Saying goodbye to Sandra Bartky (1935-2016)

Sandra Bartky died yesterday.

Bartky was a pioneering feminist philosopher whose work on femininity and objectification was often cited here on the blog.

(For me, she was also a teacher, a mentor, and a friend. She persuaded me to apply to Illinois at Chicago for grad school and take up their acceptance. Bartky came and gave talks at Dalhousie (in Halifax, Nova Scotia) when I was in the last year of my undergraduate. I’d only applied in Canada, for Masters degrees. I’d never even been to the US–except the train to Montreal went through the US but back in those lax border crossing days it didn’t even stop. Sandra was shocked. But you know you want to do a PhD? Yes. So why are you applying to Masters programs. Come to Chicago. Apply! We’d love to have you. I applied and when I was accepted she phoned and talked me down from my fear of large American cities. My first time in the US was my drive to Chicago from Halifax. A bit of culture shock but Sandy was a terrific mentor. Later, she talked me into my first Midwest Society for Women in Philosophy meeting.  Later still, I spent time with other women in the grad program at her cottage in Michigan. My daughter Mallory spent the weekend for her first trip away from home at the age of 6 weeks. I saw her last at a Society for the Philosophy of Love and Sex meeting at Urbana Champaign a few years ago when I introduced her to a feminist philosophy grad student of mine, Jenn Epp. She liked that!)

There’s a more detailed notice over at the Feminist Philosophers Blog.

Here’s just some of the posts on our blog that talk about Sandy’s work:

2 thoughts on “Saying goodbye to Sandra Bartky (1935-2016)

  1. Lovely words, lovely stories, and what a lovely person. I never met her, but benefited from her work and influence on feminism, philosophy, and the women’s movement. And from her mentorship of you, as it brought you here! Thanks for sharing this with us.

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