The Book

the Emperor Has a Body - Body Politics in the Between

From Javelina Books...

The Emperor Has a Body: Body Politics in the Between.

More info at

6'x9'; 320 pages

S. Elise Peeples

Women's Studies/Philosophy


$16.95 (0-9654418-2-2)

Distributors: & us!


emperor front cover

A Conversation with the author...



"The Emperor Has a Body is a welcome addition to the literature... It is a particularly valuable book since many critiques remain shrouded in obscure language, inaccessible to the many people who are looking for alternatives. Elise, with her depth of philosophical background exposes the emperor in terms that many will find easy to understand." — Don Hanlon Johnson, author of Body

Male/female, human/environment, mind/body, white/black...


Western culture is built on the assumption that these either/or splits are real - and that one of each pair is better than its so-called opposite. Elise Peeples exposes the artificiality of these divisions, using her own version of the Emperor's New Clothes fairytale as a starting point.

Peeples then advocates "bewholing" the world with a new approach called the Between model. The Between is the shared space between us, between mind and body and humans and their environment.

"The Between is where we overflow the boundaries of either/or. It is all that has fallen into the chasm created by splitting the whole. It is vital and alive with creativity and possibility... This model provides a way to envision what, in our linear mindset, we might call paradox. We are together and separate at the same time." — from The Emperor Has a Body

The Between model gives us a new perspective on diverse issues including the women's movement, abortion/adoption, motherhood, ethics, language, and environmental issues. We become the mirrors for the emperor, the pranksters playing with language, and the weavers of "new clothes" fit for all of us.


About the Author

Elise Peeples holds degrees in psychology and philosophy, is trained as a paralegal, and has practiced community mediation for 15 years. Peeples is Executive Director of Art Between Us, Inc., a California non-profit corporation. Her publication credits include Strands, a novel (Eshu House Publishing, Berkeley: 2010), When Things Happen to People: The Field Beyond Good and Bad, a memoir about her encounter with breast cancer (Eshu House Publishing, Berkeley: 2011), The Speed of Love, poetry and photos (Createspace, 2013), articles on mediation and philosophy, as well as fiction and poetry. Peeples is a resident of Berkeley, California.

The Emperor Has a Body is the fruit of a seed that first germinated with her graduate work in philosophy at San Francisco State University. Drawing from her varied experiences as a social worker, mediator and paralegal, Peeples developed a new theory for analyzing gender inequity, legal issues, environmental concerns and ethics. Peeples writes, "Just as my life has followed interlocking trajectories in psychological, philosophical and diversity/political work, so too is this book a mediation among those realms."

Not wanting to write a book that was inaccessible to most people who have not studied philosophy, Peeples omitted academic jargon and included her own experience to add depth to her ideas. The idea of using the Emperor's New Clothes fairy tale as a motif emerged through this approach.

"I knew that I had accomplished my goal of inclusivity," Peeples writes, "when after a talk I gave from the book, a middle-aged African American woman came up to me and said, "I know as a philosopher you could have chosen the academic route - I'm glad you chose a route that included me."

A Conversation with the author...

About the Publisher

Javelina Books publishes fiction and nonfiction by women. We promote writing that challenges us, that comforts us, and that presents us with new ways of understanding our world. Javelina believes in the power of women's words to heal and to transform.

In an age of much discussion about the future of independent publishing, Javelina continues to strive toward that which smaller presses are best at: finding and promoting new women writers, introducing new ideas, and taking the risk of being passionate. The press borrows its name from the Javelina, one of the desert's hardiest creatures, honoring her earthly spirit and her perseverance.

For more information, contact:

S. Elise Peeples, Author

Art Between Us, Inc.
P.O. Box 162
Berkeley, California 94701