The Pennsylvania State University
Cover for the book Reconstructing Political Theory

Reconstructing Political Theory

Feminist Perspectives Edited by Mary Lyndon Shanley, and Edited by Uma Narayan
  • Copyright: 1997
  • Dimensions: 6 x 9
  • Page Count: 224 pages
  • Hardcover ISBN: 978-0-271-01724-2
  • Paperback ISBN: 978-0-271-01725-9
  • Co-publisher: Polity Press

Honorable Mention, Victoria Schuck Award from the American Political Science Association

“This collection is a valuable contribution both to the feminist challenge to mainstream political theory and to ongoing debates within feminist theory. The essays in this volume reveal how profoundly the full inclusion of women transforms fundamental concepts and arguments in political theory—from dependency and privacy to rights and power.”

In this volume, a companion to Feminist Interpretations and Political Theory (Penn State, 1991) edited by Mary Lyndon Shanley and Carole Pateman, leading feminist theorists rethink the traditional concepts of political theory and expand the range of problems and concerns regarded as central to the analysis of political life. Written by well-known scholars in philosophy, political science, sociology, and law, the book provides a rich interdisciplinary account of key issues in political thought.

While some of the chapters discuss traditional concepts such as rights, power, freedom, and citizenship, others argue that topics less frequently discussed in political theory—such as the family, childhood, dependency, compassion and suffering—are just as significant for an understanding of political life. The Introduction shows how such diverse topics can be linked together and how feminist political theory can be elaborated systematically if it takes notions of independence and dependency, public and private, and power and empowerment as central to its agenda.

Uma Narayan is Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Mary Lyndon Shanley is Professor of Political Science, both at Vassar College.

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