Review Questions On FTMT

1. Held begins by arguing that some of the fundamental concepts of ethics are, as a historical matter, “gendered”. What does she mean by this? How does the example she gives of the concepts of reason and rationality support her claim? If Held is right about this, what does it say about our larger understanding of human nature?

2. How, according to Held, has the public/private distinction affected the perception of the nature of women in philosophy? How has the nature of women been viewed in the light of the traditional understanding of reason and rationality?

3. After discussing the historical situation of how women have traditionally been understood in ethics, Held moves on to discuss how current philosophical work by women is transforming the current understanding of certain key concepts. In what two ways, according to Held, have women transformed the way that emotion is approached in ethics? What work inspired this re-thinking of emotion?

4. Explain how the feminist reappraisal of motherhood undercuts the public/private distinction, on Held’s view?

5. Held explains and gives several examples of how feminine insights might suggest radical changes to the way that we conceive of the self (i.e. of personal identity). Summarize these changes.

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