The Society for Ancient Greek Philosophy Newsletter

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Sex differentiation is a pervasive and striking feature of the animal world, of which humans form a part. Patriarchy and role differentiation between men and women are pervasive phenomena in human societies. Aristotle is not about to re-design the world. But these phenomena are explained and justified at the economic level, and that is not where human values lie. At the higher level of civilized life, the differentiation becomes anomalous. Aristotle never shows how the anomaly is to be overcome. This is partly because the account of the homestead and the treatment of the city as such are not made into a single whole. Like the problem of slavery, the problem of women's place in the city is not treated as urgent.


Francis Sparshott presented "Aristotle on Women" on the Society for Ancient Greek Philosophy panel at the World Congress of Philosophy in Montreal in 1983. A later version was published in Philosophical Inquiry 7 (1985) 177-200.

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