Socialism, Feminism, and Philosophy: A Radical Philosophy Reader

Socialism, Feminism, and Philosophy: A Radical Philosophy Reader

Socialism, Feminism, and Philosophy: A Radical Philosophy Reader

Socialism, Feminism, and Philosophy: A Radical Philosophy Reader


Since 1972, the journal "Radical Philosophy" has provided a forum for the discussion of radical and critical ideas in philosophy. This anthology reprints some of the best articles to have appeared in the journal during the past five years. It covers topics in social and moral philosophy which are central to current controversies on the left, focusing on theoretical issues raised by socialist, feminist, and environmental movements. The articles engage with contemporary issues in critical terms, and represent the best of recent philosophical work on the left.


Christopher J. Arthur

Original versions of the chapters in this anthology appeared in Radical Philosophy; it represents very well the concerns of the magazine. Radical Philosophy first appeared in January 1972 and has come out three times a year since then. The founders and most of the early contributors had been students in the 1960s. Our intellectual formation was characterised by a disjunction between the ferment of radical and critical ideas coming out of the student revolt and the narrow sterile orthodoxy pervading the academic system in which we were trained. In those days professional philosophy was dominated by the analytical approach in its most philistine form—so-called ‘ordinary language philosophy’.

The Radical Philosophy Group was formed in 1971 to organise publications and conferences which would provide a forum for the discussion of ideas excluded from the existing institutions. We were the first of the radical subject-based groups that emerged around that time to answer a need felt right across the spectrum of learning. (For more about the intellectual context, and original objectives, of Radical Philosophy see the Introduction by Roy Edgley to Radical Philosophy Reader, London, Verso, 1985.)

Since those days much has changed: analytical philosophy is in decline and no new paradigm has established itself; the thinkers previously excluded from the curriculum (such as Hegel, Marx and Sartre) are now generally taught. Nonetheless, the continued success of the journal shows it still fulfils a felt need. But what exactly is the project calling itself Radical Philosophy? The Radical Philosophy magazine reaches a more diverse readership than any other philosophy journal. This is because Radical . . .

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