Philosophy 190

Fall 2020

Number Title Instructor Days/time Room
190 Proseminar: Feminist Philosophy Bailey TuTh 9:30-11:00 TBA

This seminar is an exploration of select issues in feminist philosophy. We will lay the groundwork for that exploration by investigating some core concepts in feminist theory, including social construction, oppression, epistemic positionality, and intersectionality. Then, we will analyze three influential philosophical approaches to thinking about sex oppression: humanistic feminism, gynocentric feminism, and the dominance approach. Finally, we will zero in on two topics that have been the focus of groundbreaking recent work. In a unit on epistemic injustice, we will ask: how do social power relations, including gendered power relations, shape our status and skills as knowers and communicators? Are there forms of knowledge that have been neglected or undervalued because of sexism or misogyny, and how might they best be recovered or revalorized? And in a unit on decolonial feminism, we will ask: How can feminism can address the impact of imperialism? How can it respect cultural difference without losing its critical bite? Throughout the course, we will particularly focus on the ways in which questions about the nature, status, and rights of women and female people intersect with questions about race, class, religion, coloniality, and disability. Readings will consist of a mixture of contemporary work and landmark texts from the past century and are subject to change based on student interest and ability.

Admission by application: If you are interested in taking the course, please write the instructor (at and briefly outline your background in philosophy (listing the courses already taken) and explain why you are interested in this seminar. Philosophy majors who are seniors and juniors will be given priority. Enrollment capacity for the course is 15 students.

Previously taught: SP20, FL19, SP19, FL18, SP18, FL17, SP16, FL15, SP15, FL14, SP13.