Key Concepts in Philosophy is a series of concise, accessible and engaging introductions to the core ideas and subjects encountered in the study of philosophy. Specially written to meet the needs of students and those with an interest in, but little prior knowledge of, philosophy, these books open up fascinating, yet sometimes difficult ideas. The series builds to give a solid grounding in philosophy and each book is also ideal as a companion to further study. Gender: Key Concepts in Philosophy provides clear and comprehensive exposition and analysis of the main philosophical theories, ideas and arguments that inform, and are raised by, questions of gender and sexuality. It explores both early feminist arguments, which stress 'sameness' between sexes in the interests of equality, and later theories, which emphasise difference. It raises the question of how succesfully feminist theory has negotiated the relationship between gender, race and class. The text looks at how Marxist and psychoanalytic theory help to articulate feminist theory and also at how they might inhibit it.
It also explores the ways in which the approaches of Foucault and Derrida have been taken up by feminist philosophy to reformulate questions of power and ideology. Finally it addresses contemporary questions of sexuality, transgender and technology, and how these require a reworking of traditional feminist theory. Philosophy undergraduates will find this an invaluable aid to study, one that goes beyond simple definitions and summaries to really open up fascinating and important ideas and arguments.
Tina Chanter is Professor of Philosophy at DePaul Unversity, USA.