Geneviève Fraisse

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Geneviève Fraisse (born October 1948 in Paris) is a French philosopher and an historian of feminist thought.

She was born within Murs blancs ((French) "White walls"), a community founded by Emmanuel Mounier at Châtenay-Malabry. Her parents, Paul Fraisse (an author of books of experimental psychology) and Simone Fraisse (an author of books on Charles Péguy, Ernest Renan, and Simone Weil), were both professors at the Sorbonne. After May 1968, she helped Jacques Rancière create the journal Les Révoltes logiques ((French) "Logical revolts"). Author of numerous books, her work focuses on the history of the controversy of the sexes from an epistemological and political viewpoint.

Her research led her to postulate concepts on the "domestic", "exclusive democracy," "women of reason", the "two governments", the "mixing of the sexes" and, more recently, "consent". The complexity of the debate on gender led her to work closely with the historians, particularly on the synthesis of the history of women in the West. Seen as a leader of contemporary thought, her idea of gender equality lies between theory and practice, elaborating concepts from contemporary history.

Geneviève Fraisse has been an interministerial delegate on women's rights from 1997 to 1998 and a Member of European Parliament from 1999 to 2004, as an independent member of the European United Left / Nordic Green Left. She took the initiative of two parliamentary agendas, one on the performing arts, the other on women and sport. Since 2004, Geneviève Fraisse has also been a producer at France Culture (Europe ideas).

Geneviève Fraisse joined the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) in 1983. She helped create the International College of Philosophy (1984). She was Visiting Scholar at the Institute for Advanced Study in 1990. A doctor, she has been director of research at CNRS since 1997 and visiting professor at Rutgers University (USA, 2000–2002). She was also president of the Scientific Committee of the Institut Emilie du Châtelet from 2006 to 2010. From 2011 to 2013, she gave a Master Class at Science-Po Paris, "Pensée des sexes et démocratie", with the program PRESAGE (Programme de Recherche et de Savoir sur le Genre).


  • (French) Femmes toutes mains, essai sur le service domestique, Seuil, 1979.
  • (French) Clémence Royer, philosophe et femme de science, La Découverte, 1985, reprinted 2002.
  • (French) Muse de la raison, démocratie et exclusion des femmes en France, Alinea 1989, Folio-Gallimard 1995.
  • (French) La Raison des femmes, Plon, 1992.
  • (French) La Différence des sexes, PUF, 1996.
  • (French) Les Femmes et leur histoire, Folio Gallimard, 1998.
  • (French) La Controverse des sexes, PUF, 2001.
  • (French) Les Deux gouvernements : la famille et la Cité, Folio Gallimard, 2000.
  • (French) Le Mélange des sexes, Gallimard jeunesse, 2006.
  • (French) Du consentement, Seuil, 2007.
  • (French) Le Privilège de Simone de Beauvoir, Actes Sud, 2008.
  • (French) L’Europe des idées followed by Touriste en Démocratie. Chronique d'une Élue du Parlement Européen 1999-2004, (with Christine Guedj), L’Harmattan/France culture, 2008, 353pp.
  • (French) Service ou servitude, Le Bord de l'eau, 2009, reprint of "Femmes toutes mains" with a new introduction.
  • (French) A côté du genre. Sexe et philosophie de l'égalité, Le Bord de l'eau, 2010, reprint of "La Différence des sexes", "La Controverse des sexes" and others texts.
  • (French) "La Fabrique du féminisme, Textes et entretiens", le Passager clandestin, 2012.
  • (French) "Les Excès du genre, concept, image, nudité", éditions Lignes, 2014.

Collaborative works[edit]

  • Histoire des femmes en Occident, volume IV : The nineteenth century collection edited by Georges Duby and Michelle Perrot, Plon, 1991, pocket edition, 2002.
  • Deux femmes au royaume des hommes, with Roselyne Bachelot-Narquin and Ghislaine Ottenheimer, Hachette Littérature, 1999.
  • « À côté du genre », Masculin-Féminin, La Découverte, 2004.


  • Opinions de femmes, de la veille au lendemain de la Révolution Française (M.-A. Gacon-Dufour, O. de Gouges, C. de Salm, A. Clément-Hémery, F. Raoul), editor, Côté-Femmes, 1989.


This article was translated from its equivalent in the French Wikipedia on 19 July 2009.

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