Grants:Project/WriteHers: An Academic Edit-a-thon on Women Writers and Philosophers of the Early Modern Period (c. 1600-1800)

From Meta, a Wikimedia project coordination wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search
WriteHers: An Academic Edit-a-thon on Women Writers and Philosophers of the Early Modern Period (c. 1600-1800)
summaryOur project will invite experts from around the world to create and update English Wikipedia entries about early modern women writers/philosophers and their works. This will take a step towards addressing the well-known gender imbalance in Wikipedia entries on notable figures, and will get more academic researchers involved in the Wikimedia community, enhancing Wikipedia's role as a reliable, authoritative source of information. Our volunteer experts will also participate in a survey and focus group, generating new insights about what humanities scholars can do to benefit the Wikimedia community.
targetEnglish Wikipedia
amountplease add the amount you are requesting (USD)
granteeJacqueline Broad
organization• This project is affiliated with Monash University
this project needs...
created on02:16, 1 November 2018 (UTC)

Project idea[edit]

What is the problem you're trying to solve?[edit]

What problem are you trying to solve by doing this project? This problem should be small enough that you expect it to be completely or mostly resolved by the end of this project. Remember to review the tutorial for tips on how to answer this question.

It is well-known that there is a persistent gender imbalance in Wikipedia entries and among Wikipedia editors. As recently as 2016, only 17% of English Wikipedia articles were about women. Surveys estimate that at least 85% of Wikipedia editors are men.

In recent years, a number of edit-a-thons have started to address this imbalance by creating and improving Wikipedia entries on women, including projects on recent and historical women artists, women scientists, and women novelists.

Despite these efforts, many of the entries on notable women remain relatively brief, light on contextual detail, and lacking in updated citations to authoritative sources. Projects aimed at increasing the representation of women on Wikipedia have often focused on the quantity rather than quality of entries. While this groundwork is vital, Wikipedia’s role as a source of reliably accurate knowledge requires more than volume. It needs good content that is informative, neutral, and truly encyclopaedic. This content also needs to be integrated into lists and categories in order to point the reader to research that is authoritative, up-to-date, and openly accessible.

This means that more work needs to be done to ensure that the entries generated by edit-a-thons meet the highest standards of reliability, navigability, and accessibility. We need to improve knowledge equity not only by incorporating women into Wikipedia, but by doing this in a way that provides readers with the best quality of entry possible, drawing on the latest academic scholarship from around the world.

To accomplish this, we need to find a way to encourage more academic researchers to participate in Wikipedia editing. Researchers are particularly well-placed to provide the kind of content and structure that entries on notable women need. The academic community is a vast resource that can help immensely in supporting the mission of Wikipedia; by making use of this, we can take efforts to fix the Wikipedia gender gap to the next level.

Our project will focus on one subject area particularly affected by a lack of high-quality entries: women writers of the early modern era (c. 1600-1800), particularly women philosophers of that period.

Many notable women from this period do not currently have Wikipedia entries and, where entries do exist, the vast majority only feature the most general biographical details. There are very few entries with in-depth historical-intellectual content and citations of reliable recent sources (especially open access research). There is also a confusing range of tags, categories, and lists pertaining to these women, which makes it difficult for users to navigate between relevant entries. The study of early modern women writers/philosophers tends to be highly specialised academic work, meaning that any attempt to address the dearth of Wikipedia entries on these writers/philosophers will require the voluntary assistance of a number of specialist researchers in those fields.

The core problem we will address is this: there is a lack of high-quality Wikipedia entries about notable early modern women writers/philosophers, a gap that can only be filled by drawing on the knowledge and experience of academic experts in the area. Increasing the number of basic entries on these notable women won’t suffice in the long-term; to make Wikipedia the best resource it can be and to properly address the underrepresentation of women in its entries, academic researchers need to become more involved in contributing to the site.

What is your solution to this problem?[edit]

For the problem you identified in the previous section, briefly describe your how you would like to address this problem. We recognize that there are many ways to solve a problem. We’d like to understand why you chose this particular solution, and why you think it is worth pursuing. Remember to review the tutorial for tips on how to answer this question.

We propose to solve this problem by getting an international network of academic experts on early women writers/philosophers involved in a specialised edit-a-thon project that will focus on generating high-quality English Wikipedia entries and improving existing ones. This will be the next natural step from generalist edit-a-thons that focus mainly on the number of new entries. Our team of experts will add details about the context, significance, and works of notable early modern women writers/philosophers, as well as ensuring that all entries – new or existing – have citations of high-quality contemporary research (with an emphasis on open access sources).

Since good content is only one side of the equation and not sufficient on its own to support an accessible knowledge infrastructure, we also propose to ensure that entries (whether generated or edited through the project) are consistently tagged and listed, creating and improving lists of these figures where required. We will ensure that it becomes easier for the user to find reliable information on different categories of early modern women writers/philosophers and their works.

