Since 2018, this prize is sponsored by Professor Dr. Ulrike Detmers and awarded in cooperation with Professor Dr. Ruth Hagengruber, the director of the Center for the History of Women Philosophers and Scientists. “The Center for the History of Women Philosophers and Scientists is pleased and proud to join with Professor Detmers in awarding a prize that explicitly honors scholars whose work best acknowledges the contributions of women philosophers in history,” says Professor Dr. Ruth Hagengruber.
The Elisabeth of Bohemia Prize is intended to acknowledge an internationally known scholar whose work best preserves the memory of women in philosophy. “The awareness that women have contributed to the philosophical tradition is not very common. But it is important to celebrate our knowledge that women of past centuries were active philosophers who raised their voices and have been heard in former times,” explains Professor Ruth Hagengruber.
The prize is awarded to an outstanding contemporary philosopher in memory of Elisabeth of Bohemia (1618-1680). She was the eldest daughter of Prince Friedrich V. of the Palatinate and his wife Elisabeth Stuart, a granddaughter of Maria Stuart. In her time Elisabeth of Bohemia was also a well-known European intellectual and pupil of Descartes. “I have been fighting for many years to ensure that women get the place in society that they deserve,” says Professor Ulrike Detmers. “It is important to raise awareness about women in the history of philosophy and thereby to revitalize the relevance of the philosophical discipline.”
This year’s laureate of the Elisabeth of Bohemia Prize, donated by Ulrike Detmers, is Prof. em. Mary Ellen Waithe (Cleveland State University, Ohio). She was awarded with the prize during the Closing Ceremony of the Libori Summer School 2019.
Mary Ellen Waithe is the author of the ground-breaking book series “A History of Women Philosophers”, published from 1987 to 1995, from ancient to contemporary women philosophers. With this work, she was the first to publish a book dedicated solely to women philosophers and a pioneer in the field of study on women philosophers. Her dedication motivated many others to join her cause and the project provided a much-needed impulse to further the recognition of women philosophers. The series presents an unparalleled contribution to the research on women in the history of philosophy and is extremely relevant to this day. The Center for the History of Women Philosophers and Scientists, under the direction of Prof. Ruth Hagengruber, is proud to honor such an important effort to restore women’s contributions to the history of philosophy.
The Call for Papers for the Elisabeth of Bohemia Prize 2019 can be found here.
Award Committee 2019:
Donor: Ulrike Detmers (Bielefeld University)
The winner, Professor Lisa Shapiro (Simon Frazer University, Canada), was announced on May 19, 2018, during the conference ‘Elisabeth of Bohemia (1618-1680): Life and Legacy’ celebrating the fourth centenary of her birth. The conference was sponsored by the Fritz Thyssen Stiftung with the support of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Philosophie, the DFG Arbeitsgruppe, ‘Frauen in der Geschichte der Philosophie’ and the Center for the History of Women Philosophers and Scientists, Paderborn University.
“I am very honored to receive the first Ulrike Detmers Elisabeth of Bohemia and Herford Prize, recognizing my efforts in making accessible and in understanding the philosophical views of Princess Elisabeth.
The Ulrike Detmers Elisabeth of Bohemia Prize demonstrates a similar vision for recognizing the work being done to raise awareness about women in the history of philosophy and thereby to revitalize the discipline. We are at an important moment right now, with work being done by so many people, including the important work of Prof. Dr. Ruth Hagengruber and the Centre for the History of Women Philosophers and Scientists at Paderborn University, to rehabilitate the work of women philosophers throughout our history.
Thank you, Professor Detmers, for creating this award and to the awards committee for this great honour.”
– Lisa Shapiro
Award Committee 2018:
Donor: Ulrike Detmers (Bielefeld University)
Prof. Dr. Sarah Hutton (University of York), member of the award committee, interviews Prof. Dr. Lisa Shapiro (Simon Frazer University Canada), the winner of the first Elisabeth of Bohemia and Herford Prize 2018.