Thinking sex politically: rethinking 'Sex' in Plato's Republic.

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Sandford, Stella (2005)

This is in a special issue of the journal entitled 'Thinking Politically'. The material derives from Sandford's ongoing book project, contracted to Polity Press, Plato and 'Sex'.
  • References (22)
    22 references, page 1 of 3

    1 This essay is a shortened version of the first chapter of my forthcoming Plato and Sex (Polity Press, 2006).

    2 Perhaps the best-known philosophical critique of assumptions concerning the category of sex is Judith Butler's Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity (New York: Routledge, 1990). Almost all of the philosophical work in this field, however, is indebted to Michel Foucault, The History of Sexuality: An Introduction, trans. Robert Hurley (New York: Pantheon, 1978).

    3 See, for example, Anne Fausto-Sterling, Sexing the Body: Gender Politics and the Construction of Sexuality (New York: Basic Books, 2000).

    4 See, for example, Suzanne J. Kessler, Lessons from the Intersexed (New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 1998).

    5 These are the definitions given in the Collins English Dictionary.

    6 I use the term ''modern'' in a broad sense here in distinction from the ''ancient.'' I leave open the question as to when, exactly, ''sex'' came to have the meaning that we tend to ascribe to it today. Thomas Laqueur suggests that ''sex'' began to take on this meaning in the seventeenth century. See Laqueur, Making Sex: Body and Gender from the Greeks to Freud (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1992), 8.

    7 For the purposes of this essay, ''Plato'' refers to the author of the Republic and other dialogues, ''Socrates'' to a character in these dialogues.

    8 See, for example, Susan Moller Okin, Women in Western Political Thought (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1992).

    9 Unless otherwise stated, quotations are from Desmond Lee's translation of Plato's Republic (Harmondsworth, UK: Penguin, 1987). References in the text cite the Stephanus numbers of Plato's dialogues.

    10 Aristotle, The Politics and The Constitution of Athens, trans. Jonathan Barnes (revising Benjamin Jowett) (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996), 39 (1264b, 4-7).

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