Context

(Student Guide to World Philosophy)

This collection of essays originated as a series of lectures delivered by Luce Irigaray at Erasmus University in Rotterdam during the second semester of 1982, when she was serving as the Jan Tinbergen Chair of Philosophy. By this time, Irigaray’s controversial writing on the subjects of language, psychoanalysis, and gender were already well known, and the lectures contained in this book expand on her previously published ideas regarding the connection between language, culture, and women’s place or lack of place in society. Her style of writing is highly unusual, combining elements of traditional literary theory and analysis with extremely unusual methods of composition. Irigaray uses strange punctuation, a multitude of hyphenated and created words, sentence fragments, and other grammatical techniques in an attempt to use what she regards as a flawed instrument, language, to contain her sometimes radical ideas.