Chapter 12

 

Edith Stein and John Paul II on Women

Sarah Borden Sharkey

 

Edith Stein was born in 1891 and raised in Breslau, Germany, a city now part of John Paul II’s native Poland. Like John Paul II, Stein’s major studies were in philosophy, and particularly phenomenology. Stein was a close friend of the Pope’s teacher, Roman Ingarden. Both she and John Paul II were significantly influenced also by the teaching and writing of Max Scheler.

John Paul II and Edith Stein not only share much in terms of intellectual influences and formation, but John Paul had a special interest in Stein’s life, declaring her a "blessed" in 1987 and saint in 1998. He recommends the study of her work in Fides et Ratio and declared her a co-patronness of Europe in 1999.1 In his apostolic letter proclaiming Stein as co-patronness, John Paul II says, "[p]articularly significant for her time was her struggle to promote the social status of women; and especially profound are the pages in which she explores the values of womanhood and woman’s mission from the human and religious standpoint."2 Prudence Allen claims that John Paul’s complementarianism as laid out in Love and Responsibility may be "following Stein’s intellectual lead,"3 and Laura Garcia quotes Cardinal Lustiger’s description of John Paul II as Edith Stein’s "best pupil."4

It is likely that Edith Stein’s writings, particularly on women although certainly not exclusively so, had an important influence on John Paul II’s own thought. In this paper, however, I am less interested in investigating historically how and to what degree Stein’s work influenced John Paul, although such a study would be extremely worthwhile. Rather, I shall focus on a brief comparison of the two thinkers’ accounts of women. Their intellectual work shares many common features; there are, however, also points of critical difference—both in their respective emphases and in their respective accounts of the origin of femininity and masculinity. These differences are not unimportant for evaluating whether we ought to accept some version of gender complementarianism and, if so, which version we ought to accept. I will not here take the further step of evaluation, but perhaps the comparisons made here will lay the foundation for future evaluation. I will begin with a brief sketch of Stein’s and John Paul’s common descriptions of women and then turn to the two key points of divergence.

COMMONALITIES

It is immediately striking how similar are both the language and themes are in Stein’s and John Paul’s writings on women. Both speak regularly not only of the nature of women and men, but also of their ‘dignity,’ ‘distinctive value,’ and ‘vocation.’ These shared terms, however, indicate more than linguistic commonalities; there is also a shared commitment to the idea that the differences between women and men are significant and that they involve some kind of call or vocation.5 But feminine and masculine distinctivenesses and vocations do not, for either thinker, in any way undermine our equality or common humanity.

Both thinkers account for our equality yet complementarity by pointing not to differing traits, but to differing emphases within our common human traits. Stein says, "[t]he existence of all powers, which a man possesses, [are] within the feminine nature – even though they may generally appear in different degrees and relationships."6 Similarly, in a 1995 Angelus Reflection, John Paul II says, "it is obvious that they [women and men] have fundamental dimensions and values in common. However, in man and in woman these acquire different strengths, interests, and emphases and it is this very diversity which becomes a source of enrichment."7

Both claim that women and men share all human faculties and that the differences between women and men have to do with the order of development, use, or emphases among those faculties, not the faculties per se.

Further, both agree about how those emphases differ, describing the distinctiveness of women as a particular attention to, and concern for, actual concrete human beings and their holistic development and flourishing. One might call this a maternal care or motherliness. Such motherliness is not simply biological – and both warn that if one focuses on the biological version too simply or quantitatively, one will misunderstand true motherliness. (Thus both Stein and John Paul emphasize two ways of living out the feminine distinctiveness: motherhood and virginity.8) Rather, by motherliness, both mean a particularly personal orientation. In his encyclical on women, Mulieris Dignitatem, John Paul says:

God entrusts the human being to her [women] in a special way. Of course, God entrusts every human being to each and every other human being. But this entrusting concerns women in a special way—precisely by reason of their femininity—and this in a particular way determines their vocation.9

In a letter on the collaboration of the sexes, he says:

Among the fundamental values linked to women’s actual lives is what has been called a "capacity for the other". Although a certain type of feminist rhetoric makes demands "for ourselves", women preserve the deep intuition of the goodness in their lives of those actions which elicit life, and contribute to the growth and protection of the other.

