist, even misogynist. In this second edition, the original authors continue to ask, What are the implications of this fact for contemporary feminists working within this tradition? The second edition pursues this question about the value of (...) reason and objectivity in new directions using the fresh perspectives and diverse viewpoints of the new generation of feminist philosophers. A Mind of One's Own is essential reading and an essential reference for philosophers and for all scholars and students concerned about the nature of knowledge and our pursuit of it. (shrink)
This set reprints a wide range of key articles exploring the role of feminists in the development of post-Enlightenment thought. Including groundbreaking work from the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, with pieces by Sandra Harding, Julia Kristeva, Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, Elizabeth Spelman, and other internationally-esteemed scholars, the collection features an original introduction and comprehensive index, making this an invaluable resource for women's studies students in a wide range of subject areas. For a full listing of contents, visit www.routledge-ny.com and type the (...) isbn into the search engine. (shrink)
This important text introduces students to both feminism and other social and political theories via an examination of the inter-relationship between different feminist positions and key contemporary debates. The book takes each debate in turn, outlines the main themes, discusses different feminist responses and evaluates the implications for real-life political and social issues. This user-friendly structure effectively redraws the map of contemporary feminist thought, offering a fresh and succinct summary of an extensive range of material and graphically (...) demonstrating the ongoing relevance and value of a feminist perspective. (shrink)
What can psychoanalysis offer contemporary arguments in the fields of Feminism, Queer Theory and Post-Colonialism? Jan Campbell introduces and analyses the way that psychoanalysis has developed and made problematic models of subjectivity linked to issues of sexuality, ethnicity, gender, and history. Via discussions of such influential and diverse figures as Lacan, Irigaray, Kristeva, Dollimore, Bhabha, Toni Morrison, and Alice Walker, Campbell uses psychoanalysis as a mediatory tool in a range of debates across the human sciences, while also arguing (...) for a transformation of psychoanalytic theory itself. (shrink)
Jane Duran's Worlds of Knowing begins to fill an enormous gap in the literature of feminist epistemology: a wide-ranging, cross-cultural primer on worldviews and epistemologies of various cultures and their appropriations by indigenous feminist movements in those cultures. It is the much needed epistemological counterpart to work on cross-cultural feminist social and political philosophy. This project is absolutely breath-taking in scope, yet a manageable read for anyone with some background in feministtheory, history, or (...) anthropology. Duran draws many comparisons and connections to Western philosophical and feminist ideas, yet avoids facile or imperialistic over-universalization. Her book is powerful, comprehensive, and brave. It will prove an enormously useful resource for scholars in women's studies, philosophy, anthropology, religious studies, and history. (shrink)
The past twenty years have seen an explosion of work by feminist philosophers and several surveys of this work have documented the richness of the many different ways of doing feminist philosophy. But this major new anthology is the first broad and inclusive selection of the most important work in this field.There are many unanswered questions about the future of feminist philosophy. Which of the many varieties of feminist philosophy will last, and which will fade away? (...) What kinds of accommodations will be possible with mainstream non-feminist philosophy? Which will separate themselves and flourish on their own? To what extent will feminists change the topics philosophers address? To what extent will they change the very way in which philosophy is done?However these questions are answered, it is clear that feminist philosophy is having and will continue to have a major impact on the discipline of philosophy. This volume is the first to allow the scholar, the student, and other interested readers to sample this diverse literature and to ponder these questions for themselves.Organized around nine traditional “types” of feminist philosophy, Feminism and Philosophy is an imaginatively edited volume that will stimulate readers to explore many new pathways to understanding. It marks a defining moment in feminist philosophy, and it will be an essential text for philosophers and for feminist theorists in many other fields. (shrink)
The emergence of queer ideas has unsettled other forms of exploring gender and sexuality, in particular feminism. In response, feminists have been significant critics of queer ideas. This book, through the contribution of important US and UK writers, seeks to explore the debates between feminist and queer theorizing in order to seek out interconnections between the two; they identify new directions in thinking about sexuality and gender that may emerge out of and at the interface.
