Roger Peters Copyright © 2005
The Quaternary Investigation into the Evolution Toward the Uniqueness in Shakespeare
How the originary female is biologically constitutional,
and why female priority should be politically constitutional
Two earlier revolutions in thinking
Over the last 500 years, two revolutions in thinking have dramatically
upended our understanding of the world. The common denominator in
each of the transformations has been the dethroning of biblical preconceptions about the Earth we live on.
In both cases, the momentous change occurs only after the evidence in
favour reaches a critical mass. Until then, ideas basic to the critical shift in
thinking lie dormant in the culture for hundreds of years.
The first about-face in biblical presumptions happens when Galileo
turns the newly invented telescope to the heavens in the early 1600s. He
confirms Copernicus’ theoretical calculations from the early sixteenth
century that show the solar system is heliocentric, not geocentric.
Suddenly, planet Earth, the seven-day creation of an omnipotent
mind-marooned God, is no longer the centre of the world – much less the
universe. Galileo’s scientific confirmation of long-held speculations is so
disruptive to the received view the Catholic Church places him under
house arrest and forbids him to publish for the rest of his life.
Despite compliant astronomers like Galileo’s contemporary Tycho
Brahe manipulating the results of their observations to placate an
autocratic Church, eventually the heliocentricity of the solar system –
and a new understanding of the universe – predominates over traditional
The second fundamental back down for biblical beliefs comes when
Darwin publishes The Origin of Species and The Descent of Man. He shows
definitively ‘man’ is not a special creation of an almighty imaginary God
– in His own image – but a species that evolves over millions of years in
a line of descent that includes fishes and apes. Darwin’s meticulous
research, after years of observations on the Beagle and even more time
studying domesticated species, rewrites biblical claims a male God creates
the world – and ‘man’.
Darwin’s findings provide the critical mass that confirms thoughts held
by thinkers since the Greeks up to and including his grandfather Erasmus
Darwin. The initial response to Darwin’s revelations is both acclaim at his
standard of proof and dismay and denial by the Churches, some of whom
hold out until late in the twentieth century before giving in to the
Again, humankind’s sense of place in the universe and its fate on Earth
turns on its head. Biblical beliefs held so tenaciously for 4000 years prove
to be nothing than the fabrications of an over-zealous clergy and their
scribes – acting on behalf of an all too human sensation called God – to
assert control over a tithed congregation.
The double blow by Galileo and Darwin to male-based biblical
presumptions speaks to the dogged hold on the imagination of fantastic
beliefs. Moreover, the eventual consigning of such prejudices and injustices
to the biblical wilderness is a reminder the democracy of enlightenment
inevitably outshines blind faith.
A third about face for biblical verities
The title of this essay, From Male to Female, signals another defining
moment in the trend to upend traditional male-based mind-based
constructs. Although Galileo’s discoveries and Darwin’s investigations
involve reversals of long held views about the universe and the planet, they
do not go to the heart of the inconsistencies to challenge directly the
usurpation of female priority by male impropriety.
Again, the impetus for the impending turnabout of the long-standing
male/female inversion builds in the culture for hundreds of years, if not
millennia. More recently, the social movement toward democratic rights
for women adds its voice by challenging the great harm humankind
visits on females – and males – in the name of contrary male-based
However, it may prove that the crucial momentum for the third
revolution derives not from a female but from the consistent and comprehensive nature-based female-prioritising philosophy in the works of
William Shakespeare. Shakespeare, though, does benefit indirectly from
female input because it seems his wife, the older Anne Hathaway, guides
the younger man out of his adolescent idealism toward becoming a mature
and peerless dramatist and poet.
Shakespeare argues throughout all his works for the recovery of
nature-based female priority over male-based imposition of dominance.
Shakespeare’s previously unrecognized philosophy – hidden from view for
400 years by egotistic male-based prerogatives – provides the necessary
amplitude for a third revolution. Ideas circulating for hundreds of years
now have an indubitable voice that rings with irrefutable soundness.
