Women in Philosophy, Engineering & Theology: Gendered disciplines and projects of critical re-imagination

Publication Name

Women's Studies International Forum


Philosophy, theology and engineering are each characterised by striking, yet similar, low participation rates by female academics. While these disciplines seem very different, and so the diagnosis of the causes of this under-representation might likewise be expected to differ, we show a commonality of analysis in the diagnoses of, and responses to, women's under-representation. In each, we find a shared argument that concepts and methodologies central to that discipline are gendered male. We also find a shared response which urges engagement in projects of critical re-imagination. We conclude with a case study of critical re-imagination in philosophy and draw some lessons from its successes and failures for the potential of gendered innovations to transform male dominated disciplines. While critical re-imagination of key concepts, presuppositions, and methodologies in these disciplines may be a necessary condition for improving participation rates by women, it is by no means sufficient.

Open Access Status

This publication is not available as open access



Article Number


Funding Number

CE 140100012

Funding Sponsor

Australian Research Council



Link to publisher version (DOI)