The history of modern philosophy is a major topic in philosophy and is crucial to an understanding of the advent of feminist philosophy. Feminism and Modern Philosophy introduces fundamental topics in modern philosophy from a feminist perspective. It takes the student through the subject step by step by looking at the main thinkers most usually examined on a course in modern philosophy and by examining the role of gender in studying classic philosophical texts. The book covers the (...) following structure looking at the ideas and work of the important thinkers in this period: * Rereading the canon * The attack on modernist philosophical reason * The nature of "Man" * The search for male allies * Discovering women philosophers * Are there universal philosophical truths? * The function of history within the discipline of philosophy Each chapter looks closely at the way in which the traditional philosophical canon has been re-interpreted by feministtheory and examines the implications for our interpretation of specific texts. It looks at, for example: * A feminist critique of Cartesian rationalism * The implications of Locke's state of nature for the idea of the family * An appreciation of Hume's unique "collaboration" with Annette Baier Chapters close with a summary and the book contains an extensive annotated bibliography. Andrea Nye's style is student friendly and will be ideal for anyone coming to the topic for the first time. It will be appropriate for philosophy as well as gender studies courses looking at the development of modern Western thought. (shrink)
(Series copy) The new Oxford Readings in Feminism series maps the dramatic influence of feministtheory on every branch of academic knowledge. Offering feminist perspectives on disciplines from history to science, each book assembles the most important articles written on its field in the last ten to fifteen years. Old stereotypes are challenged and traditional attitudes upset in these lively-- and sometimes controversial--volumes, all of which are edited by feminists prominent in their particular field. Comprehensive, accessible, (...) and intellectually daring, the Oxford Readings in Feminism series is vital reading for anyone interested in the effects of feminist ideas within the academy. Can science be gender-neutral? In recent years, feminist critics have raised troubling questions about the practice and goals of traditional science, demonstrating the existence of a pervasive bias in the ways in which scientists conduct and discuss their work. This exciting volume gathers seventeen essays--by sociologists, scientists, historians, and philosophers--of seminal significance in the emerging field of feminist science studies. Analyzing topics from the stereotype of the "Man of Reason" to the "romantic" language of reproductive biology, these fascinating essays challenge readers to take a fresh look at the limitations--and possibilities--of scientific knowledge. (shrink)
In the past two decades, feminist scholars have produced an abundance of theoretical writing in humanities and social science disciplines. The result is a body of work that is extraordinarily rich, hard to keep up with, and extremely difficult to teach.With the appearance of Theorizing Feminism: Parallel Trends in the Humanities and Social Sciences, the first genuinely interdisciplinary anthology of significant contributions to feministtheory, teachers will finally have a volume that does justice to their topic. Creatively (...) edited, with insightful introductory material, this timely reader illuminates the historical development of feministtheory as well as the current state of the field.Emphasizing common themes and interests in the humanities and social sciences, the editors have chosen those topics that have been central to feministtheory in many disciplines, that remain relevant to current debates, and that reflect the interests of a diverse community of thinkers.The contributors include leading figures from psychology, literary criticism, sociology, philosophy, anthropology, art history, law, and economics. This is the ideal text for any advanced course on interdisciplinary feministtheory, one that fills a long-standing gap in feminist pedagogy. (shrink)
This latest volume in the Oxford Readings in Feminism series presents the results of the multi-disciplinary feminist exploration of the distinction between public and private. Contributors demonstrate the significance of the distinction in feministtheory, its articulation in the modern and late modern public sphere, and its impact on identity politics within feminism in recent years. Feminism, the Public and the Private offers an essential perspective on feministtheory for students and teachers of women's and (...) gender studies, cultural studies, history, political theory, geography and sociology. (shrink)
In the past three decades, feminist scholars have produced an extraordinary rich body of theoretical writing in humanities and social science disciplines. This revised and updated second edition of Theorizing Feminism: Parallel Trends in the Humanities and Social Sciences, is a genuinely interdisciplinary anthology of significant contributions to feministtheory.This timely reader is creatively edited, and contains insightful introductory material. It illuminates the historical development of feministtheory as well as the current state of the (...) field. Emphasizing common themes and interests in the humanities and social sciences, the editors have chosen topics that remain relevant to current debates, reflect the interests of a diverse community of thinkers, and have been central to feministtheory in many disciplines.The contributors include leading figures from the fields of psychology, literary criticism, sociology, philosophy, anthropology, art history, law, and economics. This is the ideal text for any advanced course on interdisciplinary feministtheory, one that fills a long-standing gap in feminist pedagogy. (shrink)