This intuition is linked to women’s physical capacity to give life. Whether lived out or remaining potential, this capacity is a reality that structures the female personality in a profound way. It allows her to acquire maturity very quickly, and gives a sense of the seriousness of life and of its responsibilities. A sense and a respect for what is concrete develop in her, opposed to abstractions which are so often fatal for the existence of individuals and society. It is women, in the end, who even in very desperate situations, as attested by history past and present, possess a singular capacity to persevere in adversity, to keep life going even in extreme situations, to hold tenaciously to the future, and finally to remember with tears the value of every human life.10

He claims that the feminine "ethos" is marked by a "readiness to accept life"11 and suggests that there is "a special sensitivity" characteristic of femininity.12

John Paul rarely makes these claims without also emphasizing our common humanity. For example, in the section just following the previous long quotation, he says:

It is appropriate however to recall that the feminine values mentioned here are above all human values: the human condition of man and woman created in the image of God is one and indivisible. It is only because women are more immediately attuned to these values that they are the reminder and the privileged sign of such values. But, in the final analysis, every human being, man or woman, is destined to be ‘for the other’. In this perspective, that which is called ‘femininity’ is more than simply an attribute of the female sex. The word designates indeed the fundamental human capacity to live for the other and because of the other.13

Stein likewise notes our common humanity and common calling, and yet distinguishes the feminine orientation in a similar manner.14 She writes in a 1928 essay:

Each human being is called naturally to this total humanity, and the desire for it lives in each one of us. We may consider that the drive for this which is particularly strong in woman is well related to her particular destiny of companion and mother. To be a companion, that means to be support and mainstay, and to be able to be so, a woman herself must stand firmly…. To be a mother is to nourish and protect true humanity and bring it to development.15

Speaking of "woman’s intrinsic value", Stein says:

The attitude of woman goes toward the living-personal and goes toward the whole. To cherish, to protect and preserve, to bring nearer and to cultivate growth: this is her natural, genuinely maternal longing. Lifeless matter, the fact, interests her first of all insofar as it serves the living and the personal, not ordinarily for its own sake.16

John Paul describes this orientation as the "genius of women," and Stein ties it to a feminine vocation—not in the sense of women’s roles or jobs, but in the sense of how women engage any field of activity in which they live and work.

Both think that our political, economic, and cultural realms all need the greater presence and influence of women and their distinctive "genius."17 Both condemn discrimination against women and any hindrances preventing women from entering fully into the public arena.

Stein says, "[o]nly subjective delusion could deny that women are capable of practicing vocations other than that of spouse and mother,"18 and, famously, "there is no profession which cannot be practiced by a woman."19 Stein makes note of the shifting of our societal structures and changes in the home and work, particularly since the Industrial Revolution. In light of these changes, she thinks that often the home is insufficient for engaging "all of woman’s potentialities."20 Thus, it is no surprise and quite appropriate that women should increasingly want to enter the paid workforce.

Similarly, John Paul expresses such social concerns, arguing that "there is an urgent need to achieve real equality in every area: equal pay for equal work, protection for working mothers, fairness in career advancements, equality of spouses with regard to family rights and the recognition of everything that is part of the rights and duties of citizens in a democratic State."21

Both thinkers affirm the rights of women to enter all professional realms, and yet they also think that there are particular emphases and orientation that women are likely to bring to their work—which is all the more reason to encourage women to enter the various realms of the workforce.

Yet both also add the qualification that mothers ought to have a greater role in family life in the early years of a child’s life. Stein says:

It appears to me, however, that there is a limit to such professional activities whenever it jeopardizes domestic life, i.e., the community of life and formation consisting of parents and children. It even seems to me a contradiction of the divine order when the professional activities of the husband escalate to a degree which cuts him off completely from family life. This is even more true of the wife.22

Similarly, John Paul II says:

 

Parenthood—even though it belongs to both—is realized much more fully in the woman, especially in the prenatal period.23

In rearing children, mothers have a singularly important role. Through the special relationship uniting a mother and her child, particularly in its earliest years of life, she gives the child that sense of security and trust without which the child would find it difficult to develop properly its own personal identity and subsequently, to establish positive and fruitful relationships with others.24

He makes the point a bit more explicitly in his Angelus Reflections:

the employment of women outside the family, especially during the period when they are fulfilling the most delicate tasks of motherhood, must be done with respect for this fundamental duty. However, apart from this requirement, it is necessary to strive convincingly to ensure that the widest possible space is open to women in all areas of culture, economics, politics, and ecclesial life itself, so that all human society is increasingly enriched by the gifts proper to masculinity and femininity.25

Thus, both Stein and John Paul understand women and men as each having a gender distinctiveness—that is, distinctive emphases within our common human faculties; they describe those distinctivenesses in common ways, and yet they both consistently argue that these differences in no way ought to lead to the exclusion of women or men from any professional field. Yet, finally, they both add that a mother does have a particularly important role in the early part of a child’s life.

