Feminism and the Body presents classic texts in feminist body studies. Intended for undergraduate and graduate students, the volume touches on the medical history of sexual differences, the political history of the body, the history of clothing and its cultural meanings, symbolic renderings of the body, male bodies, and the body in colonial and cross-cultural contexts.
: This essay offers a short overview of feminist history of science and introduces a new project into that history, namely feminist history of colonial science. My case study focuses on eighteenth-century voyages of scientific discovery and reveals how gender relations in Europe and the colonies honed selective collecting practices. Cultural, economic, and political trends discouraged the transfer from the New World to the Old of abortifacients (widely used by Amerindian and African women in the West Indies).1.
This essay offers a short overview of feminist history of science and introduces a new project into that history, namely feminist history of colonial science. My case study focuses on eighteenth-century voyages of scientific discovery and reveals how gender relations in Europe and the colonies honed selective collecting practices. Cultural, economic, and political trends discouraged the transfer from the New World to the Old of abortifacients.1.
In early modern science, the struggle between feminine and masculine allegories of science was played out within fixed parameters. Whether science itself was to be considered masculine or feminine, there never was serious debate about the gender of nature, one the one hand, or of the scientist, on the other. From ancient to modern times, nature—the object of scientific study—has been conceived as unquestionably female.5 At the same time, it is abundantly clear that the practitioners of science, scientists, themselves, overwhelmingly (...) have been men.But what about science? What gender was it—as an activity and set of ideals—to have? In one tradition the answer was clear: science was a woman. This tradition, stretching back at least to Boethius’ sixth-century portrayal of Philosophy as a woman, was codified and explained in Cesare Ripa’s Iconologia, the Renaissance bible of iconography.6 In this work, Ripa portrayed each of the sciences as a woman. “Scientia”—knowledge or skill—was portrayed as a woman of serious demeanor, wearing stately robes . “Physica”—physical science—was a goddess with a terrestrial globe at her feet. Geometry was a woman holding a plumb line and compass. Astrology, too, was a woman, dressed in blue, with a crown of stars and wings signifying the elevation of her thoughts to the distant stars. With a compass in her right hand and the celestial sphere in her left, she studied the movement and symmetry of the skies. 5. See Carolyn Merchant, The Death of Nature: Women, Ecology, and the Scientific Revolution .6. Boethius describes female Philosophy as she appeared to him in a dream in his De consolatione philosophiae. See also Cesare Ripa, Iconologia , first illustrated in 1603. LondaSchiebinger is an assistant professor of history at Pennsylvania State University. Her book, “The Mind has no Sex”: Women in the Origins of Modern Science, will be published next spring. (shrink)
For twenty years, the renowned philosopher of science Sandra Harding has argued that science and technology studies, postcolonial studies, and feminist critique must inform one another. In The Postcolonial Science and Technology Studies Reader, Harding puts those fields in critical conversation, assembling the anthology that she has long wanted for classroom use. In classic and recent essays, international scholars from a range of disciplines think through a broad array of science and technology philosophies and practices. The contributors reevaluate conventional accounts (...) of the West’s scientific and technological projects in the past and present, rethink the strengths and limitations of non-Western societies’ knowledge traditions, and assess the legacies of colonialism and imperialism. The collection concludes with forward-looking essays, which explore strategies for cultivating new visions of a multicultural, democratic world of sciences and for turning those visions into realities. Feminist science and technology concerns run throughout the reader and are the focus of several essays. Harding provides helpful background for each essay in her introductions to the reader’s four sections. Contributors Helen Appleton Karen Bäckstrand Lucille H. Brockway Stephen B. Brush Judith Carney Committee on Women, Population, and the Environment Arturo Escobar Maria E. Fernandez Ward H. Goodenough Susantha Goonatilake Sandra Harding Steven J. Harris Betsy Hartmann Cori Hayden Catherine L. M. Hill John M. Hobson Peter Mühlhäusler Catherine A. Odora Hoppers Consuelo Quiroz Jenny Reardon Ella Reitsma Ziauddin Sardar Daniel Sarewitz LondaSchiebinger Catherine V. Scott Colin Scott Mary Terrall D. Michael Warren. (shrink)
