Re: Anthropology of Science

Ruby Rohrlich (rohrlich@GWIS2.CIRC.GWU.EDU)
Wed, 4 Oct 1995 22:01:01 -0400

No, of course science isn't inherently sexist. But it started out in
patriarchal societies, where women were refused admittance to the
colleges and universities. Even then, some women managed to make
significant discoveries. Look at Marie Curie, even at a later date, even
after she won 2 nobel prizes, she was refused admittance to the French
scientific research academy. Also, the absence of egalitarian values
influences choice of subject matter, hypotheses and conclusions. I've
been too busy to keep up with the latest literature on the subject, but I
suggest two books dating from l989 which are good as a start: The
Mind Has No Sex?: Women in the Origins of Modern Science byLonda Schiebinger
amd Feminism & Science, edited by Nancy Tuana. Moreover, some male
scientists share these views, and do what they can to eliminate the
phallacies. Ruby Rohrlich.

On Tue, 3 Oct 1995, Jay Kotliar

> Is science an inherently a sexist institution? There are sexist scientists,
> there are sexist institutions devoted to science, but I am not as yet
> convinced that science itself as a cosmological institution is in itself
> sexist. I know it is fashionable these days in our society to discuss "male"
> and "female" patterns of thought-but I find much of this categorization is
> too simplistic, overly broad, and does not account for the wide variety of
> personalities within genders and the overlap between genders. I am getting
> irritated with gneral broadsides against science in anthropology-is
> postmodern anthropology contributing anything beyond a critique?