The women philosophers we will focus on include Margaret Cavendish, Anne Conway, Mary More, Bathsua Makin, Margaret Fell Fox, Mary Astell, Mary Chudleigh, Damaris Cudworth Masham, Judith Drake, Elizabeth Burnet, Elizabeth Thomas, Catharine Trotter Cockburn, Sarah Chapone, ‘Eugenia’, ‘Sophia’, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, Emilie du Chatelet, Marie le Jars de Gournay, Marguerite Buffet, Gabrielle Suchon, Elisabeth of Bohemia, Sophie Electress of Hanover, Sophie-Charlotte of Prussia, Christina of Sweden, Moderata Fonte, Lucrezia Marinella, Arcangela Tarabotti, Anna Maria van Schurman, Elizabeth Carter, Louise Keralio-Robert, Elise Reimarus, Sophie de Grouchy, Catharine Macaulay, Mary Wollstonecraft, Olympe de Gouges, Laura Bassi, Mary Hay, Mary Shepherd, Cornelie Wouters, and others.

Wikipedia currently includes only 7 of these women in their ‘List of women philosophers’ for the modern period (1600-2000).

The edit-a-thon, which is the heart of the project, will be accompanied by other activities that will contribute to the project’s key aim of improving the quality of Wikipedia entries on early modern women writers/philosophers.

  • We will host a focus group that will bring together our edit-a-thon scholars with Wikimedians and digital humanities scholars to discuss the project and its outcomes, as well as further avenues for collaboration. Any data and research outputs resulting from this will be made openly accessible, with a focus on benefiting the Wikimedia community.
  • We will analyse existing entries to ascertain which improvements need to be made and will keep records of these changes as well as any entries created. This is likely to generate useful data about, for example, trends in entries about the early modern period or works written by women, which would be collated and made available to the Wikimedian community.
  • We will hold a survey of our volunteer editors about their experiences, with a focus on continued and increased participation in Wikimedia initiatives, as well as on the perception of Wikipedia among academics. We will analyse this data in order to draw out further insights about encouraging scholars to contribute to the Wikimedia community.

This project will enhance Wikipedia’s reputation for providing authoritative, accurate and reliable up-to-date information, heightening its public appeal. It will support Wikipedia’s striving for greater knowledge equity by increasing the representation of women on the site and by bringing the benefits of the latest academic research to Wikipedia users, making readily available various types of knowledge and scholarship that were previously hard to access.

Project goals[edit]

What are your goals for this project? Your goals should describe the top two or three benefits that will come out of your project. These should be benefits to the Wikimedia projects or Wikimedia communities. They should not be benefits to you individually. Remember to review the tutorial for tips on how to answer this question.

  1. To address the under-representation of women on English Wikipedia by increasing the quantity, quality, and visibility of entries on women writers/philosophers of the early modern era, toward the goal of increased use of Wiki entries.
  2. To develop Wikipedia into an even more authoritative and reliable source of information, by bringing high-quality, cutting-edge research to bear on Wikipedia entries on English women writers/philosophers of the early modern era.

Project impact[edit]

How will you know if you have met your goals?[edit]

For each of your goals, we’d like you to answer the following questions:

  1. During your project, what will you do to achieve this goal? (These are your outputs.)
  2. Once your project is over, how will it continue to positively impact the Wikimedia community or projects? (These are your outcomes.)

For each of your answers, think about how you will capture this information. Will you capture it with a survey? With a story? Will you measure it with a number? Remember, if you plan to measure a number, you will need to set a numeric target in your proposal (i.e. 45 people, 10 articles, 100 scanned documents). Remember to review the tutorial for tips on how to answer this question.

1. Outputs (what we will do during our project to achieve our goals):[edit]

  1. Output for goal 1: We will increase the quantity, quality and visibility of entries on early modern women writers/philosophers by organising a specialised edit-a-thon that will create and/or enhance at least 30 entries. Creation and enhancement of entries will involve adding neutral, accurate details about contextual significance and key works; ensuring that entries are included and easily locatable under appropriate lists/categories; and including citations to authoritative recent sources.
  2. Output for goal 2: We will bring high-quality, cutting edge research to bear on Wikipedia entries about women writers/philosophers of the early modern era by recruiting the help of approximately 40 academic specialists in these areas. These specialists will be trained to ensure that all entries they touch meet the highest standards of reliability and verifiability, so that Wikipedia users can benefit from their expertise – particularly in locating the best up-to-date open access sources for entries.

2. Outcomes (how the project will continue to positively impact the Wikimedia community and projects):

Outcomes for goal 1:

  1. The articles created and improved through the project will continue to benefit the Wikimedia community by helping to redress the Wikipedia gender imbalance. Every additional bit of information about notable women will assist in making Wikipedia a more gender-inclusive source of information about historical facts and figures.
  2. Following our project, we would like to see a proliferation of Wikipedia entries on even more “sub-topics” to do with women writers/philosophers of the early modern era. We will encourage our volunteers and their networks to keep working on improving the quality and quantity of entries long after the edit-a-thon – a hope made likely by the knowledge and skills that they will have gained through the project.
  3. We hope that a long-term benefit of this will be that young female Wiki-readers are inspired to emulate their intellectual role models in the history of literature and philosophy. An important reason for increasing representation in Wikipedia entries is to inspire and support members of underrepresented groups by showing them that there were notable figures like them. Again, every additional high-quality entry about a notable woman will help work towards this.
  4. This edit-a-thon is intended to be the first of several, with a series of projects focusing on different time periods. We are hoping that this project will inspire others and provide the foundation for our own future undertakings.