The Gendered Cyborg brings together material from a variety of disciplines that analyze the relationship between gender and technoscience, and the way that this relationship is represented through ideas, language and visual imagery. The book opens with key feminist articles from the history and philosophy of science. They look at the ways that modern scientific thinking has constructed oppositional dualities such as objectivity/subjectivity, human/machine, nature/science, and male/female, and how these have constrained who can engage in science/technology and how they have (...) limited our ideas of the possibilities for both humanity and science. Later sections contain readings that present key feminist theories about representation to examine how gender and technoscience are represented in areas of particular contemporary interest: the new human reproductive technologies, science fiction, film and the Internet. The readings constantly ask "Is this for women, for human beings?" Contributors: Alison Adam, Anne Balsamo, Lynda K. Bundtzen, Barbara Creed, Mary Ann Doane, Dion Farquhar, Jennifer González, Evelynn M. Hammonds, Donna Haraway, Fiona Hovenden, Luce Irigaray, Linda Janes, Gill Kirkup, Nina Lykke, Sadie Plant, Rosalind Pollack Perchesky, LondaSchiebinger, Vivian Sobchack, Deborah Lynn Steinberg, Nancy Leys Stepan, Nina Wakeford, Kathryn Woodward. (shrink)
For thousands of years, people have used nature to justify their political, moral, and social judgments. Such appeals to the moral authority of nature are still very much with us today, as heated debates over genetically modified organisms and human cloning testify. The Moral Authority of Nature offers a wide-ranging account of how people have used nature to think about what counts as good, beautiful, just, or valuable. The eighteen essays cover a diverse array of topics, including the connection of (...) cosmic and human orders in ancient Greece, medieval notions of sexual disorder, early modern contexts for categorizing individuals and judging acts as "against nature," race and the origin of humans, ecological economics, and radical feminism. The essays also range widely in time and place, from archaic Greece to early twentieth-century China, medieval Europe to contemporary America. Scholars from a wide variety of fields will welcome The Moral Authority of Nature, which provides the first sustained historical survey of its topic. Contributors: Danielle Allen, Joan Cadden, Lorraine Daston, Fa-ti Fan, Eckhardt Fuchs, Valentin Groebner, Abigail J. Lustig, Gregg Mitman, Michelle Murphy, Katharine Park, Matt Price, Robert N. Proctor, Helmut Puff, Robert J. Richards, LondaSchiebinger, Laura Slatkin, Julia Adeney Thomas, Fernando Vidal. (shrink)
For thousands of years, people have used nature to justify their political, moral, and social judgments. Such appeals to the moral authority of nature are still very much with us today, as heated debates over genetically modified organisms and human cloning testify. _The Moral Authority of Nature_ offers a wide-ranging account of how people have used nature to think about what counts as good, beautiful, just, or valuable. The eighteen essays cover a diverse array of topics, including the connection of (...) cosmic and human orders in ancient Greece, medieval notions of sexual disorder, early modern contexts for categorizing individuals and judging acts as "against nature," race and the origin of humans, ecological economics, and radical feminism. The essays also range widely in time and place, from archaic Greece to early twentieth-century China, medieval Europe to contemporary America. Scholars from a wide variety of fields will welcome _The Moral Authority of Nature_, which provides the first sustained historical survey of its topic. Contributors: Danielle Allen, Joan Cadden, Lorraine Daston, Fa-ti Fan, Eckhardt Fuchs, Valentin Groebner, Abigail J. Lustig, Gregg Mitman, Michelle Murphy, Katharine Park, Matt Price, Robert N. Proctor, Helmut Puff, Robert J. Richards, LondaSchiebinger, Laura Slatkin, Julia Adeney Thomas, Fernando Vidal. (shrink)
