Advertisement

Embodied Ways of Knowing: Revisiting Feminist Epistemology

  • Karen Barbour
Chapter

Abstract

Feminist scholarship has developed a focus on articulating alternative women’s ways of knowing and validating women’s experiences. The focus of my feminist interest in epistemology began with my attempt to understand my role as knower, and to contribute to the development of multiple and alternative “knowledges”. Key critiques of Western epistemology and dualistic ontology informed the development of feminist and phenomenological understandings of embodiment and embodied ways of knowing. Feminist writing about women’s movement experiences, considering the examples of throwing a ball, climbing, long-distance running and rowing, all offered contributions to alternative knowledges. In particular, through embodied ways of knowing as a dancer, I hope to offer insights relevant to other embodied practitioners in sport, leisure and physical activity.

References

  1. Albright, A. C. (1997). Choreographing difference. The body and identity in contemporary dance. Hanover, NH: Wesleyan University Press.Google Scholar
  2. Allen-Collinson, J. (2008). Running the routes together: Corunning and knowledge in action. Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, 37(1), 38–61.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Allen-Collinson, J. (2011). Feminist phenomonology and the woman in the running body. Sport, Ethics and Philosophy, 5(3), 297–313.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Allen, R. E. (Ed.). (1966). Greek philosophy: Thales to Artistotle. New York: The Free Press.Google Scholar
  5. Barbour, K. N. (2002). Embodied ways of knowing: Women’s solo contemporary dance in Aotearoa. PhD thesis, Faculty of Education, University of Waikato, New Zealand.Google Scholar
  6. Barbour, K. N. (2004). Embodied ways of knowing. Waikato Journal of Education, 10, 227–238.Google Scholar
  7. Barbour, K. N. (2011a). Dancing across the page: Narrative and embodied ways of knowing. Bristol, UK: Intellect Books.Google Scholar
  8. Barbour, K. N. (2011b). Writing, dancing, embodied knowing: Autoethnographic research. In D. Davida (Ed.), Fields in motion: Ethnography in the worlds of dance (pp. 101–117). Canada: Wilfrid Laurier University Press.Google Scholar
  9. de Beauvoir, S. (1972). The second sex (H. M. Parshley, Trans.). Harmondsworth: Penguin.Google Scholar
  10. de Beauvoir, S. (2010). The second sex (C. Borde & S. Malovany-Chevallier, Trans.). New York: Knopf.Google Scholar
  11. Belenky, M. F., Clinchy, B. M., Goldberger, N. R., & Tarule, J. M. (Eds.). (1986). Women’s ways of knowing. The development of self, voice and mind. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  12. Bigwood, C. (1991). Renaturalizing the body (with the help of Merleau-Ponty). Hypatia, 6(3), 54–73.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Braidotti, R. (1994). Nomadic subjects. Embodiment and sexual difference in contemporary feminist theory. New York: Columbia University Press.Google Scholar
  14. Caudwell, J. (2014). ‘Feeling blue’: The ordinary pleasures of mundane motion. Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health, (ahead of print), 2–12.Google Scholar
  15. Chisholm, D. (2008). Climbing like a girl: An exemplary adventure in feminist phenomenology. Hypatia, 23(1), 9–40.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Code, L. (1991). What can she know? Feminist theory and the construction of knowledge. New York: Cornell University Press.Google Scholar
  17. Davion, V. (1994). Is ecofeminism feminist? In K. Warren (Ed.), Ecological feminism (pp. 8–28). London & New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  18. Debold, E., Toman, D., & Brown, L. M. (1996). Embodying knowledge, knowing desire. Authority and split subjectivities in girl’s epistemological development. In N. R. Goldberger, J. Tarule, B. Clinchy, & M. Belenky (Eds.), Knowledge, difference and power. Essays inspired by women’s ways of knowing (pp. 85–125). New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  19. Descartes, R. (1968). Discourse on method and the meditations (F. E. Sutcliffe, Trans.). England: Penguin Books.Google Scholar
  20. Diprose, R. (1994/1995). Performing body-identity. Writings on Dance, 11/12, 6–15Google Scholar
  21. Du Plessis, R., & Alice, L. (1998). Feminisms, connections and differences. In R. Du Plessis & L. Alice (Eds.), Feminist thought in Aotearoa, New Zealand, connections and differences (pp. xv–xx). Auckland, New Zealand: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  22. Flax, J. (1993). Disputed subjects: Essays on psychoanalysis, politics and philosophy. London & New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  23. Fraleigh, S. H. (1987). Dance and the lived body. A descriptive aesthetics. Pittsburg, PA: University of Pittsburg Press.Google Scholar