In addition to these rather significant commonalities, we could also note their common emphasis on Mary as the example for all human beings of union with God and their common attention to men’s as well as women’s distinctivenesses.26

DIFFERENCES IN EMPHASES

Despite these quite striking similarities in claims and positions, Stein and John Paul do have at least two significant differences: (1) different emphases and (2) different accounts of the origin of femininity and masculinity.

The first, differing emphases, may in part be related to the differing contexts for their writings. Stein’s comments on women were made largely in the context of public lectures on women and women’s vocation, given before comparatively small groups in Western Europe.

John Paul wrote to a global audience and expected his words to be heard or read, not by thousands but millions. One might ask whether Stein might have placed the emphases a bit differently were she talking to a global rather than a local audience, or whether John Paul might have focused his comments differently were he speaking only to a limited number of people. Nonetheless, for whatever the reasons—be they contextual or philosophical—there are significantly different emphases in each thinker.

Both Stein and John Paul discuss the fundamental equality of women and men. John Paul, however, returns to this theme repeatedly, putting a greater emphasis on it than Stein. Once again, I would like to make clear that both affirm the full equality of women and men, but the number of times this is repeated, and the intensity of the claim, are greater in John Paul’s writings than Stein’s.

We can see a clear example of this in their respective discussions of the opening chapters of Genesis. When John Paul II discusses the calling Eve the helpmate of Adam, he says:

In the ‘unity of the two,’ man and woman are called from the beginning not only to exist ‘side by side’ or ‘together,’ but they are also called to exist mutually ‘one for the other.’ This also explains the meaning of the ‘help’ spoken of in Genesis 2:18-25: ‘I will make him a helper fit for him.’ The biblical context enables us to understand this in the sense that the woman must ‘help’ the man—and in his turn he must help her—first of all by the very fact of their ‘being human persons.’ In a certain sense this enables man and woman to discover their humanity ever anew and to confirm its whole meaning. We can easily understand that—on this fundamental level—it is question of a ‘help’ on the part of both, and at the same time a mutual ‘help.’ To be human means to be called to interpersonal communion.27

John Paul emphasizes here the notion of Eve as a helpmate, not in order to illustrate differences between women and men, but to illustrate commonalities, our common reliance on each other and fundamental relationality.28

In contrast, when Stein comments on the same passages, she says:

God has given each human being a threefold destiny: to grow into the likeness of God through the development of his faculties, to procreate descendants, and to hold dominion over the earth. In addition, it is promised that a life of faith and personal union with the Redeemer will be rewarded by eternal contemplation of God. These destinies, natural and supernatural, are identical for both man and woman. But in the realm of duties, differences determined by sex exist. Lordship over the earth is the primary occupation of man: for this, the woman is placed at his side as helpmate. The primary calling of woman is the procreation and raising of children; for this, the man is given to her as protector. Thus it is suitable that the same gifts occur in both, but in different proportions and relation. In the case of the man, gifts for struggle, conquest, and dominion are especially necessary: bodily force for taking possession of that exterior to him, intellect for a cognitive type of penetration of the world, the powers of will and action for works of creative nature. With the woman there are capabilities of caring, protecting, and promoting that which is becoming and growing.29

John Paul discusses the original order and tasks given in that order, and says, "[a]s a rational and free being, man is called to transform the face of the earth. In this task, which is essentially that of culture, man and woman alike share equal responsibility from the start."30 Stein similarly points to our joint tasks, but says, "[a]ccording to the intended original order, her place is by man’s side to master the earth and to care for offspring. But her body and soul are fashioned less to fight and to conquer than to cherish, guard and preserve. Of the threefold attitude towards the world—to know it, to enjoy it, to form it creatively—it is the second which concerns her most directly."31

Once again, John Paul discusses our human tasks in order to emphasize our commonalities as human beings; Stein to emphasize our gender distinctivenesses.32

