Misogyny in the Western Philosophical Tradition: A Reader by Beverley Clack

By Beverley Clack

The Devil's gateway' (Tertullian); 'Big young children their entire lifestyles lengthy' (Schopenhauer); 'The misbegotten male' (Aquinas). Such understandings of girls are surprising, now not least simply because they arrive from the good minds chargeable for the formation of the western highbrow culture. during this assortment, the roots of philosophical misogyny are explored and uncovered. from time to time worrying, now and then humorous, this anthology contains numerous texts. Lesser-known authors corresponding to Otto Weininger and Oswald Spengler are put along recognized items from Plato, The Malleus Maleficarum , Schopenhauer and Nietzsche. As such, this can be a big addition to the gathering of these attracted to exploring the connection among ladies and society, ladies and the academy.

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You are the devil’s gateway: you are the unsealer of that forbidden tree: you are the first deserter of the divine law: you are she who persuaded him whom the devil was not valiant enough to attack. You destroyed so easily God’s image, man. On account of your desert – that is, death – even the Son of God had to die. And do you think about adorning yourself over and above your tunics of skins? Come, now; if from the beginning of the world the Milesians sheared sheep, and the Serians1 spun trees, and the * From The Writings of Tertullian, vol.

But at present, such is the unfortunate condition of mankind, that no man of sense will even venture to speak of common tables in places and cities in which they have never been established at all; and how can any one avoid being utterly ridiculous, who attempts to compel women to show in public how much they eat and drink? There is nothing at which the sex is more likely to take offence. For women are accustomed to creep into dark places, and when dragged out into the light they will exert their utmost powers of resistance, and be far too much for the legislator.

And it is clear that the rule of the soul over the body, and of the mind and the rational element over the passionate, is natural and expedient; whereas the equality of the two or the rule of the inferior is always hurtful. The same holds good of animals in relation to men; for tame animals have a better nature than wild, and all tame animals are better off when they are ruled by man; for then they are preserved. Again, the male is by nature superior, and the female inferior; and the one rules, and the other is ruled; this principle, of necessity, extends to all mankind.

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