  24. Gatens, M. (1995). Imaginary bodies. Ethics, power and corporeality. London & New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  25. Goldberger, N. R. (1996). Looking backward, looking forward. In N. R. Goldberger, J. M. Tarule, B. M. Clinchy, & M. F. Belenky (Eds.), Knowledge, difference and power. Essays inspired by women’s ways of knowing (pp. 1–17). New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  26. Goldberger, N. R., Tarule, J. M., Clinchy, B. M., & Belenky, M. F. (Eds.). (1996). Knowledge, difference and power. Essays inspired by women’s ways of knowing. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  27. Grosz, E. (1994). Volatile bodies. Toward a corporeal feminism. Australia: Allen & Unwin.Google Scholar
  28. Harding, S., & Hintikka, M. B. (Eds.). (1983). Discovering reality. Feminist perspectives on epistemology, metaphysics, methodology and philosophy of science. Dordretch, Holland, Boston & London: D. Reidel Publishing Co..Google Scholar
  29. Hartsok, N. C. M. (1983). The feminist standpoint: Developing the grounds for a specifically feminist historical materialism. In S. Harding & M. B. Hintikka (Eds.), Discovering reality. Feminist perspectives on epistemology, metaphysics, methodology and philosophy of science (pp. 283–310). Dordretch, Holland, Boston & London: D. Reidel Publishing Co..Google Scholar
  30. Hawkesworth, M. E. (1989). Knowers, knowing, known: Feminist theory and claims of truth. Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society, 14(3), 533–557.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Hills, L. (2002). Climbing free: My life in the vertical world. New York: W.W. Norton.Google Scholar
  32. Irigaray, L. (1985). This sex which is not one (C. Porter, Trans.). Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.Google Scholar
  33. Jagger, A. M., & Bordo, S. R. (Eds.). (1989). Gender/body/knowledge. Feminist reconstructions of being and knowing. New Brunswick & London: Rutgers University Press.Google Scholar
  34. Keller, E. F., & Grontkowski, C. R. (1983). The mind’s eye. In S. Harding & M. B. Hintikka (Eds.), Discovering reality. Feminist perspectives on epistemology, metaphysics, methodology and philosophy of science (pp. 207–224). Holland, Boston & London: D. Reidel Publishing Co..Google Scholar
  35. Kruks, S. (2014). ‘Women’s lived experience’: Feminism and phenomenology from Simone de Beauvoir to the present. In M. Evans, C. Hemmings, & M. Henry (Eds.), The SAGE handbook of feminist theory (pp. 75–92). London: Sage Publications Ltd.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Merleau-Ponty, M. (1962). The phenomenology of perception (C. Smith, Trans.). London: Routledge & Kegan Paul.Google Scholar
  37. Merleau-Ponty, M. (1964a). The primacy of perception. Evanston, IL: Northwestern University Press.Google Scholar
  38. Merleau-Ponty, M. (1964b). Signs (R. C. McCleary, Trans.). Evanston, IL: Northwestern University Press.Google Scholar
  39. Mills, S. (1997). Discourse. London & New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  40. Nettleton, S., & Watson, J. (Eds.). (1998). The body in everyday life. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  41. Reinharz, S. (1992). Feminist methods in social research. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  42. Scruton, R. (1982). Kant. London: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  43. Sheets-Johnstone, M. (1966). The phenomenology of dance. Madison & Milwakee, WI: The University of Wisconsin Press.Google Scholar
  44. Sheets-Johnstone, M. (1999). The primacy of movement. Amsterdam & Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Co..CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Stanley, L. (Ed.). (1990). Feminist praxis: Research, theory and epistemology in feminist sociology. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  46. Stanley, L., & Wise, S. (1990). Method, methodology and epistemology in feminist research processes. In L. Stanley (Ed.), Feminist praxis: Research, theory and epistemology in feminist sociology (pp. 20–60). London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  47. Stinson, S. W. (1995). Body of knowledge. Educational Theory, 45(1), 43–54.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Warren, K. J. (1996). Ecological feminist philosophies. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press.Google Scholar
  49. Weedon, C. (1987). Feminist practice and poststructuralist theory. Oxford: Basil Blackwell.Google Scholar
  50. Weiss, G. (1999). Body images. Embodiment as intercorporeality. New York & London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  51. Williams, S. J., & Bendelow, G. (1998). The lived body. Sociological themes, embodied issues. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  52. Young, I. M. (1980). Throwing like a girl. In I. M. Young (Ed.), Throwing like a girl (pp. 141–159). Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press.Google Scholar
  53. Young, I. M. (1998a). Situated bodies. Throwing like a girl. In D. Welton (Ed.), Body and flesh. A philosophical reader (pp. 259–273). Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  54. Young, I. M. (1998b). “Throwing like a girl”: Twenty years later. In D. Welton (Ed.), Body and flesh. A philosophical reader (pp. 286–290). Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Karen Barbour
    • 1
  1. 1.University of WaikatoHamiltonNew Zealand

Personalised recommendations