Monday, 8 March 2010

"What can we women know, save philosophies of the kitchen?"

After leading worship in the Ecumenical Centre this morning Elaine Neuenfeldt sent us this wodnerful extract about how cooking aids thinking and writing - I do very much hope she is not going to find us a quote about housework along the same lines

Dear women
I'm sharing here a powerful reflection from Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz who was an exceptional seventeenth-century nun who set precedents for feminism long before the term or concept existed. This is an offering to continue our reflections, our network, our sisterhood! Thank you for sharing your wisdom, your solidarity and your commitments for gender justice.

"What can we women know, save philosophies of the kitchen?"

[Continuing with examples of studying without books, Juana goes to a topic that a "Sor Filotea" would know about, but that a bishop of Puebla wouldn't:]

Well, and what shall I tell you, my Lady, of the secrets of nature that I have learned while cooking? I observe that an egg becomes solid and cooks in butter or oil, and on the contrary that it dissolves in sugar syrup....

I shall not weary you with such inanities, which I relate simply to give you a full account of my nature, and I believe this will make you laugh. But in truth, my Lady, what can we women know, save philosophies of the kitchen? It was well put... that one can philosophize quite well while preparing supper. I often say, when I make these little observations, "Had Aristotle cooked, he would have written a great deal more." [p.75]