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About Marie de Gournay and the idea of equality between the sexes

Grant number: 21/13944-3
Support Opportunities:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): April 28, 2022
Effective date (End): April 27, 2023
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Philosophy - History of Philosophy
Principal Investigator:Maria das Graças de Souza
Grantee:Clêmie Ferreira Blaud
Supervisor: Pellegrin Marie-Frédérique
Host Institution: Faculdade de Filosofia, Letras e Ciências Humanas (FFLCH). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Research place: Université Jean Moulin Lyon III, France  
Associated to the scholarship:19/22352-2 - The issue of equality between men and women in Marie de Gournay, BP.DR


This research investigates the work of Marie Le Jars de Gournay with regard to the problem of equality between men and women, which is the central theme in the texts "Egalité des hommes et des femmes" (1622) and "Grief des dames" (1626), and appears in some decisive passages of "Apologie pour celle qui escrit" (1626). In the seventeenth century, the idea of equality between the sexes, or even the superiority of women, takes on new shape; in practice, the woman remains under the tutelage of men, admitting concessions as in the case of the new class of "préciouses" or in the case of nuns who are allowed to celebrate the sacrament of baptism. Gournay refuses the concessions defending a strong thesis, in which equality between men and women reaches the moral, social, political and religious dimensions as a regulating principle. For this purpose, Gournay's strategy is to present herself as a reader of philosophers and rhetoricians, employing skeptical doubt and considering evidence of equality between the sexes that are not observed in laws and customs. The hypothesis to be examined in this research is divided into two parts: i. Gournay articulates a change in approach to the question of women, proposing that the idea of male guardianship in "benefit of the end" gives way to the idea of equality as a regulating principle; ii. Gournay's thought produces a mark in the course between Renaissance philosophy and Modern philosophy. It is about recognizing Marie de Gournay's place as a philosopher of the birth of modernity, as well as contributing to contemporary feminist debates in the light of the history of philosophy, in which women's thinking has its proper place. (AU)

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