Only 10 women in list of top 100 intellectuals

Foreign Policy (FP) and Prospect magazine have compiled a list of the world’s top 100 intellectuals, including only 10 women.

Germaine Greer, the feminist and one-time celebrity Big Brother contestant, and anti-globalisation journalist Naomi Klein were among those women to make Prospect magazine’s annual list.
The eight other women are Florence Wambugu, a plant virologist from Kenya; Elaine Scarry, an American literary theorist; Martha Nussbaum, a US philosopher; Sunita Narain, an Indian developmental environmentalist; Camille Paglia, an American US critic and feminist; Shirin Ebadi, a human rights activist from Iran; Julia Kristeva, a philosopher and feminist from France, and Ayaan Hirsi Ali, a politician from Somalia and the Netherlands.
Commenting on the list, writer David Herman criticises its strong male content, querying the whereabouts of the new generation of female intellectuals.
…”This partly reflects the dominance of the male world of strategic studies and policy institutes.”

Unbelievable.
Oh by the way, Paul Wolfowitz and Larry Summers made the list. Nuff said.

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10 Comments

  1. Posted September 30, 2005 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

    Overall, the list is underwhelming. Jurgen Habermas, Shirin Ebadi and Noam Chomsky for sure, and then, well, I don’t know. Ater that, there are certainly some interesting people on the list — Naomi Klein and Robert Putnam for instance — but I just don’t see where Christopher Hitchens, Umberto Eco, and — does that really say Paul Wolfowitz? — fit in. When I think “intellectuals,” I think, “People I’d like to take take a semester of lectures from.” This list is rather thin in that category.

  2. CaptDMO
    Posted September 30, 2005 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

    intellectuals?
    What are the qualifications to be labled as such?
    Is this a complimentary thing to be labled?
    What’s the current pay scale?
    Are there prerequisite college courses?
    Where do they hold the competition for top 100?
    Who is qualified to judge?
    Is there an Intellectuals International Org.?

  3. Posted September 30, 2005 at 4:47 pm | Permalink

    Larry f**king Summers is on that list??? That pretty much sums it up.

  4. JesusJonesSuperstar
    Posted September 30, 2005 at 6:12 pm | Permalink

    I wonder what would make a fair distribution. must it be 50/50? would 45/55 work? where does one draw the line.
    More importantly is there any way to objectively measure this, so as to make it worth any more than a puff opinion piece? if it is the latter then I nominate myself.

  5. drlloyd
    Posted October 1, 2005 at 10:31 am | Permalink

    I’m guessing this is more like the list of 100 people to read. I am unfamilars with the humanities but the science list seems to have a number of people I find interesting and have recomended to others (dawkins, dyson). That said, the science people are more or less “middlebrow” writers, who synthasize ideas into themes rather than break alot of new ground anymore. People who were cutting edge (and still may be)and now seek to evangalize their ideas.
    Is this the case with the other ones?

  6. drlloyd
    Posted October 1, 2005 at 10:32 am | Permalink

    I’m guessing this is more like the list of 100 people to read. I am unfamilars with the humanities but the science list seems to have a number of people I find interesting and have recomended to others (dawkins, dyson). That said, the science people are more or less “middlebrow” writers, who synthasize ideas into themes rather than break alot of new ground anymore. People who were cutting edge (and still may be)and now seek to evangalize their ideas.
    Is this the case with the other ones?

  7. Maayan
    Posted October 1, 2005 at 4:32 pm | Permalink

    I agree that the list is annoying (I was especially flabbergasted to see Pope Benedict XVI), but reading the criteria, it starts to make a little more sense. When they say how they defined a “public intellectual”, they explicitly say that “This list is about public influence, not intrinsic achievement.” In effect, all we can see from this list is that women’s voices aren’t being heard, or aren’t being taken seriously. (Look, for example at the political columnists: Thomas Friedman and Paul Krugman make the list, but no Maureen Dowd or Molly Ivins. My only consolation in that regard is that George Will didn’t make the cut either.)
    So, nothing shocking here. Disappointing, of course, but not a surprise.

  8. Posted October 2, 2005 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

    Marilynne Robinson, Margaret Atwood, Nadine Gordimer, A.S. Byatt? These are writers who think, and deserve listing w/Coetzee and the other male (and only male) novelists who made the cut.

  9. gayle
    Posted October 3, 2005 at 10:31 pm | Permalink

    Dear Lord,
    Now Camille Paglia will become even more obnoxious (if this is possible). And just when I thought we were rid of her. Ack!

  10. Posted October 4, 2005 at 12:02 am | Permalink

    Camilla Paglia an “intellectual”? Oh, please. She’s a joke, a media creation.
    And any list which includes leading crackpot Peter Singer can’t be taken seriously.

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