The Woman of Reason

The Woman of Reason : Feminism, Humanism and Political Thought

4.33 (3 ratings by Goodreads)
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This is a timely re-appraisal of feminist political thinkers and their male contemporaries, providing a re-evaluation of feminist humanism.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 224 pages
  • 158 x 228 x 12mm | 332g
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0745614493
  • 9780745614496

Back cover copy

This important and timely book challenges the direction taken bymuch recent work in the field of feminist studies. It mounts apowerful defence of humanism - a tradition of which manycontemporary feminists have been sharply critical.

Many feminists have viewed 'reason' and 'rationality' with deepsuspicion. They have argued that reason was constructed by malephilosophers in a way that excluded feminine traits: the man ofreason was a masculine fiction.

But this rejection of humanism assumes that there is only onetradition of humanism and only one conception of the rationalindividual. By carefully re-examining the texts of a feministhumanist tradition, Karen Green uncovers a different conception ofthe rational individual - a 'female version of rationality'. Shecaptures the specificity of women's thought through a carefulexamination of their writings and their differences from the workof their male contemporaries.

On this basis, Green argues that we need to reconceptualize bothrationality and liberalism. Maintaining the ideal of rationality isquite compatible with understanding ourselves as embodied, emotional creatures whose sense of self is made up of a mixture ofreason and feeling. Feminist humanism can provide a firm basis forpolitical action and a compelling defence of equal politicalrepresentation for women and men.
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Table of contents

1. Against Feminist Anti-Humanism.
2. Women of Virtue.
3. Hobbes, Amazons and Sabine Women.
4. Virtuous Women and the Citizen of Geneva.
5. The Female Citizen.
6. Socialism, Sex and Savage Society.
7. Flight from the Other.
8. Reason, Femininity, Love and Morality.
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Review quote

'The Woman of Reason is an imaginative and compellingcommentary on the origins and role of feminism in contributing to amore egalitarian and caring world. This clear-headed, humane andcontroversial book deserves consideration and discussion byeveryone concerned with the ways in which forms of knowledge cancontribute to the oppression or the liberation of people, women inparticular.'
UCG Women's Studies Centre Review 'The insistence on women's history and their participation inthe construction of culture and society is a welcome antidote toaccounts of universal oppression.' Women's PhilosophyReview

'The book stands as a provocative contribution to liberalfeminist political theory, which is likely to generate ongoingdebate.' Australasian Journal of Philosophy
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About Karen Green

Karen Green is a lecturer in Philosophy at Monash University, Australia.
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Rating details

3 ratings
4.33 out of 5 stars
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4 0% (0)
3 33% (1)
2 0% (0)
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