Perhaps tied to their respective emphases on equality versus distinctivenesses, John Paul II’s and Stein’s discussions are more developed on the particular element emphasized. For example, John Paul discusses the various elements contributing to the discrimination against and desecrating of women and their dignity. He calls all of us—as individuals and as a church—to fight for equality in the social and political realm, to fight against influences that condition women and encourage them to deny their own dignity and equality; he addresses the sex trade, pornography, and the absence of women’s contributions from so much of our historical knowledge. He speaks of the women’s movement as "providential," and he apologizes for the Church’s role in the denigration of women. John Paul addresses economic concerns and is critical of an unfettered free market that makes no allowances for the distinct pressures that women face.33

Stein clearly does think that there should be no legal hindrances to women working in any professional field, and she encourages women to pursue all areas of work as well as political, social, and cultural involvement.34 She herself was influential in the 1919 declaration against sex discrimination in university hiring in Germany, and was concerned about issues of equal rights and equal access to education and professional opportunities, but she does not address nearly as many specific issues and areas as John Paul.

Stein does, however, say a great deal more about our gender differences. John Paul mentions that women and men exhibit different ways of living our common humanity and mentions motherliness as part of the feminine genius, but relatively rarely does he develop exactly how this feminine genius differs from a masculine genius, how the patterns of development differ in women and men, etc. Stein certainly affirms the fundamental equality and equal dignity of women and men, but she discusses the differences in greater detail. She describes in some detail what it means to say motherliness is the characteristic trait of women, articulating its significance for education and formation, and its role in how one pursues her vocational calling.35 She articulates the distinctive ways in which women and men tend to fall and degenerate, and she provides gender-related correctives for such degeneration.

John Paul recognizes that women as well as men can go wrong in their development and orientation. He says, "The woman of course, as much as the man, must take care that here sensitivity does not succumb to the temptation to possessive selfishness, and must put it at the service of authentic love."36 Stein, however, articulates in some detail the specific ways each gender tends to go wrong.37

DIFFERENCES IN COMMITMENTS

There are surely many reasons for these differences—some of which are likely tied to differing audiences and the different roles of the authors. But I suspect that there we can also tie these differences in emphases to differing metaphysical accounts of the person and the origin of our gender differences.

John Paul makes clear that he believes that our feminine and masculine distinctivenesses grow out of our physiological life. He says:

The maternal instinct may develop in girls at the age of puberty, since it is biologically dependent on the action of the hormones, and the woman’s sexual rhythm prepares her every month to conceive a child and adjusts her whole organism to this very purpose. This is the origin of that feeling for the child which sexology calls the maternal instinct, in recognition of the fact that it is largely the result of changes which recur monthly in the female organism.38

In Mulieris Dignitatem, he describes it a bit differently:

This unique contact with the new human being developing within her gives rise to an attitude towards human beings—not only towards her own child, but every human being—which profoundly marks the woman’s personality. It is commonly thought that women are more capable than men of paying attention to another person, and that motherhood develops this predisposition even more.39

John Paul affirms that qua form human beings are identical. It is qua matter that we differ. Because of our differing bodies, there are particular motivations encouraging us to develop our human capacities in particular ways.40 I want to emphasize that the differing material conditions motivate different development, but they do not necessitate it. John Paul is not claiming that biology determines destiny. He is simply claiming that, since human capacities must be developed over time and in particular material conditions, our different biology encourages—but does not determine—a particular order and emphasis for that development. But John Paul does not think that these motivations are formal in nature, nor that the differences between women and men—even the more than biological ones—need be attributed to any formal element.

In contrast, Stein claims that, although women’s bodies are particularly fit for women’s distinctive vocation, they are not, as far as I can tell, the reason for that vocation. She speaks of a ‘species’ of women and men, and says, "[b]y species we understand a permanent category which does not change. Thomistic philosophy designates it by the term form, meaning an inner form which determines structure."41

Stein claims that there is a feminine and masculine species, by which she means a permanent category, and not types, which are variable. She also strongly suggests that the origin of this difference is the soul itself and not the influence of the body. Our particular sexual bodies are fit to our gender, but not the cause of our gender.

As far as I can tell, Stein does not by these claims in any way intend to undermine her claim that the differences between women and men are a matter of emphases among our common human qualities. Rather, that in virtue of which the emphases differ is not, according to Stein and in contrast to John Paul, our bodies, but some element of our soul.

