Question: if philosophy is male dominated, are women philosophers working on male thoughts/programs? Why or why not?

It should be of little surprise to find that people writing for a feminist blog will be disinclined to agree that women philosophers are all working on men’s thoughts. Nonetheless, there are lots to be said on related topics.

One phenomenon that is of interest is when one or more women develop an alternative to men’s thought in an area. For example, when it seemed that just about everyone was thinking about the necessary and sufficient conditions for “S knows that P” women philosophers started writing about how impoverished that approach to knowledge is. And though Aristotle and Hume are virtue theorists, Foot’s decades long investigation of morality and virtues hardly is merely working out the details of their programs.

Probably less well-known is Kristin Andrews work on animal psychology and its consequent revision of our understanding of folk psychology.

There are many more instances where women in effect propose a transformation of a field. I’d love to see examples our readers might come up with.

Of course, working out the details of others’ thought can also be powerful and important. Perhaps women working in metaphysics or logic come close to doing that.

Do please share examples you might think of!