The Dialogue of Disciplines
- New Horizons in Leadership Studies series
Edited by Michael Harvey and Ronald E. Riggio
Chapter 5: Handmaiden and Queen: What Philosophers Find in the Question: “What is a Leader?”
5. Handmaiden and queen: what philosophers find in the question: “what is a leader?” Joanne B. Ciulla The word “philosophy” was born when the Greek philosopher and mathematician Pythagoras of Samos (572-497 BC) was asked if he thought he was a wise man. He answered no, he was merely a lover of wisdom – a phileo sophia.1 The philosophers who came after him were not as humble. Since philosophy was the study of just about everything, they dubbed it the “queen of the sciences”. Philosophy reigned supreme until Christian times when the theologian Clement of Alexandria (150–215?AD) demoted philosophy from the “queen” of the sciences to the “handmaid of theology”.2,3 The Enlightenment philosopher John Locke (1632–1704) also regarded philosophy as a “handmaid” – but to the sciences. He said that the job of philosophy is to clarify assumptions, concepts and definitions, and interpret, analyze and synthesize the results of the sciences (Locke, 1961). Locke clearly describes what it means to do philosophy; however, he did not think that philosophy consisted of a distinctive body of truth. Most philosophers agree that philosophy is a handmaiden, yet there are areas in which it still holds claim to the throne, most notably in logic and (despite the best efforts of theologians) ethics.4 The other classical divisions of philosophy are metaphysics, which is concerned with the character of reality; epistemology, or the study of the nature, origins, and extent of knowledge; and aesthetics, which is about the assumptions behind our judgments...
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.
Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.
Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.