One might think of gender as a hue or cast to the soul. It is not a different set of capacities, but some element in virtue of which women are motivated to develop certain of the human capacities more easily, and men different ones. Once again, this is a motivation, not a determination.

In other texts, Stein makes clear that she understands individuality as accruing to our souls as well as gender. Thus, for Stein, the form or soul is the principle of our common humanity, our individual distinctiveness, and our gendered nature. These must be developed in and through our material conditions, but matter is not the reason for these distinctivenesses.

CONCLUSION

Edith Stein and John Paul share much in terms of broad understanding of women and men, and there is reason to think that Stein’s work on this topic contributed to John Paul’s position. But their positions are by no means identical, certainly not in terms of emphases, and, most significantly, not on the specifics of their metaphysical commitments. Although both accept the broadly Thomistic understanding of human beings as a unity of matter and form, John Paul stays closer to the Thomistic understanding of form as responsible for our common humanity, while non-formal elements are responsible for our gender. In contrast, Stein places gender as well as humanity at the level of form.

NOTES

1 See Fides et Ratio, no. 74. In 1980, John Paul II declared Saints Benedict, Cyril, and Methodius to be co-patrons of Europe. On October 1, 1999, he added Saints Bridget of Sweden, Catherine of Siena, and Edith Stein, also known as Teresa Benedicta of the Cross.

2 John Paul points us particularly to Stein’s "The Separate Vocations of Man and Woman According to Nature and Grace." See no. 8 of his apostolic letter proclaiming the three as co-patronesses.

3 She says, "perhaps following Stein’s intellectual lead, [John Paul II] argued for the fundamental equal dignity of the sexes and that woman’s body disposed her in a particular way to pay attention to another person" (Prudence Allen, "Philosophy of Relation in John Paul II’s New Feminism" in Women in Christ: Toward a New Feminism ed. Michele M. Schumacher [Eerdmans, 2004], p. 73, citing p. 280 of Karol Wotyla’s Love and Responsibility).

4 See Laura Garcia "Edith Stein – Convert, Nun, Martyr" in Crisis, 6 (June 1997), pp. 32-35. See also www.catholiceducation.org/articles/religion/re0001.html.

5 Mary Lemmons has helpfully called this a gender vocation.

6 Essays on Woman trans. Freda Mary Oben (ICS Publications, revised edition 1996), p. 80. Translation adapted, see Die Frau: Fragestellungen und Reflexionen, Volume 13 of Edith Stein Gesamtausgabe (Herder Verlag, 2000), p. 74.

7 July 23, 1995 (The "Feminine Genius"), no. 2.

8 John Paul points to two "dimensions of the female personality": virginity and motherhood (see Mulieris Dignitatem, no. 17), and he says in no. 21: "[a] woman is ‘married’ either through the sacrament of marriage or spiritually through marriage to Christ. In both cases marriage signifies the ‘sincere gift of the person’ of the bride to the groom." Compare with Stein’s "Problems of Women’s Education" in Essays on Woman, esp. 227. See also Stein’s "Fundamental Principles of Women’s Education" in Essays on Woman, esp. p. 264.

9 Mulieris Dignitatem, no. 30.

10 Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church on the Collaboration of Men and Women, no. 13.

11 Mulieris Dignitatem, no. 14.

12 Ibid., no. 16.

13 Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church on the Collaboration of Men and Women, no. 14.

14 Like John Paul, Stein also emphasizes our interpersonal communion as central to what it means to live as human persons. She says, "[a]ccording to everything which we learn from personal experience and the history of salvation, the Lord’s method is to form persons through other persons. Just as the child is assigned to the care and upbringing of an adult for its natural development, so also is the life of grace propagated through human mediation. Persons are used as instruments to awaken and nurture the divine spark. Thus, natural and supernatural factors reveal that even in the life of grace, ‘it is not good that man should be alone.’" (Essays on Woman, p. 127).