Based on a wide range of Latin and vernacular sources, this essay reexamines Thomas Laqueur’s and LondaSchiebinger’s influential claim that the idea of incommensurable anatomical difference between the sexes was “invented” in the eighteenth century, reflecting, in particular, a need to resort to nature in order to justify female subordination against new ideals of equality and universal rights. It provides ample evidence that already around 1600 many leading physicians, rather than proclaiming a “one‐sex model” of female inferiority, (...) insisted on the unique and purposeful features of the female skeleton and the female genital organs and illustrated them visually. The author shares Laqueur’s and Schiebinger’s assumption that the shift toward incommensurable anatomical difference helped legitimize woman’s subordinate position as housewife and mother as naturally given. But around 1600 Enlightenment ideals as yet played no role. Instead, this shift reflected, in particular, contemporary physicians’ growing appreciation of personal discovery and innovation, the rise of a specialist gynecology, and new views on marriage and motherhood in the upper classes among whom the physicians lived and whose support they sought. (shrink)
Table of Contents I. WHO ARE THE SCIENTISTS? Historically. Women in the Origins of Modern Science, LondaSchiebinger. Women of Third World Descent in the Sciences, Sandra Harding. Recently. Women in Science: Half In Half Out, Vivian Gornick.”How Can a Little Girl Like You Teach a Great Big Class of Men?’ the Chairman Said, and Other Adventures of a Woman in Science, Naomi Weisstein. The Anomaly of a Woman in Physics, Evelyn Fox Keller. Currently. Women Join the Ranks (...) of Science but Remain Invisible at the Top, Natalie Angier. Creeping Toward Inclusivity in Science, Phyllis Goldberg. II. WHAT KIND OF ENTERPRISE IS SCIENCE? Science’s Aims, Methods, and Norms of Behavior. Patriarchy, Scientists, and Nuclear Warriors, Brian Easlea. Culturally Inclusive Chemistry, Catherine Hurt Middlecamp. A World of Difference, Evelyn Fox Keller. Interviewing Women: A Contradiction in Terms, Ann Oakley. Science’s Subject Matter. Have Only Men Evolved?, Ruth Hubbard. Empathy, Polyandry, and the Myth of the Coy Female, Sarah Blaffer Hrdy. The Importance of Feminist Critique for Contemporary Cell Biology, The Biology and Gender Study Group. The Engendering of Archaeology: Refiguring Feminist Science Studies, Alison Wylie. Still Seeking Transformation: Feminist Challenges to Psychology, Sue Wilkinson. Science’s Social Effects. Androcentric Bias in Clinical Research, Sue Rosser. Man-Made Medicine and Women’s Health, Nancy Krieger and Elizabeth Fee. The New Procreative Technologies, Ruth Hubbard. A Question of Genius: Are Men Really Smarter Than Women?, Anne Fausto-Sterling. III. WHAT KIND OF ENTERPRISE OUGHT SCIENCE TO BE? Feminist Empiricism. Subjects, Power, and Knowledge: Description and Prescription in Feminist Philosophies of Science, Helen Longino. Epistemological Communities, Lynn Hankinson Nelson. Feminist Standpoint Theory. ”Strong Objectivity’: A Response to the New Objectivity Question, Sandra Harding. Introduction to Tomorrow’s Tomorrow: The Black Woman, Joyce Ladner. Feminist Postmodernism. Situated Knowledges: The Science Question in Feminism and the Privilege of Partial Perspective, Donna Haraway. Though This Be Method, Yet There Is Madness in It: Paranoia and Liberal Epistemology, Naomi Scheman. (shrink)
Johann Friedrich Blumenbach has been called ‘The Father of Physical Anthropology’ because of his pioneering publications describing human racial variation. He proposed a racial typology consisting of five ‘major varieties/races’ of humanity. Since the 1990s, LondaSchiebinger and other Anglophone scholars have argued that Blumenbach’s writings on race show evidence that he was significantly influenced by nineteenth-century race supremacist beliefs which held Europeans/caucasians to be the highest ranked and most beautiful race. However, these modern authors relied largely on (...) Thomas Bendyshe’s 1865 English translations of Blumenbach’s Latin and German texts. As documented herein, Bendyshe’s publication includes numerous translation errors which form a pattern indicating that he employed two translators. The first translator was consistent with five earlier English translations. The second translator was not consistent with the earlier translators. This second translator also used English terms that denigrated extra-Europeans while adulating Europeans. Furthermore, Bendyshe’s1865 translation regularly used the term ‘beauty’ to translate different Latin words that Blumenbach used to express his nuanced view of aesthetics and structural symmetry. Given the inconsistency and errors in Bendyshe’s 1865 translations, they should not be unquestionably accepted as an accurate reflection of Blumenbach’s views. (shrink)