To understand why Shakespeare’s philosophy remains unseen for 400
years requires the resort to an appropriately consistent and comprehensive
appreciation of how the human mind works in nature. Whereas Galileo
points his telescope to the heavens and Darwin voyages around life on
Earth, Shakespeare looks directly into the intellectual and imaginative
functions of the human mind.
By examining the way we understand the world through the senses,
language and inner sensations of the mind, Shakespeare shows why its
logical functions are a direct consequence of the female being the
precursor for the offshoot male in nature. Only by acknowledging the
natural female priority over the dependent male is it possible to
appreciate logically the isomorphic relationship of the human body and
The body/mind interface is crucial for grasping the philosophic
connectedness of human thinking to nature. Shakespeare’s natural logic
and sound arguments are incontrovertible for the relation of body to mind.
At the end of the sixteenth and the beginning of the seventeenth
centuries, Shakespeare argues without demur for the originary female to
gain her rightful place in relation to the offshoot male. While modern
biology now provides definitive evidence the female is the precursor for
the male, the scientific findings merely confirm Shakespeare’s philosophical
formulation of our natural female/male partnership.
In Shakespeare’s day, his shift from male-based to female-based
understanding and related expectations was a response to the murderous
cultural debacle of the Reformation. It is even timelier now when a global
demographic ensures the traditional male-dominant syndrome that
induces gratuitous violence can no longer find a place to hide within the
digital transparency of twenty-first century communications.
Shakespeare analyses the logic of myth
Understanding Shakespeare’s nature-based philosophy requires an
uncompromised insight into the deepest workings of the human mind. His
natural logic relates the way we receive incoming sensations to our use of
language consequent on those sensations. More significantly, he shows us
how to access the inner recesses of the mythic imagination, the confusion
and abuse of which generates male-based prejudices toward nature.
Galileo and Darwin’s astronomical and biological challenges to the
male-based mythic beliefs of the Bible do not begin to consider the logical
implications of our imaginative reconstructions of the world to suit our
ambitions and prejudices. Neither thinker investigates systematically the
male-based mythic constructs militating against them. Instead, each
remains dedicated to their scientific discoveries in astronomy and biology.
Despite the inhumane treatment Galileo receives from Pope and
Church, he remains a devout Catholic – even visiting miraculous shrines
for guidance. For Darwin’s part, although he forgoes his Christian faith, he
ruefully admits his exhaustive biological researches leave no time to muse
philosophically on the deeper reasons for biblical inconsistencies.
Shakespeare, 400 years ago, uniquely examines the philosophic depth
and breadth of the sensory and linguistic faculties of the mind. His
advantage is that by understanding the logic of the mythic imagination –
of which he is the unsurpassed master – he is able to align the natural
trajectory from sexual body to the sensory, thinking and erotically creative
mind with unmatched consistency and inspiration.
Shakespeare’s ability to penetrate to the erotic heart of myth derives
from his nature-based philosophy that contextualises all conceptual
constructs. Unlike the traditional biblical myth of creation, whose
geocentric orbit is sustained artificially by male-based constructs,
Shakespeare establishes a global panorama based in nature for his overview
of the female/male dynamic of the body that generates the natural logic
of the human mind.
In 1609 Shakespeare publishes the 154-sonnet set titled Shake-speares
Sonnets to present the nature-based philosophy behind all thirty-six plays
in the 1623 Folio and his four longer poems. The logical structure of the
154 sonnets can be represented in the Nature template derived from
Shakespeare’s arrangement of the set.
Shakespeare bases his Sonnet philosophy on the external nature-to-
female/male dynamic that contextualises the inner workings of the human
intellect and emotions. The consistent application of his nature-based
Sonnet philosophy throughout the 1623 Folio of thirty-six plays and his
four longer poems demonstrates the fecundity and cogency of reclaiming
humankind’s birthright orientation within nature.
