LIFTING THE VEIL by Linda Jean Shepherd


The Feminine Face of Science
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 Shepherd became a biochemist in the 70's, married a fellow graduate student she'd known since high school, pursued a career in biotechnology, and eventually divorced. Some seven years ago, she began a course of Jungian analysis that changed her life. From allegiance to the image of science as a male-dominated hierarchy based on rules of logic and a reductionist view of biology, she discovered Jung's principle of the Feminine--the necessary complement, Jung said, to the Masculine in each of us. The result is a book that aims to persuade the reader to cultivate the Feminine in science and in life, along with the other complements in Jung's theories of opposing pairs--e.g., feeling as opposed to thinking, and intuition as opposed to sensation. Successive chapters deal with qualities of the Feminine: feeling, nurturing, receptivity, cooperation, intuition--all aspects that speak to the interconnectedness and interdependence of things, their relatedness to the ``whole.'' How these play out in science is illustrated by way of anecdotes and conversations with contemporary female and male scientists, revealing how they think and relate to the objects of their study. Shepherd believes that, overall, a cultivation of the Feminine can undo the Baconian tradition of man ``conquering'' nature and can lead to greater moral and social responsibility that can pay off in terms of preservation of the planet. Her zeal extends to Gaia theory, holistic medicine, and some forms of ESP--convictions that may weaken her case. Much of what Shepherd says makes sense. Interestingly--and independently--forces within bioscience are moving toward more integrated approaches: old-fashioned physiology may rise again. A Jungian coincidence?

Pub Date: May 30th, 1993
ISBN: 0-87773-656-1
Page count: 352pp
Publisher: Random House
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1st, 1993