This paper considers whether eudaimonism is necessarily an idealizing approach to ethics. I argue, contrary to what is implied by Christine Swanton, that it is not, and I suggest that a non-ideal eudaimonistic virtue ethics can be useful for feminist and critical race theorists. For eudaimonist theorists in the Aristotelian tradition, the claim that one should aim to live virtuously assumes that there will typically be good enough background conditions so that an exercise of the virtues, in conjunction with (...) these favorable external conditions, will suffice for someone to flourish both in the sense of living virtuously and in the sense of living well or living the good life. However, under some forms of oppression the background conditions will not be good enough, and thus an exercise of the virtues will often be insufficient to constitute a flourishing life. It may seem that eudaimonism, with its foregrounding of the concept of flourishing and its assumption of a tight connection between living virtuously and living well, may function as a form of ideology that elides the ways in which non-ideal and oppressive conditions can separate virtue from well-being and can make the state of flourishing (in its dual senses) unattainable. I point out that eudaimonism can be revised to incorporate the claim that virtue and flourishing may typically be unlinked, and I advocate retaining flourishing as an unattainable end, exercising the virtues even with a sense of their absurdity, and confronting the existential states of frustration and disappointment that may result. (shrink)
: The history of modern feminist political theories is often framed in terms of the already existing theories of a number of radical nineteenth-century men philosophers such as James Mill, John Stuart Mill, Charles Fourier, Karl Marx, and Friedrich Engels. My argument takes issue with this way of framing feminist political theory by demonstrating that it rests on a derivation that remains squarely within the logic of malestream political theory. Each of these philosophers made use (...) of a particular discursive trope that linked the idea of women's emancipation with the idea of social progress. I argue that this trope reproduced the masculinist signification and symbolism inherent in their particular political philosophies. I argue for a more positive, less masculinist, account of the history of feminist political thought. (shrink)
The most comprehensive collection of its kind, Ethics: History, Theory, and Contemporary Issues, Third Edition, is organized into three parts, providing instructors with flexibility in designing and teaching a variety of courses in moral philosophy. The first part, Historical Sources, moves from classical thought (Plato, Aristotle, Epicurus, and Epictetus) through medieval views (Augustine and Aquinas) to modern theories (Hobbes, Butler, Hume, Kant, Bentham, and Mill), culminating with leading nineteenth- and twentieth-century thinkers (Nietzsche, James, Dewey, Camus, and Sartre). The (...) second part, Modern Ethical Theory, includes many of the most important essays of the past century. The discussion of utilitarianism, Kantianism, egoism, and relativism continues in the work of major contemporary philosophers (Foot, Brandt, Williams, Wolf, and Nagel). Landmark selections (Moore, Prichard, Ross, Ayer, Stevenson, Hare, Baier, Anscombe, Gauthier, and Harman) reflect concern with moral language and the justification of morality. The concepts of justice (Rawls) and rights (Feinberg) are explored, as well as recent views on the importance of virtue ethics (Rachels) and an ethic influenced by feminist concerns (Held). In the third part, Contemporary Moral Problems, the readings present the current debates over abortion, euthanasia, famine relief, animal rights, the death penalty, and whether numbers should play a role in making moral decisions. The third edition expands Part II, Modern Ethical Theory, adding essays by Onora O'Neill, Ruth Barcan Marcus, Allan Gibbard, Nicholas L. Sturgeon, and Martha Nussbaum. Part III, Contemporary Moral Problems, features new essays on abortion by Mary Anne Warren, Don Marquis, and Rosalind Hursthouse; an essay on the death penalty by Stephen Nathanson; and a debate between John M. Taurek and Derek Parfit on when and why one should save from harm a greater rather than a lesser number of people. The book concludes with an essay by Judith Jarvis Thomson on the trolley problem. Wherever possible, each reading is printed in its entirety. (shrink)
Last year the editors of Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society invited feminists worldwide to comment on the millennial transition. Representing a disciplinary and generational range of writers, the resulting collection is at turns inspiring, troubling, provocative, despairing, celebratory. Some of the essays give voice to anxieties, others are more hopeful some reflect back, others look forward. Many of these fifty-plus short essays speak to themes of gender, nationality, global independence, transnational corporate domination, racial and ethnic identities, and (...) complex intersections among these systems. Readers will find eye-opening writing that is thoughtful, committed, and passionate about feminist futures. (shrink)
