Engendering Origins

Critical Feminist Readings in Plato and Aristotle

Edited by Bat-Ami Bar On

Subjects: Women's Studies
Series: SUNY series, Feminist Philosophy
Paperback : 9780791416440, 247 pages, December 1993
Hardcover : 9780791416433, 247 pages, December 1993

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Table of contents


Bat-Ami Bar On

Part One: Plato

Hairy Cobblers and Philosopher-Queens
Elizabeth V. Spelman

Eros and Epistemology
Christine Pierce

Feminist Dialectics: Plato and Dualism
Judith Genova

Overcoming Dualism: The Importance of the Intermediate in Plato's Philebus
Cynthia Hampton
Diotima Speaks Through the Body
Susan Hawthorne

Part Two: Aristotle

Who's Who in the Polis
Elizabeth V. Spelman

Women, Slaves, and "Love of Toil" in Aristotle's Moral Philosophy
Eve Browning Cole

Nourishing Speculation: A Feminist Reading of Aristotelian Science
Cynthia A. Freeland

Aristotle and the Politics of Reproduction
Nancy Tuana

Aristotle: Women, Deliberation, and Nature
Deborah K. W. Modrak

Aristotle on the Woman's Soul
Christine M. Senack

Suggestions for Further Reading




This book introduces feminist voices into the study of Platonic and Aristotelian texts that modern Western philosophy has treated as foundational. The book concerns the extent to which Platonic and Aristotelian texts are (un)redeemably sexist, masculinist, or phallocentric.

Bat-Ami Bar On is Associate Professor of Philosophy and Director of Women's Studies at the State University of New York at Binghamton.


"This book presents a lively sense of cutting-edge feminist dialogue on the canonical works. While gender is at the center, the issues range from class structure to dualism to science to morality to epistemology. The Western philosophical tradition, including foundations of dualism and assumptions about neglect of women, is given a thorough reworking here. " — Inez Alfors, State University of New York, College at Oswego

"This book tackles areas of Platonic and Aristotelian philosophy traditionally overlooked by feminists (e. g., Aristotelian science). The contributors provide us with textual evidence for new interpretations of canonical texts, and in doing so they offer a new vision of the canon itself. " — Diane Raymond, Simmons College