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I find this appallingly patronising. Do you?

(31 Posts)

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AMumInScotland Mon 31-Mar-14 14:30:56

Yep. Now that the manly hero has completed his quest to do proper masculine thinking, he's prepared to say 'Of course the little ladies do have a few things that might be worth paying attention to. So long as we incorporate them into our masculine rationality, of course."

And I'm pretty sure most 'heroic quests' were about killing people who thought differently from you, while 'liberating' their valuables and any females they happened to have around...

TheVermiciousKnid Mon 31-Mar-14 14:35:10

Yes, I'll join you in being dramatically (and maybe even grammatically) aghast. What a pile of epistemological poo.

But then again, I'm only a female, so maybe all this questing and conquering and being heroic is just beyond my feeble understanding. hmm

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TheDoctrineOfSnatch Mon 31-Mar-14 17:35:41

Cites not sites - but you knew that grin

What a total nincompoop he is.

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TheDoctrineOfSnatch Mon 31-Mar-14 18:07:30

Ah! Maybe "positions" would be better...

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BarbariansAtTheGates Mon 31-Mar-14 18:13:26

I don't read it like that at all. The review says that it is a history of the western mind, not an account of the author's own intellectual development. The association of masculinity with rationality and independence and femininity with collaboration and the natural world has a long history in western thought, even if it has no basis in reality. I think it is unfair to lambast the author on the basis of this summary (or to condemn him for what may be an accurate history of the way in which intellectual endeavour has been framed through time).

GoatBongoAnonymous Mon 31-Mar-14 18:19:02

So again, feminine = nature, emotion, preverbal, and masculine = autonomy, reason, language. Nothing original there then!
He needs to reread his Aristotle.

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Creeping Mon 31-Mar-14 19:50:46

Perhaps he is trying to be critical of the masculin view, by claiming the dialectical movement is now swinging more towards the feminine side. But at the same time, by suggesting that rationality is masculine and participation (whatever he means by that) is feminine he contributes to the reification of a masculin way of thinking versus a feminine way of thinking.

Strange choice of words though, heroic. Why would aspiring to complete rationality be heroic? Don't like the idea of a "primordial unity with nature", if there is such a thing, as exclusively feminine either.

LurcioLovesFrankie Mon 31-Mar-14 20:00:02

Barf! It's stuff like that which makes me so glad I'm out of academic philosophy (though I used to do philosophy of physics, so was largely detached from that sort of stuff)...

Honestly, I'd have ripped an undergraduate to shreds if they'd come out with shite like that. I think I may have to go and read some Donna Haraway to cheer myself up grin Later on, when I get a spare moment, I may have to post my all time favourite footnote (about female monkeys' orgasms) to cheer you up.

rosabud Mon 31-Mar-14 22:30:25

I'm not an academic so this may be rubbish: isn't he just aligning nature as a feminine concept and individuality/action/seperateness-from-nature as a masculine concept? And isn't that just a conventional way of referring to such concepts? It sounds a bit out-dated and, also, a bit like the Da Vinci Code which is not at all academic but equally nonsensical.

The masculine/feminine thing aside, it sounds to me as if he's saying that the geatest thing about human consciousness is that it has striven to get away from unconscious nature and striven to find its true identity but has, in fact, discovered that its very identity, the very consciousness that is what it means to be human, is actually all part of nautre anyway. So it's swings and roundabouts, really.

Am I anywhere close??

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Creeping Tue 01-Apr-14 10:42:57

Basically, why does he need to attach these labels of masculin and feminine to different ways of thinking. It doesn't add anything. In fact, constructing history in this way only perpetuates the traditional view. Whilst he seems or claims to criticize the old way of thinking, he is actually contributing to it, ironically.

Dervel Tue 01-Apr-14 10:46:10

The problem with that rationalist perspective is no matter how unbiased and factual it appears (or tries to appear). There are always facts or accounts one has to gloss over for space saving if nothing else. Choosing what is edited out betrays a bias even if the rest looks beyond reproach.

I think it is far better to establish your biases going in. It is far more intellectually honest. Problem is the current academic biases are perceived as objective enough, and the default view becomes far more about how you can frame the debate according to the current rulebook.

Going into the nuts and bolts of modern academic thought led me to Wittgenstein and his Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus. Which formalises logic in a way that supersedes the Ancient Greek roots. However logic proves absolutely nothing apart from perhaps Decartes first certainty. It is however fantastic at formalising thought, but requires suppositions. Logical reasoning can support those suppositions, but never prove them.

There does however seem to be a view wether it is conscious or not that if you can logically support a supposition you have proved it. Which is classically where the punters Buffy points out go wrong on here. Outside of academia most of our suppositions are guided by our emotions, whether one is male or female. Some just like to dress up what they are stating as pure intellect, when it is not.

I have rambled on long enough but as a parting thought philosophy means friend or lover of wisdom Sophia means wise. Wisdom if we want to get western about it had a woman's name, and the deity for wisdom (and civilisation for that matter) is Athena. If we want to get all mythological about it that is!

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LRDtheFeministDragon Tue 01-Apr-14 10:55:55

I find that eyebrow-raisingly racist, too.

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