Outcomes for goal 2:

  1. Once our project is over, we hope that at least 20% of the academic specialist researchers who were new to Wikipedia will continue to remain active contributors, editing and updating sites (especially should new or better sources become available). In general, we will increase awareness about the importance of Wikimedia participation throughout our networks. Even those who do not participate themselves will find out more about the structures that make Wikipedia entries so reliable, and about the importance of contributing to greater knowledge equity.
  2. The increased involvement of researchers in Wikipedia editing and the high quality of the sources they will cite in entries are likely to further enhance Wikipedia’s standing as a reliable, authoritative source of information for non-academic and academic audiences alike. Scholarly involvement in Wikipedia editing will be increased not only through the new editors that we will recruit and train, but also through the project’s promotional activities within academic networks as well as the results of the participant survey. The latter will provide useful new information about what can be done to encourage academics to contribute to and become part of the Wikimedia community.
  3. By improving the quality of the sources cited in Wikipedia entries, the project will make scholarship more accessible to Wikipedia users. Even long after the project has wrapped up, readers will be able to use the entries created/enhanced to find peer-reviewed, open access sources, and to learn about the venues through which they can find similar materials.

An outcome linked to both of the project’s central goals is the collection and dissemination of project data, which we believe will further benefit the Wikimedia community by providing insights about trends in project entries, usage and editing. Our project team has access to university-level expertise about and infrastructure for collecting and sharing data. This means that we can work with local Wikimedians to draw up a communication and dissemination plan that will help the Wikimedia community in the long-term.

Do you have any goals around participation or content?[edit]

Are any of your goals related to increasing participation within the Wikimedia movement, or increasing/improving the content on Wikimedia projects? If so, we ask that you look through these three metrics, and include any that are relevant to your project. Please set a numeric target against the metrics, if applicable.

Our participation-based goals include recruiting at approximately 40 academic experts on early modern women for our edit-a-thon, with the further hope that 20% of these will keep contributing to Wikimedia sites, including through active Wikipedia editing/updating.  Our content-based goal is to generate or edit at least 30 entries on the English Wikipedia.

Project plan[edit]


Tell us how you'll carry out your project. What will you and other organizers spend your time doing? What will you have done at the end of your project? How will you follow-up with people that are involved with your project?

To hold a successful edit-a-thon of Wikipedia entries on women writers/philosophers of the early modern era, we will need more than an online organisational tool or a “do-it-yourself” kit (such as those provided by other edit-a-thons). Instead, we will require a central Project Manager with research expertise in literature and philosophy who can oversee the organisation of the project—one whose job it will be to identify, invite, coordinate, and bring together a volunteer army of experts on our chosen topic, and to ensure consistency in tagging, lists, and so forth.

It will also be the Project Manager’s task to ensure that our academic volunteers do not breach Wiki-guidelines concerning restrictions on copyright material, self-citations, notability, unorthodox interpretations, and original or unpublished findings.

The Project Manager will also act as the project’s Social Media Officer, overseeing the project’s website, social media accounts and promotional activities.

The Project Manager’s tasks include:

Preparation for edit-a-thon:

  • To analyse existing entries and compile a “to-do list” in terms of what needs to be improved, and how;
  • To compile a list of entries that need to be created;
  • To generate, collate and analyse data about entries;
  • To compile a list of academics in the key areas, according to expertise;
  • To target/invite those academic experts;
  • To provide online training in how to become an editor, creating training materials where necessary;
  • To provide clear guidance on Wikimedia policies and guidelines;
  • To liaise with local Wikimedians and ensure that experienced Wikimedians will be available for the edit-a-thon and focus group;
  • To organise the main publicity event for the edit-a-thon.

During the edit-a-thon:

  • To manage communications to volunteers;
  • To act as Social Media Officer, overseeing the project’s website, Twitter account and Facebook page;
  • To oversee the project’s presence on Wiki sites, including through Talk pages and a Wiki:Project site;
  • To liaise with the existing Wikipedia editing community;
  • To review edits/entries and ensure they meet Wiki-requirements.

After the edit-a-thon:

  • To make themselves available for answering queries about entries from existing Wiki editors (while emphasising to all volunteers that no editor ‘owns’ a page and that further changes/edits are inevitable);
  • To follow up with editors and answer any queries about the project or their entries/the changes they made, and to direct them to the right Wikipedia resources;
  • To follow up with editors and encourage them to keep participating in the Wikimedia community.
  • To conduct a survey of editors’ experiences, with a focus on what could be done to encourage them and their networks to participate more extensively in Wikimedia endeavours.

Focus group:

  • To invite focus group attendees;
  • To organise a venue and catering for the focus group;
  • To invite and coordinate focus group contributions;
  • To host the focus group and ensure that the event runs smoothly, including all logistics and planning;
  • To liaise with Wikimedians, university librarians and other relevant experts in collating and disseminating the data generated by the project.