15 Stein, "The Significance of Woman’s Intrinsic Value in National Life" in Essays on Woman, p. 256.

16 Essays on Woman, p. 45 (translation adapted). See Die Frau, p. 19.

17 John Paul says, "In our own time, the successes of science and technology make it possible to attain material well-being to a degree hitherto unknown. While this favors some, it pushes others to the margins of society. In this way, unilateral progress can also lead to a gradual loss of sensitivity for man, that is, for what is essentially human. In this sense, our time in particular awaits the manifestation of that "genius" which belongs to women, and which can ensure sensitivity for human beings in every circumstance: because they are human!—and because "the greatest of these is love" (cf. 1 Cor. 13:13)" (Mulieris Dignitatem, no. 30). Stein says, "Woman’s nature is directed toward her original vocation of spouse and mother. … Both spiritual companionship and spiritual motherliness are not limited to the physical spouse and mother relationships, but they extend to all people with whom woman comes into contact" (Essays on Woman, p. 132).

18 Essays on Woman, p. 105.

19 Ibid.

20 Essays on Woman, p. 105.

21 Letter to Women, no. 4.

22 Essays on Woman, p. 80.

23 Mulieris Dignitatem, no. 18.

24 "World Day of Peace Message," no. 6.

25 "The Feminine Genius," July 23, 1995 Angelus Reflection, no. 1.

26 John Paul released Redemptoris Custos, on Joseph and men, a year after Mulieris Dignitatem, which could be compared with Stein’s statements about men in Essays on Woman.

27 Mulieris Dignitatem, no. 7

28 See also Mulieris Dignitatem, no. 6.

29 Essays on Woman, p. 100.

30 Letter to Women, no. 8.

31 Essays on Woman, p. 73.

32 We can see another example of this in their discussion of personal communion. John Paul repeatedly emphasizes how personal relations and communion is a human calling and equally so for both men and women. Stein, in contrast, says, "[t]he deepest feminine yearning is to achieve a loving union which, in its development, validates this maturation and simultaneously stimulates and furthers the desire for perfection in others; this yearning can express itself in the most diverse forms, and some of these forms may appear distorted, even degenerate. As we shall show, such yearning is an essential aspect of the eternal destiny of woman. It is not simply a human longing but is specifically feminine and opposed to the specifically masculine nature" (Essays on Woman, p. 94).

33 "The challenge facing most societies is that of upholding, indeed strengthening, woman’s role in the family while at the same time making it possible for her to use all her talents and exercise all her rights in building up society. However, women’s greater presence in the work force, in public life, and generally in the decision making processes guiding society, on an equal basis with men, will continue to be problematic as long as the costs continue to burden the private sector. In this area the state has a duty of subsidiarity, to be exercised through suitable legislative and social security initiatives. In the perspective of uncontrolled free-market policies there is little hope that women will be able to overcome the obstacles on their path" (no. 8 of "Welcome to Gertrude Mongella").

34 For example, "Should certain positions be reserved for only men, others for only women, and perhaps a few open for both? I believe that this question also must be answered negatively. The strong individual differences existing within both sexes must be taken into account. Many women have masculine characteristics just as many men share feminine ones. Consequently, every so-called ‘masculine’ occupation may be exercised by many women as well as many ‘feminine’ occupations by certain men. It seems right, therefore, that no legal barriers of any kind should exist" (Essays on Woman, p. 81).

35 "Man’s endeavor is exerted to be effective in cognitive and creative action. The strength of woman lies in the emotional life. This is in accord with her attitude toward personal being itself. … The emotions, the essential organ for comprehension of the existent in its totality and in its peculiarity, occupy the center of her being" (Essays on Woman, p. 96).

36 "The Feminine Genius," no. 2.

37 See, for example, Essays on Woman, pp. 190, and 256-7.

38 Karol Wojtyla, Love and Responsibility (Ignatius, 1993), p. 280.

39 Mulieris Dignitatem, no. 18.

40 Prudence Allen nicely points out: "That women have access to a maternal instinct has recently been challenged by some feminists who argue that many women appear not to manifest such an instinct while many men do. The pope argues only that it is possible for women to access the maternal instinct if they choose to because of the lived experience women have of their bodies. ‘Every woman can observe in herself the changes which occur in the relevant phase of the cycle. Apart from these there exist objective scientific methods known to biology and medicine, which help us to determine the moment of ovulation, i.e., the beginning of the fertile period.’ [Love and Responsibility, p. 280] John Paul does not deny that many women do not access the subjective source of the maternal instinct. He agrees that many women intentionally cut themselves off from this access by technological or psychological means" (Allen, p. 97).

41 Essays on Woman, p. 173.



Last Revised 13-Feb-09 10:20 AM.