Universitatea din București, Facultatea de Litere; University of Bucharest, Faculty of Letters
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Antropologie și etnologie
Women Members of the Bucharest Sociological School as Researchers and Authors:
a Synthetic Outlook
In the anthology “These second-class characters”. Publications by women members of the Bucharest Sociological School, Theodora-Eliza Văcărescu initiates the exploration of the history of Romanian sociology by considering the gender issue. Her introductory study provides convincing arguments that, with a few exceptions, women scientists who were members of the Bucharest Sociological School (BSS) have been marginalized both by the leaders of the School and by posterity. Nevertheless, the following article does not employ a gender perspective, suggesting instead to reconsider women’s contributions as part of the valuable scientific heritage of BSS on one side and in a larger frame of feminine epistemology on the other side.
To this respect, the article reviews the intellectual identity of the BSS in the light of recent critical contributions which underline the uniqueness of Gusti’s scientific and institutional enterprise in a particular historical context dominated by the effort to consolidate Romania’s national construction after the unification in 1918. Further, the scientific contributions of women members of the BSS are examined by taking into consideration their adherence to feminist ideology and to the “research and action” ideology of Gusti’s School and also the intrinsic quality of the content and form of a few articles signed by few representative authors, such as Ştefania Cristescu, Dochia Ioanovici or Paula Herseni. In the last section of the article, the idea of difference between feminine and masculine cognitive modes is explored, identifying samples of a possible feminine epistemology in the varied materials included in the anthology edited by Theodora-Eliza Văcărescu.
Keywords: Bucharest Sociological School, sociological monograph, qualitative research, women sociologists, feminine epistemology
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