The volunteer experts’ main activities will be to improve early modern women writers/philosophers’ representation on Wikipedia by:

  • Linking existing articles to the right categories (to make them easier to find, and navigate between);
  • Adding more information, new editions, citations, recent references, and external links, to existing Wikipedia articles about women writers/philosophers;
  • Creating new Wikipedia entries about notable women writers/philosophers who don’t yet have a page devoted to them;
  • Creating new pages devoted to notable works/ideas by women writers/philosophers who already have substantive entries;
  • Consistently applying existing tags and categories, and updating/expanding lists about these women writers/philosophers, to ensure that their navigability is intuitive for site-users;
  • Adding images, where appropriate;
  • Completing a survey about their experience of the edit-a-thon and views on Wikimedia participation in the academic community

Volunteer experts who agree to participate in the focus group will also be:

  • Investigating how humanities scholarship and the Wikimedia community have intersected so far, and how the former can participate more in the latter in future
  • Exploring the new insights and data generated by the project (e.g. about trends in entries, categories/lists, usage, editing)
  • Analysing new knowledge and scholarship about early modern women writers/philosophers and their works that came about as a result of participation in the project
  • Discussing ways in which project participants can ensure that the project continues to benefit the Wikimedia community, and outlining frameworks for future projects


How you will use the funds you are requesting? List bullet points for each expense. (You can create a table later if needed.) Don’t forget to include a total amount, and update this amount in the Probox at the top of your page too!

[Will be provided as soon as we have the final figures.]

Community engagement[edit]

How will you let others in your community know about your project? Why are you targeting a specific audience? How will you engage the community you’re aiming to serve at various points during your project? Community input and participation helps make projects successful.

We already belong to a strong international community of academics who are engaged in research in our core areas, including collaborators in the SSHRC-funded new “Narratives in the History of Philosophy” network in North America; Project Vox at Duke University in North Carolina; Ruth Hagengruber’s group on Women in the History and Philosophy of Science at Paderborn in Germany; the Australasian Seminar in Early Modern Philosophy, founded at the University of Sydney; Societies for Eighteenth-Century Studies (British, American, Australian and New Zealand etc.), the Society for the History of Authorship, Reading and Publishing (SHARP) and other networks.

In addition to recruiting those scholars who we will contact directly, we expect to recruit volunteers through, ResearchGate, Google Scholar, the a-phil list (the Australasian Association of Philosophy list server), Philos-L (in the UK), the PHILOSOP list (in the US), C18-L (the Eighteenth-Century Interdisciplinary Online Discussion Forum), SHARP-L, and the Directory of Philosophers from Underrepresented Groups in Philosophy (, and the Society for Women and Minorities in Philosophy group.

We will involve the Wikimedia community through contacting relevant WikiProject groups (including the WikiProject Philosophy and WikiProject Women in Red) and staying in touch with local Wikimedians.

Get involved[edit]


Please use this section to tell us more about who is working on this project. For each member of the team, please describe any project-related skills, experience, or other background you have that might help contribute to making this idea a success.

Role Name Wiki Account Notes
Grantee A/Prof Jacqueline Broad Mxbrod Wikipedia editor since 2015; Associate Professor of Philosophy at Monash University, Melbourne; leading world expert on women philosophers of early modern period.


Advisor Dr Patrick Spedding Spedding Wikipedia editor since 2006; Lecturer in English Literature and Associate Director of the Centre for the Book at Monash University, Melbourne; leading expert on writers of the early modern period
Advisor Mia Goodwin MLG1221 Librarian (Rare Books), and Subject Librarian, Linguistics, Literary Studies, and Spanish and Latin American Studies (Acting) at Monash University; completing PhD on early modern French women writers
Advisor Dr Marilyn Stendera The june frost Early career researcher in philosophy, has worked at the University of Melbourne and Monash University. Has project management experience, participated in ResearcHer (for Melbourne Wikipedians).
  • Volunteer willing to organize authors for the wikithon Lshape (talk) 04:13, 10 November 2018 (UTC)
  • Volunteer The history of women philoso- phers stretches back as far as

the history of philosophy itself. Valuable writings from female philosophers starting in antiquity, and a continuous tradition from the Renaissance until today, are proof of women’s essential contri- bution to philosophy. Names such as Aspasia, Hypatia, Elisabeth of Bohemia, Émilie Du Châtelet, Edith Stein, and Gerda Walther are part of women whose philosophical thoughts have in- fluenced the history of philosophy up to the present day. The Center emphasizes this long-lasting and rich tradition of women philoso- phers to be properly integrated in both the educational system, as well as the academic world. Ruth Hagengruber 77Minerva (talk) 12:39, 12 November 2018 (UTC)

  • Volunteer Valuable writings from female philosophers starting in antiquity, and a continuous tradition from the Renaissance until today, are proof of women’s essential contri- bution to philosophy. As director of the Center for the History of Women Philosophers ( we enhance the representation of women's intellectual history. Ruth Hagengruber (talk) 12:52, 12 November 2018 (UTC)
  • Volunteer Valuable writings from female philosophers starting in antiquity, and a continuous tradition from the Renaissance until today, are proof of women’s essential contri- bution to philosophy. As director of the Center for the History of Women Philosophers ( we enhance the representation of women's intellectual history. HWPS (talk) 12:58, 12 November 2018 (UTC)
  • Volunteer Writing/editing entries; contributing to options for using Wikidata to support project activities. Chrismeyns (talk) 17:16, 12 November 2018 (UTC)
  • Volunteer I might create biographical material on some lesser-known members of the Margaret Cavendish circle. Jimfitzmaurice (talk) 15:39, 13 November 2018 (UTC)

Community notification[edit]

You are responsible for notifying relevant communities of your proposal, so that they can help you! Depending on your project, notification may be most appropriate on a Village Pump, talk page, mailing list, etc.--> Please paste links below to where relevant communities have been notified of your proposal, and to any other relevant community discussions. Need notification tips?