In his day, Shakespeare issues a logical and dramatic challenge to the
combative culture of Reformation sects. His plays, particularly, argue
forcefully for the forswearing of male-based mind-based conflict and the
recovery of the natural conciliatory partnership of originary female and
Shakespeare’s unique combination of natural givens and thought-provoking intelligence and passion invokes from his contemporaries and
seventeenth century admirers a deep but barely understood regard and
respect. Unfortunately, the consequent response of blind idolisation
coupled with textual interference in the Sonnets and Folio remains the
Tertiary standard right into the twenty-first century.
(See earlier volumes and essays for a comprehensive discussion of
Shakespeare’s Sonnet philosophy as the basis for all his plays and poems and
its implications for a global constituency.)
Marcel Duchamp independently reiterates Shakespeare’s female/male
The only other artist besides Shakespeare to plumb the depths of the
natural logic of mythic expression and demonstrate his competency in a
dedicated artwork is Marcel Duchamp. In the early twentieth century,
Duchamp creates a large work on glass that captures the same prerequisite
female-to-male biology evident in Shakespeare’s previously unprecedented insight into the natural logic of myth. (See earlier volumes and
essays for discussion of Duchamp’s The Bride Stripped Bare by Her Bachelors,
Even – and his final work Etant donnes that repeats the mythic exposé).
While Duchamp only partially replicates Shakespeare’s depth and
breadth of philosophic insight into the female/male dynamic and its
implications, they share the core realisation that the female’s biological
priority over the male has ramifications for all artistic expression. Their
brilliant appreciation of the philosophic basis of myth supersedes the
traditional corruption of mythic logic by male-based mind-based
mythologies like the biblical.
The deep irony, an irony Duchamp recognises in comments about his
own work, is that Shakespeare and Duchamp receive centuries/decades of
hagiographic praise for their achievements while being completely
misunderstood. Worse, while being stood on pedestals, the achievement of
each is trivialised or denigrated by prejudicial alteration or misattribution.
The common denominator that drives the disturbing combination of
adulation and denigration for both artists is their unflinching recognition
of the originary status of the female and the derivative status of the male.
The puzzling response to their works comes down to an unwillingness or
refusal by admirers/dissemblers to recognise the influence of the ingrained
misogyny pervading their 4000-year-old male-based mind-based beliefs
What does the science say
Scientific research demonstrating the biology of the priority of female
to male is unequivocal. On all counts, the female has more attributes
from a precursor asexual species that gradually divides and evolves over
billions of years to become Homo sapiens – with its originary female
and offshoot male.
Whether it is mitochondrial DNA, parthenogenesis, childbearing,
residual sexual attributes, the default basis for genetic and hormonal sexual
differentiation, gender assignments, or other characteristics, the female is
always the encompassing entity for the subsidiary male. Like all sexual
species, humans are biologically and logically undeniably female-based.
Most science texts and online journals, etc., acknowledge the biological
priority of the female at some point. Yet it is also very common for such
texts to put the male first in their considerations and representations of the
male and female contributions to sexual reproduction. The otherwise
inexplicable about-face seems driven by an unscientific acceptance and
influence of the male-based biblical paradigm that still prevails in the culture.
Even in articles that accept the female/male priority – as in discussions
about the fact only females can undergo parthenogenesis – there is usually
a comforting comment at the end to the effect that males have nothing to
worry about, at least for now. It is the male’s universal evolutionary
inability to self-reproduce that leads to the valorising of imaginary forms
of cultural persistence typically in male-based religious beliefs like the
The degree to which the corrupt syndrome is inured in the culture is
evident when Jonathan Miller, a noted Shakespearean play producer who
is also a natural scientist, lends his name to a pop-up book The Facts of Life
(1984) that puts the male penis and testicles before the female vagina and
Since the practice of perverting, or at least equivocating about, the facts
of female priority is so pervasive across the scientific literature, little
wonder the literary world has not yet come to see that Shakespeare
presents in his 1609 Sonnets a more logically – and effectively scientific –
case for female precursorship.
