Women in the History of Philosophy (PHIL*3210)
Term: Fall 2013
The aim of this course is to examine the philosophical contributions made by women in the 17th and 18th centuries, a time when women were universally discouraged from intellectual study. The women we will be considering are note worthy not only for the fact that they wrote philosophy under adverse conditions, but also for the fact their their writings challenged views of some of the most important thinkers of their time. We will begin with a consideration of women's lives in this period - this will provide important context for appreciating not only the small numbers of women writing in this period but also the philosophical accomplishments of those who did write. We will follow by examining, in turn, the relevant arguments of major seventeenth and eighteenth century thinkers and the critical response of the women philosophers under consideration. Through this course I hope to provide the student, generally, with an appreciate for the dominating debates of the early modern period and, in particular, for the contributions women made to those debates.
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