We will be sending out notifications through the following:

  • Contact list of volunteers for edit-a-thon
  • Philosophy mailing lists: Australasian Association of Philosophy, Australasian Society for Continental Philosophy, Philos-L (global philosophy noticeboard)
  • Eighteenth-Century Interdisciplinary Online Discussion Forum
  • Society for the History of Authorship, Reading and Publishing mailing list


Do you think this project should be selected for a Project Grant? Please add your name and rationale for endorsing this project below! (Other constructive feedback is welcome on the discussion page).

  • This is a great project. Most people can name a woman philosopher from the twentieth century—perhaps Simone de Beauvoir or Iris Murdoch or the wonderful Mary Midgley who died only last month—but few non-specialists can name a woman philosopher from three or four hundred years ago. Adding further names and details to Wikipedia is a great way to bring specialist academic knowledge to the wider public and to show that the history of philosophy has been a gender-inclusive enterprise for many generations now. Jpaarons (talk) 20:39, 7 November 2018 (UTC)
  • This is a wonderful project from an accomplished and excellent group of researchers. As a researcher in early modern philosophy, I think the lack of awareness of the women philosophers of the era is a crucial issue for the discipline. If our aim is having an accurate representation of knowledge and its history, then spreading awareness of these under-studied figures is of top importance.

As a teacher of philosophy, I frequently point my students to articles on Wikipedia as a good starting point for their learning. Well-researched and authoritative Wikipedia pages often make the job of preparing and teaching classes much easier. As such I believe this project addresses a significant gap in the knowledge Wikipedia is currently presenting, and will make a lasting contribution by making what is now specialist knowledge available to the general public. 04:52, 8 November 2018 (UTC)

  • This project addresses an important gap and inequality in the site. It will be run by a wonderful team of committed academics who will work collaboratively to address the issue and broaden the appeal of Wikipedia. 2001:388:608C:4C03:3178:D404:39D5:B988 06:30, 8 November 2018 (UTC)
  • As a writer and a teacher of philosophy, and an expert of the works of 18th century French women philosophers, I am everyday confronted by two facts. First women in the history of philosophy, and in particular the Early Modern period, produced incredible works, which have the potential (a potential that was sometimes realized and then forgotten) of revolutionizing the way we think about issues in ethics, politics, metaphysics and science. Secondly, I am struck every time I want to look into the works of a particular woman, by how hard it is to access even the most basic, reliable information, let alone a description of her work or links to her texts. There are specialists websites attempting to remedy this. But everyone's first port of call, including mine, is Wikipedia. So this is clearly where we need to start bringing back these women and their work and making them accessible to students, teachers and the public in general. AnkaraAxiothea (talk) 08:57, 8 November 2018 (UTC)
  • For the reasons specified in the proposal. 09:23, 8 November 2018 (UTC)
  • the history of philosphy is incomplete without the work of women philosophers. try to close that gap. Heiko Wolf (talk) 09:55, 8 November 2018 (UTC)
  • This is so overdue - the WORLD NEEDS THIS! I am delighted to see this team put in the time to develop this project. LisaCurtis-Wendlandt (talk) 11:38, 8 November 2018 (UTC)
  • As a historian of early modern philosophy, and one who is interested in expanding and diversifying the canon so that it actually includes those who contributed to the philosophical debates of the 16th-18th centuries, I see this project of the highest importance. I'm so very glad this is happening and look forward to finding out about ways I can participate as the project unfolds. 2601:449:4500:E848:1C5D:B512:5ACB:8C4E 13:42, 8 November 2018 (UTC)
  • This project is long overdue: as part of our work for Project Vox, our students have often found major gaps in Wikipedia when it comes to writing and philosophy done by women during the 17th and 18th centuries. They have also often found inaccurate information that needs to be corrected. 2620:0:690:7821:AC6E:62DF:BF48:6741 14:38, 8 November 2018 (UTC)
  • I'm a scholar in the history of philosophy, and this is a badly needed addition to encyclopedic knowledge. 17:15, 8 November 2018 (UTC)
  • As a Philosophy teacher, I know my students use Wikipedia as a source of information. Women philosophers are very much under representated in it. 17:56, 8 November 2018 (UTC)
  • I routinely teach a third-year course entitled Women in Early Modern Philosophy and include 3-4 women philosophers in my second-year Survey of Early Modern Philosophy course. Because so few reliable and accessible resources are available on many of these figures, it is difficult to direct the students to additional materials. This is especially true for figures only mentioned in my lectures or discussions with students because they intersect with the assigned material. The addition of new resources, especially resources that will reliably present the philosophical content of these thinkers' works would be a significant advance. I whole-heartedly endorse this project as important, timely, and interesting.

