Disciplinary Matters in the Hypatia Controversy


  • Namrata Mitra Iona College


Hypatia controversy, Rebecca Tuvel, social justice


The problem that was thrown up during the Hypatia controversy is a systemic one. I argue that objections to Tuvel’s essay regarding its exclusion of perspectives from marginalized points of view should be reframed as a disciplinary wide issue. I show some ways in which the universal applicability and vantage point often assumed in canonical writings in philosophy, specifically on history and personal identity, emerge from specific contexts and points ofview. I demonstrate what is at stake in recognizing the particularity of these contexts. I find that the false dichotomy between seemingly interested “social justice” scholarship and disinterested inquiries into truth, which I hold perpetuates the disciplinary conditions that produced the Hypatia controversy.


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Author Biography

Namrata Mitra, Iona College

Namrata Mitra is an Assistant Professor of English at Iona College (United States). She earned a Ph.D. degree in Philosophy and Literature at Purdue University in 2012. Her research interests include feminist philosophy, queer theory, and postcolonial literature. Her research examines representations of sexual violence in South Asian literature, comparative postcolonial theories, and the place of shame in nationalist movements.






39.2 Special Section