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Women and Evil


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Noddings received a bachelor's degree in mathematics and physical science from Montclair State College in New Jersey, a masters degree in mathematics from Rutgers University, and a Ph.D. in education from the Stanford Graduate School of Education. Nel Noddings worked in many areas of the education system. She spent seventeen years as an elementary and high school mathematics teacher and school administrator, before earning her PhD and beginning work as an academic in the fields of philosophy of education, theory of education and ethics, specifically moral education and ethics of care. She became a member of the Stanford faculty in 1977, and was the Jacks Professor of Child Education from 1992 until 1998. While at Stanford University she received awards for teaching excellence in 1981, 1982 and 1997, and was the associate dean or acting dean of the School of Education for four years. After leaving Stanford University, she held positions at Columbia University and Colgate University. She is past president of the Philosophy of Education Society and the John Dewey Society. In 2002-2003 she held the John W. Porter Chair in Urban Education at Eastern Michigan University. She has been Lee L. Jacks Professor of Education, Emerita, at Stanford University since she retired in 1998.


Noddings (education, Stanford Univ.) presents innovative and insightful criticism of traditional understandings of the concept of evil; she then goes on to construct a humanitarian (rather than polemically feminist) alternative to both the concept as tradition has given us to understand it--effeminate, materialist, responsive to violence--and strategies for re-educating our culture morally--to mediate, to practice moderation, to share with rather than oppose the Other. Her grasp of theological and philosopical history is sound, her writing concise and cogent, and her topic always timely. Her book is not perfect; scholars will feel invited to respond to it. Yet most libraries will need and want it, as it addresses readers interested in women's studies, cultural anthropology, religion, and philosophy. Accessible to general readers as well. --Francisca Goldsmith, Berkeley P.L., Cal.

"The power of Noddings' book . . . lies in its challenge to traditional ethical systems. . . . There is something sensible, immediate, and profoundly thought-provoking about her claims. . . . This is a challenging book and deserves attention."--Karen Lebacqz, "Theological Studies

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