Benjamin Hill Associate Professor of Philosophy The University of Western Ontario 19:18, 8 November 2018 (UTC)

  • I'm currently teaching a philosophy course that incorporates many early modern women philosophers, and my students keep pointing out to me how surprised to are they find that many of the authors we are reading are not represented on Wikipedia at all. So it would be great if by the time I teach this course again next year, my students could find them here! 21:38, 8 November 2018 (UTC)
  • I am a professor at a private liberal arts college in the North Eastern US. When I teach Early Modern Philosophy, students are always most excited about discovering, reading, and engaging with the works of the women of the period. Students routinely use Wikipedia as a first resource to get a lay of the land on their areas of interest and study. It would be wonderful if Wikipedia had a more complete set of entries devoted to the works of women in the period. But that's not all - as someone who is interested in expanding the scope of my research to include more understudied thinkers, a deeper and broader set of Wikipedia entries on early modern women will be invaluable. These are instrumental goods, of course, but it is also a good in itself to having a more complete and accurate picture of who was active in the period. 2601:197:900:2BEA:57B:18CE:AC10:4263 21:42, 8 November 2018 (UTC)
  • I am a researcher on women philosophers and it would be a great help to have trustworthy articles on Wikipedia. 23:28, 8 November 2018 (UTC)
  • This is a very important project: it will provide compelling evidence that women philosophers and other women thinkers/writers during the early modern period made important contributions to philosophy that are routinely overlooked. I endorse this project with great enthusiasm. Nancybauer (talk) 23:32, 8 November 2018 (UTC)
  • This is a great idea and long overdue. This matters for the accuracy of these entries and for equity. 2001:388:608C:4C03:1469:A1F7:563A:61DF 00:50, 9 November 2018 (UTC)
  • This will be an important project in contributing to amending gender imbalance in Wikipedia entries as well as contributing to greater recognition of female thinkers in history. 2001:388:608C:4C03:6C53:8B64:AB7B:2AE3 00:51, 9 November 2018 (UTC)
  • It's really important for Wikipedia to address the gender imbalance in its coverage of historical figures. 2001:388:608C:4C03:C41:EE51:8260:8083 00:52, 9 November 2018 (UTC)
  • This is an extremely interesting project, which I wholeheartedly endorse! 01:06, 9 November 2018 (UTC)
  • This is an excellent project that should be supported. Gender ratios in philosophy are closer to those in STEM subjects than those in other areas of humanities. As young women start out in philosophy, its disheartening to discover the lack of recognition of the role that women have played in the history of philosophy and in the discipline today. Having a wider and deeper representation of women in philosophy on wikipedia will help to combat the sense that philosophy is basically the domain of men. I strongly endorse this project as it will finally (!) provide basic and accurate information about the many women who have contributed to philosophy, and provide a different sense of the discipline for anyone studying and working in the field, as well as beyond.
  • As a teacher and researcher in the history of philosophy, it is at present difficult to easily introduce students to early modern women philosophers. This project will significantly help to enable student engagement with an important and under-acknowledged part of philosophy's history. 02:26, 9 November 2018 (UTC)
  • What a good idea! 03:20, 9 November 2018 (UTC)
  • I use Wikipedia in my teaching; it would be great to have more resources on Wikipedia about early modern women philosophers. 2001:388:608C:4C03:E95B:298:3536:17D2 04:47, 9 November 2018 (UTC)
  • I am a professor at a Dutch university; my students use WIkipedia all the time, and more resources on female philosophers would be very welcome. 08:55, 9 November 2018 (UTC)
  • As a teacher of first year university students, as well as a researcher, such a project would have significant benefits for not only the exposure of early modern women philosophers (and writers) but the ability for students to readily access this information. 10:42, 9 November 2018 (UTC)
  • As a philosopher working specifically in the field of early women's philosophy, and as a frequent user of Wikipedia for background information and sources, I would see a great personal benefit in much improving Wikipedia's coverage of early women writers - but more importantly, it will have a significant social benefit. We risk propagating false and harmful images of the past when we allow old-made imbalances to remain in place. 15:39, 9 November 2018 (UTC)
  • This is a timely and wonderfully conceived project. I both write and teach on the history of philosophy. I have a special interest in the contribution made by historical women, as do my students who are often excited and surprised to learn just how rich and extensive that contribution is. For all of us, students and academics alike, Wikipedia is invariably our first port of call. Comprehensive and in-depth articles on these figures who are often not well known would be a tremendous asset. More broadly, the inclusion of articles of this kind would dispell the widespread misconception that philosophy is and has been an exclusively male pursuit. 16:57, 9 November 2018 (UTC)
  • As a person with a PhD in philosophy with a focus on early modern women philosophers, and who is also writing a book about them, I would love to see more thorough, expertly-informed articles on them. Wikipedia is often the first source I turn to for numerous topics, and it would be wonderful if the entries for women philosophers were up to date and, in many cases, even existed. As an educator, I would also like a place where my students could reliably go to collect initial information on these thinkers. 19:46, 9 November 2018 (UTC)