El análisis de los sesgos de género en ciencia ha dado lugar a una revisión crítica del conocimiento científico y a un cuestionamiento en profundidad del modelo de ciencia existente. Lo que, a su vez, da paso al interés por investigar en torno a las claves epistémicas que harían posible una ciencia no sexista, racista o clasista, fraguando un debate epistemológico de gran alcance.Las pretensiones de estas epistemologías son, principalmente, mostrar que los valores contextuales, es decir, los considerados no cognitivos, (...) influyen en la ciencia, en las metáforas científicas, el lenguaje utilizado, los procesos y métodos de investigación, y en los conocimientos. En esta comunicación se abordará principalmente el tema de la Ciencia Sostenible como alternativa a la denominada ciencia tradicional, y también como disyuntiva a la denominada ciencia feminista. Las posturas que confluyen son las de tres autoras: D. Haraway, S. Harding y LondaSchiebinger. Las cuales, en conjunto, dan lugar a una actividad práctica en ciencia, además de a una forma de mirar diferente, que intenta elaborar propuestas novedosas para la mejora del quehacer científico. (shrink)
I explore some of the ways that assumptions about the nature of substance shape metaphysical debates about the structure of Reality. Assumptions about the priority of substance play a role in an argument for monism, are embedded in certain pluralist metaphysical treatments of laws of nature, and are central to discussions of substantivalism and relationalism. I will then argue that we should reject such assumptions and collapse the categorical distinction between substance and property.
Alan Millar's paper (2011) involves two parts, which I address in order, first taking up the issues concerning the goal of inquiry, and then the issues surrounding the appeal to reflective knowledge. I argue that the upshot of the considerations Millar raises count in favour of a more important role in value-driven epistemology for the notion of understanding and for the notion of epistemic justification, rather than for the notions of knowledge and reflective knowledge.
Translation is a subject that can never be spoken of sufficiently, especially at a time when exchanges and conflicts between cultures are intensifying with globalization. Starting from the possibility of translation, this article does not reflect upon the old question of the opposition between the fidelity and freedom of the translator, or the theories of foreignization and domestication, but rather focuses on the role of the translator in the relations of otherness. In the face of indetermination, we seek, through the (...) example of the translation of a word ‘honor’, full of historical and cultural connotations in the French language, to prove that grasping meaning is fundamental in order to produce a good translation. In order for that, the translator should be a linguist to grasp meaning and significance in the vast semantic fields, then be a scientist who knows how to reappropriate the conceptual tools proposed by other social sciences. These two roles guarantee the understanding and the demonstration of the otherness, which can only come from a systematic structuring of the culture of departure. (shrink)
When people speak of ‘the law of the jungle’, they usually mean unions restrained and ruthless competition, with everyone out solely for his own advantage. But the phrase was coined by Rudyard Kipling, in The Second Jungle Book , and he meant something very different. His law of the jungle is a law that wolves in a pack are supposed to obey. His poem says that ‘the strength of the Pack is the Wolf, and the strength of the Wolf is (...) the Pack’, and it states the basic principles of social co-operation. Its provisions are a judicious mixture of individualism and collectivism, prescribing graduated and qualified rights for fathers of families, mothers with cubs, and young wolves, which constitute an elementary system of welfare services. Of course, Kipling meant his poem to give moral instruction to human children, but he probably thought it was at least roughly correct as a description of the social behaviour of wolves and other wild animals. Was he right, or is the natural world the scene of unrestrained competition, of an individualistic struggle for existence? (shrink)