Shakespeare’s analysis of the inconsistencies in biblical myth and his
recovery of a natural female-based mythic logic are as rigorous as any
research by a Galileo or Darwin. Moreover, Shakespeare’s nature-based
philosophy goes to the crux of the issue as it criticises the philosophical
apologetics at the heart of traditional religious fictions about ‘man’s’
superior place in the world.
How far is not far enough
So, what is Shakespeare doing when redressing the biblical inversion of the
natural female priority over male dominance that makes his work
potentially more revolutionary than Galileo or Darwin? To put it another
way, what have feminists and other activists for female rights and equality
not been doing if their protests fail to spark the profound and abiding
change in attitudes Galileo or Darwin’s discoveries incite?
As earlier comments infer, the momentum for a revolutionary change to
restore natural contingencies and overturn male-based injustices gathers in
the culture for many years. When Galileo and Darwin alter so profoundly
our preconceptions about the world we live in, they do not so much
challenge directly the social, political or religious prejudices that characterise the inverted view of the world.
Rather, they somewhat accidentally sidestep the psychological apologia
that passes for philosophy in the justification of biblical beliefs. By investigating nature at large, they recover our birthright natural philosophy or
logic – however intentionally or unintentionally.
When Galileo confirms empirically the theoretical calculations of
Copernicus by pointing the telescope to reveal the natural movements of
the planets, his discoveries eventually overturn religious beliefs – despite
own his fervent faith in an otherworldly God. Darwin, far more
intentionally, uses a philosophic method completely consonant with
observed facts to surmount biblical ideas about the origins and state of the
When we turn to feminists who argue for the natural role of women or
for female priority, they tend to do so from social, political, scientific or
religious standpoints rather than a penetrating philosophic analysis of the
offending male/female doctrines in biblical myth.
Two such feminists or advocates for female rights are Germaine Greer
and Riane Eisler. Greer is a polemicist who addresses issues largely through
self-publicising bombast. She is far more opportunistic than Eisler who is
more nearly philosophic in the cultural anthropological insights behind
Yet both women fail to appreciate the critique of male-based biblical
impositions in the works of Shakespeare. Greer, as a published Shakespeare
scholar, resorts to an interpretation based in Christian mythology when
Shakespeare’s devastating nature-based critique of patriarchal misogyny in
King Lear proves too difficult for her to comprehend.
Eisler, rather than appreciating that Shakespeare’s works provide the
most thoroughgoing criticism of male/female injustices consequent on
biblical beliefs, misses the sardonic irony in The Taming of the Shrew because
she does not understand the relationship of language and sensations to
No previous thinker, female or male, over the last 400 years has been
able to unravel Shakespeare’s brilliant and consistent philosophy of natural
female priority. Instead, the world awaits the realisation that in the works
of Shakespeare the needed critical mass is available to transform a
religiously divided world.
Why female priority is constitutional
Thomas Jefferson realises at the end of the eighteenth century that it
requires a Constitutional edict to place natural philosophy at the head of
all systems of belief – and no one else since has quite risen to the same
level of perspicacity. He appreciates that only nature has the required
singularity to correct the confusions arising from the psychology of
believing the biblical God is anything other than an imaginary first cause.
Jefferson, though, like everybody else, has no understanding of the
brilliant nature-based philosophy in the works of Shakespeare – and this
despite his lifelong interest in Shakespeare. His Deism prevents him from
making the necessary adjustments to give force to his bare intuition that
biblical beliefs should be kept from becoming the basis of power in a State.
It seems timely, then, to bring about a Constitutional change to whatever
set of edicts a country operates under, to include the natural fact of female
priority over the subsidiary male. The resulting Act would encourage
partnership rather than dominance by one sex or the other – as Riane
Eisler appreciates when she institutes the Partnership Way.
Because the issue of female rights is so fundamental to our natural being,
then the only just and effective way of ensuring its implementation and
expectations is by including those rights at the head of a new Constitution
or as an Amendment to an existing Constitution. Only then will the
biologically constitutional female/male priority become the legislative and
practical precondition for all aspects of a truly democratic constituency.
Roger Peters Copyright © 2017
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