  • As someone who teaches introductory philosophy courses at an Australian university, I recognise the need for a good source of readily accessible information that attributes to women philosophers the proper contribution that they have made to the discipline, and to intellectual progress in general. This is particularly important for wikipedia, as it is still the most likely starting point for any first year level student embarking on research. 03:36, 10 November 2018 (UTC)
  • There is real momentum right now to research and learn about women philosophers of the past. There is very little reliable information available. A wiki-thon to build loci of information would be a boon, presenting a more historically accurate picture of our intellectual past, recognizing diversity among philosophers, and building on existing momentum and getting students more involved. Lshape (talk) 04:12, 10 November 2018 (UTC)
  • I teach and research early modern women's literature at a UK university. Early modern women authors have generated deep public interest attested to by the recent Globe Theatre's critically acclaimed production of Emilia, a play about the Renaissance poet Aemilia Lanyer as well as Siri Hustvedt's novel, which was inspired by writer and philosopher Margaret Cavendish (1623-73) and was long listed for the Booker Prize, the Man Booker Prize and won the 2015 Los Angeles Times Book Prize for fiction. Yet, it is remarkable that there are few publicly available resources for people to learn about women writers of this period. This shows that there is a serious gap in publicly available knowledge that needs to be addressed. Similarly, while teaching I have found that there are few introductory resources available for me to direct my students to. It is strange that scholars can find a plethora of academic books and articles published about early modern women writers, but the public has little recourse for finding information about these figures. This wikipedia page is a great idea and is much needed. 12:38, 10 November 2018 (UTC)
  • As a professor, my students often go to Wikipedia for context on the historical authors we teach, as well as to find out information about people writing in the period who we aren't discussing directly in class. It would be ideal if my students could see more information about early modern women writers! 19:29, 10 November 2018 (UTC)
  • I am an associate professor of philosophy at Georgetown University. I teach history of early modern philosophy on a regular basis. I've been trying to diversify my syllabus and include some new, non-canonical figures each time. To show the students that philosophers are human beings too, I ask them to research and present intellectual biographies of the philosophers. They take this task very seriously. As with their other research projects, they typically begin with wikipedia and deepen their research from there. But this method would not work in cases where wikipedia has nothing to say about the women philosophers. So, wikipedia should catch up with what I take to be a practically inevitable and quickly growing trend in the field: the women philosophers are here to stay in our syllabi and the students want to find out more about them. 20:51, 10 November 2018 (UTC)
  • In my own research I often use Wikipedia as a quick guide. It would be wonderful to see quality resources for women thinkers in the Early Modern period. 2001:569:71BF:5F00:700F:272B:D463:10BC 02:03, 11 November 2018 (UTC)
  • This is a timely project and very well thought out - proposed by a fantastic team that is well poised to make this work. As a female philosopher who also teaches philosophy, I would love to see early modern female philosophers more strongly represented on wikipedia. Philosophy continues to be a male-dominated field, and acknowledging the work of female philosophers, especially on wikipedia, will make an impression, especially on students. 10:34, 11 November 2018 (UTC)
  • The works of women writers and philosophers in the early modern period are starting to get a lot more attention than they used to. And with good reason! They have been neglected for too long. Given the wealth of recent publications on these authors, it is high time to overhaul their entries on Wikipedia to reflect the latest scholarship. Many entries are outdated, missing, or incomplete. 18:43, 11 November 2018 (UTC)
  • An important project to improve and enhance what is already a significant source of information concerning early modern women philosophers. Could be extended both backwards and forwards in time in order to truly reflect the significant impact of female philosophers on the development of contemporary philosophical and political ideas. Kahgreen (talk) 02:34, 12 November 2018 (UTC)
  • There is a striking gender imbalance in philosophy as a whole, as well as in Wikipedia's coverage of it. (That is, Wikipedia's coverage of philosophy seems to be even more biased against taking women seriously than the discipline itself is, and the discipline itself is already biased.) This project will help address the underlying bias in philosophy by directly correcting bias in Wikipedia, one of the main sources used by beginners in philosophy. 03:52, 12 November 2018 (UTC)
  • I lecture philosophy and I'm very conscious that often the first place students go to begin their research is Wikipedia. If they only encounter entries on male philosophers they will get a distorted impression of the history of philosophy as well as miss out on the insights of half the species. 10:14, 12 November 2018 (UTC)
  • The history of women philoso- phers stretches back as far as