The path-breaking Encyclopedia of Feminist Theories is an accessible, multidisciplinary insight into the complex field of feminist thought. The Encyclopedia contains over 500 authoritative entries commissioned from an international team of contributors and includes clear, concise and provocative explanations of key themes and ideas. Each entry contains cross references and a bibliographic guide to further reading; over 50 biographical entries provide readers with a sense of how the theories they encounter have developed out of the lives and situations (...) of their authors. Areas covered: * traditional taxonomies of feministtheory (eg socialist thought) * theoretical subdivisions (eg ecofeminism and feminist spirituality) * discipline-specific issues (eg philosophy and anthropology) * the conceptual apparatus of gender theory (eg biologism) * methodologies (eg deconstruction and narrative theory) * intersections (eg with racial theory, queer theory) * political issues (eg citizenship, reproductive rights). (shrink)
This book presents the current feminist critique of science and the philosophy of science in such a way that students of philosophy of science, philosophers, feminist theorists, and scientists will find the material accessible and intellectually rigorous.Contemporary feminist debate, as well as the debate brought on by the radical critics of science, assumes—incorrectly—that certain movements in philosophy of science and science-driven theory are understood in their dynamics as well as in their details. All too often, labels (...) such as “Kuhnian” or “positivistic” are taken for granted, and much of the contemporary postmodern or post-structuralist feministtheory that sets out to criticize science does little to alleviate the reader’s lack of knowledge with regard to such movements.Unlike other texts, Philosophies of Science: Feminist Theories provides a student-oriented framework so that, for example, positivism is given a thorough grounding before the feminist critique of such epistemological theory is given. Other movements discussed include the Kuhnian turn, sociology of science, and the radical critique of science. Feministtheory and critique are interwoven throughout, with one chapter devoted to feminist thought, which includes the work of such thinkers as Longino, Hararway, Hubbard, Nelson, Harding, and Keller. (shrink)
The precondition of any feminist politics – a usable category of ‘woman’ – has proved to be difﬁcult to construct, even proposed to be impossible, given the ‘problem of exclusion’. This is the inevitable exclusion of at least some women, as their lives or experiences do not ﬁt into the necessary and sufﬁcient condition(s) that denotes group membership. In this paper, I propose that the problem of exclusion arises not because of inappropriate category membership criteria, but because of the (...) presumption that categories can only be organised by identity relations or shared properties among their members. This criterion of sameness as well as the characterisation of this exclusion as essentialism attests to a metaphysics that is not conducive to resistance and liberatory projects. Following a strain of hybrid thinking in feminist and post-colonial theory, I outline an alternative pluralist logic that confronts oppressive binaries that impede theory work in gender, sexuality, and race theory, and limit political action and resistance. The problem of exclusion is neither irresolvable nor is it essentialism. Instead it is a denial of subjectivity due to pseudodualistic self/Other dichotomies that can be resisted by adopting a new categorial logic. While this paper focuses on the speciﬁc problem of formulating a category of ‘woman’, it has implications for other areas of gender, critical race, and postcolonial theory. Rather than working toward an inclusive category founded on sameness, theorists need to develop independent and positive categories grounded in difference. Our current categorial logic does not permit such a project, and therefore a new metaphysics must be adopted. (shrink)
In Womanizing Nietzsche, Kelly Oliver uses an analysis of the position of woman in Nietzsche's texts to open onto the larger question of philosophy's relation to the feminine and the maternal. Offering readings from Nietzsche, Derrida, Irigaray, Kristeva, Freud and Lacan, Oliver builds an innovative foundation for an ontology of intersubjective relationships that suggests a new approach to ethics. Oliver argues that while Freud, Nietzsche and Derrida, in particular, attempt to open up philosophy to its other--the unconscious, the body, difference, (...) even the feminine--their attempts depend on closing off the possibility of a specifically feminine other. In this regard, Oliver maintains that none of these theorists have escaped the Hegelian model of intersubjectivity at the level of Lordship and Bondage. She suggests that the recent talk of the death of philosophy is a symptom of the exclusion of woman, the feminine and the maternal. By problematizing and reformulating the traditional philosophical association between the maternal and nature, Oliver presents an alternative model for intersubjectivity and ethics. (shrink)
