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There Are Two Sexes: Essays in Feminology

Antoinette Fouque; David Macey and Catherine Porter (Translators)

Published in February 2015 by Columbia University Press.

Antoinette Fouque cofounded the Mouvement de Libération des Femmes (MLF) in France in 1968 and spearheaded its celebrated "Psychanalyse et Politique," a research group that informed the cultural and intellectual heart of French feminism. Rather than reject Freud's discoveries on the pretext of their phallocentrism, Fouque sought to enrich his thought by more clearly defining the difference between the sexes and affirming the existence of a female libido.

By recognizing women's contribution to humanity, Fouque hoped "uterus envy," which she saw as the mainspring of misogyny, could finally give way to gratitude, and by associating procreation with women's liberation, she advanced the goal of a parity-based society in which men and women could write a new human contract. The essays, lectures, and dialogues in this volume finally allow English-speaking readers access to the breadth of Fouque's creativity and activism. Touching on issues in history and biography, politics and psychoanalysis, Fouque recounts her experiences running the first women's publishing house in Europe; supporting women under threat, such as Aung San Suu Ki, Taslima Nasrin, and Nawal El Saadaoui; and serving as deputy in the European Parliament. Her theoretical explorations discuss the ongoing development of feminology, a field she initiated, and while she celebrates the progress women have made over the past four decades, she also warns against the trends of counter-liberation: the feminization of poverty, the persistence of sexual violence, and the rise of religious fundamentalism. 

About the Author

Antoinette Fouque (1936-2014) was psychoanalyst and director of research at the Université de Paris VIII. She authored of a number of books, including Gravidanza, Qui êtes vous Antoinette Fouque, and Génésique


"Antoinette Fouque played a decisive role in the formation and subsequent history of the Women's liberation movement in France. An extraordinary character, a highly cultivated woman and a relentless activist, she took controversial steps while opening new paths for the inscription and recognition of women in the world. Her formulations were idiosyncratic, forceful, debatable, provocative. This book is a precious albeit fragmentary testimony to her thought and action. It will help the English speaking world interested in feminism complete the intellectual and political puzzle formed by what was called "French Feminism" some decades ago."Anne-Emmanuelle Berger, Cornell University


"There Are Two Sexes departs from the same principle as Simone de Beauvoir's classic The Second Sex, that the feminine is devalued within traditional human cultures. Antoinette Fouque does not conclude, however, as feminists do, that it is necessary to align the secondary sex with the primary one; instead, she accords women their own genius, a genius she calls matricial, a creative faculty that first appears in procreation, the power of life. In the process, the struggle of women for recognition is altered and exalted."François Guéry, Dean, Faculty of Philosophy, University Jean Moulin Lyon


More information here.