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Femaleness and U.S. Family Law

Helen Alvare

The  Church has identified herself as an “expert in humanity” [1]. But who has the temerity to claim to be an expert in the female half of humanity?  The complete identity of the female—call it the nature of ‘femaleness’—is hidden in the complex body-soulunity which constitutes the human person.  And so an understanding of the female body is one key to unlock this complex reality.  But an understanding of the body is not enough to understand the person.  Although human persons are always bodily and human bodies always personal, persons are not reducible to their bodies. Theyare their bodies, but they are more than their bodies, because the animating principle that makes their bodies to be living bodies is a non-material soul. But is there such thing as a properly female soul”?  Can spirit per se be engendered? These are weighty questions.

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