women


Reading Non-fiction book # 3 I was aware that I was being selective about what chapters I really paid attention to: My interest lies in what Karen Vintges says in one of the essays is Simone de Beauvoir‘s concept of art de vivre or art of living, which aligns her to the tradition of “philosophy as a way of life” as outlined by Pierre Hadot in his book of that title.
I’m drawn to how she makes use of Hegel‘s master-slave dialectic and how she seems to demand something quite rigorous from women.
The previous post sets out a vague framework for what I’m going to read and write about: I am interested in what Simone de Beauvoir has to say about being a woman and have a sense of wanting to wrestle with some of her thinking about how it applies to my life.
Please let me know what you think about Simone de Beauvoir and her thinking today.

New blog post about women in the new government here. I’ll also be posting the final round up of the leaders’ wives contest soon.

At the start of the year I set myself a target of reading 12 non-fiction books and 12 novels. It’s only now that I’ve decided to keep track of what I’m reading on this blog so I’m going to give a brief run-through of what I’ve read so far.
Novel # 1 First I read Love in Winter, written by Storm Jameson and published in 1935.
Just one of her 45 novels and part of a trilogy, Love in Winter is one of just a handful still in print. It was a gem of a Christmas present: discovering a writer is a real treat and being introduced to one who writes so sparingly on such a large scale, touching on the political and individual – and has written so many books – feels like a ticket to explore.

Non-fiction book #1
One Dimensional Woman, Nina Power, Zero Books
With a title taken from One Dimensional Man by Herbert Marcuse the book explores how contemporary woman is defined by consumerism and feminist language hijacked to present liberation and fulfillment in terms of shopping, pampering and indulgence.
I will write some of the key points I picked up in this book in a later post, but reading this book, which posed the question ‘where have all the interesting women gone?’ reinforced the idea I’d had writing posts here and here that the interest in French women may represent a search for something more deep-rooted and perhaps philosophical about what it is to be a woman.
This lead me to Non-fiction book # 2 which I have recently finished.
Simone de Beauvoir, Philosophy and Feminism by Nancy Bauer
I read the Second Sex as a 20-year-old but reading this book opened up Simone de Beauvoir’s writing to me in a new way. It examines how Beauvoir engaged with big name philosophers such as Hegel and his .
My plan now is to be lead by Beauvoir who grappled with his idea of the Master/Slave dialectic in her attempt to answer the question “what is a woman?”
It feels like a big project and I’m not sure where it is going to end up. But on this blog I plan to keep track of the books I read and the theories/ideas I come across. It will be like setting out a map of sorts of the route I’m taking.

My round up of the week on the campaign trail for the leaders’ wives is here.

New post looking at women in this General Election here – NOT SamCam, Sarah Brown and Miriam Gonzalez Durantez.

I’ve written the latest round- up of the leaders’ wives on the campaign trail on my new blog here.
The new blog will focus on women, particularly on issues women face worldwide not frequently covered by the media, press attitudes towards women and women’s issues, journalism and innovative uses of new media around the world.
A Rye View will be my personal blog, where I will keep track of activities and projects and write about anything that catches my eye.

With the Lib Dems ahead in some of the polls the Conservative party in particular will be focusing on potential areas of weakness in Nick Clegg’s party’s policies.
International aid and defence is the focus of the leaders’ debate on Sky News on Thursday, so the article by Jeffrey Sachs, director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University, and author of ‘Common Wealth with David Cameron in the Independent yesterday examining ways in which women can be put “at the heart of” of the party’s vision for international development.
The plans included a commitment to spending 0.7 of GDP on overseas aid, with an emphasis “on greater transparency, ensuring the money reaches the people who need it most” and recognition of the significance of investing in women as conduit of development.

“Women can hold the key to development in some of the world’s poorest countries – in education, enterprise, micro-finance and healthcare. Investing in women pays dividends throughout the entire community.”

“..with women making up a significant majority of the world’s poorest people, we need targeted action to support women the world over. Take maternal mortality, for example: 350,000 women die during childbirth every year, a figure that has barely fallen in the past two decades in many regions. A Conservative government will work to strengthen health systems and family planning facilities in developing countries, including steps to improve access to well-trained midwives and emergency obstetrics care.

“Third, because a joined-up international approach is essential, we need to ensure that action on women and development is on the agenda at key global meetings. A Conservative government will make this a top priority for Britain at the G8, G20 and UN summits this year. And it will work closely with countries such as Canada and the US, which have already said that tackling maternal and child mortality should be an urgent global priority as part of achieving the Millennium Development Goals.”

Photocredit: Subcomandanta via a Creative Commons licence

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