the history of philosophy itself. Valuable writings from female philosophers starting in antiquity, and a continuous tradition from the Renaissance until today, are proof of women’s essential contri- bution to philosophy. Names such as Aspasia, Hypatia, Elisabeth of Bohemia, Émilie Du Châtelet, Edith Stein, and Gerda Walther are part of women whose philosophical thoughts have in- fluenced the history of philosophy up to the present day. The Center emphasizes this long-lasting and rich tradition of women philoso- phers to be properly integrated in both the educational system, as well as the academic world. Ruth Hagengruber Center for the History of Women Philosophers 77Minerva (talk) 12:38, 12 November 2018 (UTC)

  • Valuable writings from female philosophers starting in antiquity, and a continuous tradition from the Renaissance until today, are proof of women’s essential contri- bution to philosophy. As director of the Center for the History of Women Philosophers ( we enhance the representation of women's intellectual history. Ruth Hagengruber (talk) 12:52, 12 November 2018 (UTC)
  • Valuable writings from female philosophers starting in antiquity, and a continuous tradition from the Renaissance until today, are proof of women’s essential contri- bution to philosophy. As director of the Center for the History of Women Philosophers ( we enhance the representation of women's intellectual history. HWPS (talk) 12:58, 12 November 2018 (UTC)
  • As a teaching assistant for a applied health ethics course, I often send my students to Wikipedia if they want a simple and straightforward explanation of a topic. I support this project and think that improving visibility of women philosophers would be an excellent idea and help create a more well-rounded body of literature here on Wikipedia! 2001:569:71BF:5F00:4536:59D2:DE8E:45B8 16:33, 12 November 2018 (UTC)
  • Solid plan which will deliver some much needed change by improving the visibility of women philosophers on Wikipedia. Chrismeyns (talk) 17:12, 12 November 2018 (UTC)
  • I teach political philosophy at a European university. As my area of specialization lies in contemporary contintental theory, I greatly rely on sources such as wikipedia in getting background knowledge on early modern authors; in order to diversify my teaching, it would be great to have more information on women writers available on wikipedia (linked to relevant (male) canonical thinkers). Furthermore, wikipedia is the go-to source for my students, being open-source and written in an accessible style; to have more women writers on here would give them a more adequate impression of the contribution made by female thinkers. I cannot support this editon enough. 19:04, 12 November 2018 (UTC)
  • This project will greatly increase visibility around a vibrant and important movement to correct the history of western philosophy by including women who contributed to that history. 2607:F470:E:B:2D03:5561:28BC:A320 22:49, 12 November 2018 (UTC)
  • As someone striving to include more women philosophers in my courses and to explain to my male colleagues why these philosophers are important, I would love to see more information about these thinkers in an open-source format. It is essential that these articles be put together by those with expertise on these thinkers and experience teaching and writing about them. The people proposing this project are exactly the right people to organize this task. 02:23, 13 November 2018 (UTC)
  • Insofar as Wikipedia aims to capture what is known about the history of philosophy, this project will surely serve that end: getting it right requires us to acknowledge the voices that have been excluded from the canon. 2606:5580:30A:7FEB:A58F:4F1E:2520:3C52 04:48, 13 November 2018 (UTC)
  • This is a much-needed project. Early modern women's intellectual contributions are generally overlooked. In my history classes, I regularly discuss women who were natural philosophers or writers; students are often surprised at the wide range of activities that women undertook in the past. In my own research into a large body of medical-scientific correspondence (, I've come across an even wider range of lesser-known women who contributed to natural philosophy behind-the-scenes. There is a long history of overlooking women's activities--often because of a very narrow definition of what writing or philosophy should look like. An edit-a-thon offers an opportunity to recover these lost stories and for Wikipedia to reflect a much broader definition of what knowledge-creation is. 11:58, 13 November 2018 (UTC)
  • There is much new material on the subject of Early Modern Women Writers that needs to be made available to the general public. Jimfitzmaurice (talk) 15:38, 13 November 2018 (UTC)
  • As a researcher and teacher in the history of philosophy, I wholeheartedly support this project. This project is a much-needed addition in order to bring Wikipedia up to date with the current state of research in the field. 2001:569:7A20:2800:1487:38BF:744D:CB72 18:27, 13 November 2018 (UTC)
  • I regularly teach History of Modern European Philosophy at a university in the United States. Although many women made incredible contributions to philosophy in the 17th and 18th centuries, they continue to be underrepresented in discussions of the era. Many of my students use Wikipedia to gain background information on topics and time periods, and increasing the visibility of women philosophers on Wikipedia will provide them with access to important contributions in modern European thought. 19:03, 13 November 2018 (UTC)
  • As a philosophy professor at a major state-funded university in California, I regularly teach Modern Philosophy. In doing so, I often direct my students to Wikipedia when they do a project called Exploring the Canon. As part of this project, they do web-based study of under-researched philosophers of the period. They then connect the ideas of these thinkers with those currently in the canon. It would be fantastic if there were more Wikipedia articles on women philosophers during this time. 23:14, 13 November 2018 (UTC)
  • This project is a great idea, and greatly needed. I teach philosophy at an American college, and I research and publish on early modern women philosophers. One of my goals as both a researcher and a teacher is to change the perception that women have not historically been engaged with philosophy and to get the word out about their works and ideas. Additional entries on the women philosophers currently not represented on Wikipedia, and better entries on the women who are already represented, will really help with that goal. I am eager to see the results of this very worthy project. 2602:306:CD9D:AA00:6842:940E:AE1B:343A 21:46, 14 November 2018 (UTC)
  • I am a philosophy student and it is frustrating how women are underrepresented in curriculum. It is difficult finding women philosophers whose work relates to a research question. This project will create a valuable starting point for undergraduates researching subjects and looking for philosophers not often included in the curriculum. 00:31, 15 November 2018 (UTC)
  • I am an academic at a large university in Australia. Since Wikipedia has become a public resource and is used extensively by students and the public more broadly, it is very important that the noted gender imbalance in its representation of significant female writers and philosophers should be addressed. This project aims to do that. The philosophers listed are not well known and information about their work is not readily available elsewhere. 2001:388:608C:4C03:78C0:40A1:D105:D817 00:36, 15 November 2018 (UTC)