Christian culture 基督教文化学刊

Female Genius and Western Christian History

Alison JASPER, University of Stirling, UK



Though women’s lives have been fragmented in ways analysed very acutely by Simone de Beauvoir in 1949, I argue they have not merely suffered but sometimes have dealt creatively with this fragmentation; sustaining forms of resistance, tradition and connection  in limiting circumstances.  I argue that it is important not to gloss over these instances of women’s creative management in limiting circumstances but to try to do full justice to women who have struggled to become human subjects at some cost. Not to do so, is to exclude and belittle women all over again. Using philosopher Julia Kristeva’s idea of  female genius, I try to find a way of acknowledging this achievement without losing sight of the obstacles women have undoubtedly faced. In this lecture, I illustrate my point in reference to a seventeenth century English Christian mystic, Jane Leade. In the larger project I have looked in detail at further examples.



Simone de Beauvoir, Julia Kristeva, Jane Leade, female genius, history of English women.


Full Text (International Version):



Full Text (Simplified Chinese Version):