This paper examines how the new field of neuroethics is responding to the old problem of difference, particularly to those ideas of biological difference emerging from neuroimaging research that purports to further delineate our understanding of sex and/or gender differences in the brain. As the field develops, it is important to ask what is new about neuroethics compared to bioethics in this regard, and whether the concept of difference is being problematized within broader contexts of power and representation. As a (...)feminist science studies scholar trained in the neurosciences, it seems logical to me that, as a growing field, neuroethics should reach out to the rich bodies of scholarship on the history of medicine, feministtheory and feminist bioethics while attempting to approach discussions of sex, gender and sexuality differences in the brain. What is also clear to me is that feminist scholars need to learn how to engage with neuroimaging studies on sex, gender and sexuality not just to critique, but also to productively contribute to neuroscientific research. The field of neuroethics can potentially provide the appropriate forum for this interdisciplinary engagement and create opportunities for shared perplexity. I suggest three possible points of departure for creating this shared perplexity, namely (i) is difference being measured in the study for the purpose of understanding difference in and of itself, or for the purpose of division?; (ii) is there an appreciation for biological complexity?; and (iii) is it assumed that structural differences can be conveniently translated into functional differences? (shrink)
"What is sexist oppression?" "What should be done about it?" Organized around these questions, Theorizing Feminisms: A Reader provides an overview of theoretical feminist writing about the quest for gender justice. Incorporating both classic and cutting-edge material, the reader takes into account the full diversity of women, highlighting the effects of race, ethnicity, nationality, class, sexuality, and religion on women's experience. Theorizing Feminisms is organized into four sections and includes fifty-four essays. The first section introduces several basic concepts commonly (...) employed when thinking about sexism--oppression, social construction, essentialism, intersectionality, gender, race, and class--and also raises questions about the perspective and legitimacy of the theorist. The second section surveys three approaches that attempt to characterize in a general way the source of injustice toward women: humanist feminism ("the sameness approach"), gynocentric feminism ("the difference approach"), and dominance feminism. Offering an alternate perspective, the third section introduces two "localizing" approaches, grounded in postmodernism and identity politics, respectively. Skeptical of theories that attempt to analyze social phenomena across history and culture, authors in this section challenge, rather than answer, the text's organizing questions. The final section explores the relationship of feministtheory to three liberatory projects--postcolonialism, neo-materialism, and queer theory--that do not characterize themselves as feminist, yet take gender as a significant category of analysis. Each section opens with an introduction and each essay is followed by helpful study questions. The majority of the essays are presented in their entirety. Theorizing Feminisms underscores the strong connection between feministtheory and practice by including essays that illustrate important political inspirations or applications of each theoretical approach. It also presents versions of the same approach from various points in history, revealing feministtheory to be dynamic and evolving, rather than static. Ideal for interdisciplinary courses in feministtheory, this volume will also serve as an invaluable reference for current and future generations of theorists. (shrink)
Donna Haraway's work has transformed the fields of cyberculture, feminist studies, and the history of science and technology. Her subjects range from animal dioramas in the American Museum of Natural History to research in transgenic mice, from gender in the laboratory to the nature of the cyborg. Trained as an historian of science, she has produced a series of books and essays that have become essential reading in cultural studies, gender studies, and the history of science. (...) The Haraway Reader brings together a generous selection of Donna Haraway's work. Included is her "Manifesto for Cyborgs," in which she famously wrote that she "would rather be a cyborg than a goddess." Other selections are taken from her three major works, Primate Visions, Modest Witness , and Simians, Cyborgs and Women , as well as some of her more recent writing on animals. For readers in cultural studies, feministtheory, science studies, and cyberculture, Donna Haraway is one of our keenest observers of nature, science, and the social world. This volume is the best introduction to her thought. (shrink)
Spanning nearly two decades, from 1980 to 1996, this Reader investigates the debates which have best characterized feministtheory. Including such articles as Pornography and Fantasy, The Body and Cinema, Nature as Female, and A Manifesto for Cyborgs, the extracts examine thoughts on sexualtiy as a domain of exploration, the visual representation of women, what being a feminist means, and why feminists are increasingly involved in political struggles to negotiate the context and meaning of technological development. With (...) writings by bell hooks, Alice Jardine, and Andrea Dworkin, this mulit-cultural Reader reflects the dynamic nature of feminist debates and the genuine diversity within current feministtheory. Capturing the sense of the rapid movement within feministtheory and criticism, Feminisms is ideal for anyone interested in feminism and the history behind it. (shrink)
This paper argues that Hannah Arendt's political theory offers key insights into the power that binds together the feminist movement - the power of solidarity. Second-wave feminist notions of solidarity were grounded in notions of shared identity; in recent years, as such conceptions of shared identity have come under attack for being exclusionary and repressive, feminists have been urged to give up the idea of solidarity altogether. However, the choice between (repressive) identity and (fragmented) non-identity is a (...) false opposition, and the Arendtian account of solidarity developed here allows us to move beyond this opposition. Thus, Arendt provides us with a model of solidarity that can stand a post-identity politics feministtheory in good stead. Key Words: Hannah Arendt feministtheory identity politics power solidarity. (shrink)
