Download PDF by Iddo Landau: Is Philosophy Androcentric?

By Iddo Landau

ISBN-10: 0271029064

ISBN-13: 9780271029061

ISBN-10: 0271029072

ISBN-13: 9780271029078

The various most famed figures of Western philosophy have held perspectives approximately girls which are disparaging or worse. Aristotle, for instance, held girls to be much less rational than males and other halves to be inferior to their husbands; Locke concept that males, as ''the abler and the stronger'' of the sexes, must have the ultimate in disagreements among husbands and other halves. Kant felt that ladies can't be voters and Hegel believed that they need to now not be fascinated about political opinions. Schopenhauer and Nietzsche have been infamous for his or her misogynistic rantings. in addition to those specific statements approximately women's secondary prestige and shortcomings, philosophical texts utilize quite a few dualisms (reason/emotion, mind/body, public/private, objective/subjective, etc) which were claimed to categorize girls in disadvantageous methods. those are between many positive factors of Western mainstream philosophy that feminist critics (some dubbing it ''malestream'') have emphasised as facts of its thoroughgoing androcentricity.

How a lot fact is there to this declare? And is philosophy so thoroughly contaminated through androcentricity that it has to be rejected altogether or notably reformed? those are the demanding situations that Iddo Landau confronts in this booklet. His is the main complete research of those accusations. through isolating out varieties of the argument charging philosophy with androcentricity, he seeks to figure out what validity they've got and even if they justify seeing philosophy as both pervasively or nonpervasively androcentric.

He concludes that not one of the arguments for viewing philosophy as pervasively androcentric finally face up to rational scrutiny, whereas those that express it to be nonpervasively androcentric don't undermine it within the approach that many critics have intended: ''philosophy emerges, in virtually all of its elements, as human instead of male, and so much elements and features of it needn't be rejected or rewritten.''

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Some of her claims are quite decisively worded. Thus, she writes that ‘‘the Cartesian theory of rationality, by sanctifying science, philosophy and mathematics, removed them further from the reach of women. And even after all these centuries, the odour of sanctity still clings’’ (‘‘Women and the High Priests of Reason,’’ 13). Moreover, ‘‘Cartesianism does not, as far as women are concerned, have much of a potential to liberate’’ (12). On the other hand, at the end of her paper she presents things less decisively, as questions: ‘‘Has the monopoly over the ‘high’ disciplines, held for so long by an elite group of men, affected their direction or content?

This, together with other arguments cited by Louden and others, suggests that Kant thinks that women are 22. Herman, ‘‘Kant on Sex and Marriage,’’ 50. 23. Kant, ‘‘On the Common Saying,’’ 78. 24. Kant, The Doctrine of Right, The Metaphysics of Morals, trans. Mary Gregor (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996), sec. 46. 25. Kant’s Impure Ethics, 82–87, 101–6. 26. Beobachtungen u¨ber das Gefu¨hl des Scho¨nen und Erhabenen, Academy Edition, 2:232, translated and cited in Louden, Kant’s Impure Ethics, 105.

Tuana, for example, adds to previous accounts that Cartesianism encourages us to be intellectually active. However, women have traditionally been associated with passivity. Woman and the History of Philosophy, 41. Associations, Stereotypes, and Social Practices 35 it is clear that what we have in the history of philosophical thought is no mere succession of surface misogynist attitudes, which can now be shed, while leaving intact the deeper structures of our ideals of Reason. There is more at stake than the fact that past philosophers believed there to be flaws in female character.

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Is Philosophy Androcentric? by Iddo Landau

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