Partial Answers - Homepage Journal of Literature and The History of Ideas The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
 Publications

 Volume 17/1, includes forum "Narrative Selves"
 January 2019

 Volume 16/2, includes forum on Monika Fludernik's Towards a 'Natural' Narratology
 June 2018

 Volume 16/1 includes forum "Modernity and Mobility: Victorian Women Traveling"
 January 2018

 Volume 15/2
 June 2017

 Volume 15/1: includes forum "Audionarratology"
 January 2017

 Volume 14/2: includes forum "Modern Jewish Spaces"
 June 2016

 Volume 14/1: includes forum "Saul Bellow as a Novelist of Ideas"
 January 2016

 Volume 13/2: includes forum "Comics and the Canon"
 June 2015

 Volume 13/1: includes forum "TheGhetto as a Victorian Text"
 January 2015

 Volume 12/2: includes forum "The Novel and Theories of Love"
 June 2014

 Volume 12/1
 January 2014

 Volume 11/2: includes forum "Translating Philip Roth"
 June 2013

 Volume 11/1
 January 2013

 Volume 10/2: includes forum "Bildung and the State"
 June 2012

 Volume 10/1: includes forum "Fernando Pessoa and the Issue of Heteronymy
 January 2012

 Volume 9/2: Dickens: Uneasy Pleasures
 June 2011

 Volume 9/1
 January 2011

 Volume 8/2: British Women Writers
 June 2010

 Volume 8/1 includes forum "The Ethics of Temporality"
 January 2010

 Volume 7/2: Eyewitness Narratives
 June 2009

 Volume 7/1
 January 2009

 Volume 6/2: Narrative Knowing, Living, Telling
 June 2008

 Volume 6/1
 January 2008

 Volume 5/2
 June 2007

 Volume 5/1
 January 2007

 Volume 4/2: Narrative as a Way of Thinking
 June 2006

 Volume 4/1
 January 2006

 Volume 3/2
 June 2005

 Volume 3/1
 January 2005

 Volume 2/2
 June 2004

 Volume 2/1
 January 2004

 Volume 1/2
 June 2003

 Volume 1/1
 January 2003

 Quick Article Search

   Newest Articles

 Response Essay
 Monika Fludernik

 Experience, Affect, and Literary Lists
 Eva von Contzen

 Posthuman Narration as a Test Bed for Experientiality
 Marco Caracciolo

 The Curse of Realism
 Karin Kukkonen

 More than Minds
 Jonas Grethlein

 Toward the Non-Natural
 Maria Mäkelä

 Two Conceptions of Experientiality and Narrativity
 Dan Shen

 Against Nature
 Brian McHale

Get Adobe Reader

Updated Up To 26/06/2018
Volume 6, Number 1 (January 2008) : 1--31
A “World of Nothing, but Pure Wit”
Margaret Cavendish and the Gendering of the Imaginary
Yaakov A. Mascetti
Rubric A: Topoi

Abstract
This paper delineates the early-modern re-conception of gender categories in the work of Margaret Cavendish, and her opposition of imagination and wit to the disenchanted reality produced by male thinkers of her time. Conceptions of “knowledge” and “truth” changed significantly during the first six decades of the seventeenth century, fashioning contemporary notions of masculinity and femininity. Against the background of the rise of modern science, within a system of epistemic hegemony synonymous with male strength and social superiority, Margaret Cavendish, Duchess of Newcastle, initiated a tacit work of feminine redemption by endorsing and elaborating conceptions imposed by the dominating habits of thought of her time. Responding to those philosophical discourses in which intellectual inquiry had taken on the traits of an allegorical penetration of the masculine “mind” into the secrets of a feminine nature, Cavendish reconceived that mind as the “Rational Soule,” understood as the source and objective of human knowledge. Cavendish forged an epistemological system which was intended not to oppose this “patriarchal” system, but to define a fanciful and witty dimension parallel to the masculine dominion of objectivity, where she manifested and realized the inalienable right for a woman to think within the intimacy of her mind and her house. The privacy of her “solitary mind” was not a prison but the independent locus of feminine cognition and enfranchisement.
 All Rights Reserved to The Hebrew University of Jerusalem- Partial Answers © 2004. Powered By Priza

The Johns Hopkins University Press