What does Husserlian phenomenology have to offer feministtheory? More specifically, can we find resources within Husserl’s account of the living body ( Leib ) for the critical feminist project of rethinking embodiment beyond the dichotomies not only of mind/body but also of subject/object and activity/passivity? This essay begins by explicating the reasons for feminist hesitation with respect to Husserlian phenomenology. I then explore the resources that Husserl’s phenomenology of touch and his account of sensings hold (...) for feministtheory. My reading of Husserl proceeds by means of a comparison between his description of touch in Ideas II and Merleau-Ponty’s early appropriation of this account in the Phenomenology of Perception, as well as through an unlikely rapprochement between Husserl and Irigaray on the question of touch. Moreover, by revisiting the limitations in Husserl’s approach to the body—limitations of which any feminist appropriation must remain cognizant—I attempt to take Husserl’s phenomenology of touch beyond its initial methodologically solipsistic frame and to ask whether and how it can contribute to thinking gendered and racialized bodies. The phenomenology of touch, I argue, can allow us to understand the interplay between subjective, felt embodiment and social-historical context. In opening up Husserl’s account of touch to other dimensions—intersubjective and affective—sociality is revealed as residing within, and structuring of, touch. Such touch can allow us to think embodiment anew. (shrink)
How to communicate with "the other" who is culturally different from oneself is one of the greatest challenges facing North-South relations. This paper builds on existential-phenomenological and poststructuralist concepts of alterity and difference to strengthen the position of Latina and other subaltern speakers in North-South dialogue. It defends a postcolonial approach to feministtheory as a basis for negotiating culturally differentiated feminist positions in this age of accelerated globalization, migration, and displacement.
This paper explicates Foucault's conception of experience and defends it as an important theoretical resource for feministtheory. It analyzes Linda Alcoff's devastating critique of Foucault's account of sexuality and her reasons for advocating phenomenology as a more viable alternative. I agree with her that a philosophically sophisticated understanding of experience must remain central for feministtheory, but I demonstrate that her critique of Foucault is based on a mistaken view of his philosophical position as well (...) as on a problematic understanding of phenomenology. (shrink)
I show how much psychiatric disability is informed by trauma, marginalization, sexist norms, social inequalities, concepts of irrationality and normalcy, oppositional mind-body dualism, and mainstream moral values. Drawing on feminist discussion of physical disability, I present a feministtheory of psychiatric disability that serves to liberate not only those who are psychiatrically disabled but also the mind and moral consciousness restricted in their ranges of rational possibilities.
: My aim is to develop a feministtheory of value—an axiology—which unites two notions that seem to have little in common for a theorizing whose ultimate goal is justice-driven emancipatory action, namely, the ecological and the aesthetic. In this union lies the potential for a critical feminist political praxis capable of appreciating not only the value of human life, but those relationships upon which human and nonhuman life depend. A vital component of this praxis is, I (...) argue, the potential for an aesthetic experience whose value is exemplified in those actions that tend to foster respect for biodiversity and ecological stability. (shrink)
Creativity: Theory, History, Practice offers important new perspectives on creativity in the light of contemporary critical theory and cultural history. Innovative in approach as well as argument, the book crosses disciplinary boundaries and builds new bridges between the critical and the creative. It is organized in four parts: · Why creativity now? offers much-needed alternatives to both the Romantic stereotype of the creator as individual genius and the tendency of the modern creative industries to treat everything (...) as a commodity. · Defining creativity, creating definitions traces the changing meaning of "create" from religious ideas of divine creation from nothing to advertising notions of concept creation. It also examines the complex history and extraordinary versatility of terms such as imagination, invention, inspiration and originality. · Creation as myth, story, metaphor begins with modern re-telling of early African, American and Australian creation myths and -picking up Biblical and evolutionary accounts along the way - works round to scientific visions of the Big Bang, bubble universes and cosmic soup. · Creative practices, cultural processes is a critical anthology of materials, chosen to promote fresh thinking about everything from changing constructions of "literature" and "design" to artificial intelligence and genetic engineering. Rob Pope takes significant steps forward in the process of rethinking a vexed yet vital concept, all the while encouraging and equipping readers to continue the process in their own creative or "re-creative" ways. Creativity: Theory, History, Practice is invaluable for anyone with a live interest in exploring what creativity has been, is currently, and yet may be. (shrink)