Feminist Philosophers

News feminist philosophers can use

The Ethics of In-Vitro Flesh and Enhanced Animals July 22, 2014

Filed under: eating disorders,environmental issues,food,human rights — annejjacobson @ 1:56 pm

Abstracts and call for participation: The Ethics of In-Vitro Flesh and Enhanced Animals (sponsored by the Wellcome Trust)

When will this conference take place?
18-19 September 2014

Where will the conference be held?
Rothbury, Northumberland, England

The conference will take place at the Rothbury Golf Club, starting at 9.00 hrs on Thursday and finishing at 17.00 hrs on Friday.

Call for participation
Everyone who is willing to discuss the conference themes is invited to participate. As places are limited, early booking is advisable. Speakers will generally present papers in 30 mins, followed by 30 mins of discussion.

How do I register?
Registration is made by paying the fee of £ 30, using the following link: http://webstore.ncl.ac.uk/browse/extra_info.asp?compid=1&modid=2&catid=36&prodid=301
Registration includes the conference dinner on Thursday night, as well as lunches and refreshments on Thursday and Friday. Lunches will comprise a main course, with an option to purchase dessert. For any specific dietary or access requirements, please email Jacqueline.McAloon@ncl.ac.uk. Please note that, for administrative reasons, it is not possible to register for part of the conference. Please also email Jacqueline to inform her whether you would be interested in participating in an informal, pre-conference meeting for drinks and/or dinner on Wednesday evening.

Who are the speakers?
Bernice Bovenkerk, Philosophy Group, Wageningen University.
Amanda Cawston, Faculty of Philosophy and Downing College, University of Cambridge.
Jan Deckers, School of Medical Education, Newcastle University.
Clemens Driessen, Cultural Geography, Environmental Sciences Group, Wageningen University.
Arianna Ferrari, Institut für Technikfolgenabschätzung und Systemanalyse, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology.
Linnea Laestadius, School of Public Health, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
Clare McCausland, Human Rights & Animal Ethics Research Network, University of Melbourne.
John Miller, School of English, University of Sheffield.
Lars Øystein Ursin, Department of Public Health and General Practice, Norwegian University of Science and Technology.
Kay Peggs, School of Social, Historical and Literary Studies, University of Portsmouth.
G. Owen Schaefer, Lincoln College, University of Oxford.
Barry Smart, School of Social, Historical and Literary Studies, University of Portsmouth.
Cor van der Weele, Department of Communication, Philosophy and Technology, Wageningen University.
(more…)

 

Sylvia Earle: Oceanographer, Conservationist, and Scientist Extraordinaire June 19, 2013

Filed under: awards,bias,environmental issues,health,science — David Slutsky @ 3:12 pm

On June 13, the National Geographic Society awarded Sylvia Earle the Hubbard Medal, their highest honor, “for distinction in exploration, discovery and research”.

On June 14, National Geographic “asked Sylvia to discuss her experiences as a woman in a field previously considered a man’s world”.

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We can also find this three minute discussion embedded in a National Geographic News Watch piece (by Jane J. Lee) titled:
In Her Words: Sylvia Earle on Women in Science (click here for the news piece)
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Earle’s 2009 Ted Prize talk (reminding us about little things like action necessary to avoid extinction):

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Mission Blue (Sylvia Earle alliance)-click here!
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Plenty of excellent video clips available on the interwebs. This one seems very good:
Sylvia Earle: Legendary Explorer Fights to Save Underwater Paradise

 

Your daughter’s delicate ladybrain can’t handle ethical decision-making about food January 9, 2013

Filed under: environmental issues,family,gender stereotypes,health — magicalersatz @ 3:29 pm

I’m usually a fan of longtime Guardian favorite Hadley Freeman, so I was surprised to read the following, written in support of her assertion that parents shouldn’t let their daughters choose to become vegetarians.

When Lena Dunham announced that “a lot of times when you are a vegetarian it is a just not very effective eating disorder” she was duly pilloried. But speaking as someone who has been a vegetarian for 30 years and has a certain amount of knowledge about eating disorders, I’m going to defend Dunham here, even though she slightly missed the real point. Vegetarianism is not an ineffective eating disorder – it is a potential gateway to eating disorders.Obviously not all vegetarians become anorexic and not all anorexics are vegetarian (although in my experience, in regards to the latter part of that sentence, there is a heavy overlap). But vegetarianism encourages people to divide foods between the good and the bad, and it then becomes a legitimate means of limiting one’s diet. Your daughter has a whole lifetime ahead of her to think of food as something other than a pleasurable physical necessity. Why let her start early?

I really don’t know where to start with this. First, the suggestion that vegetarianism is “a potential gateway to eating disorders” seems to come out of nowhere (and has no evidential support, as far as I can tell). The thought that careful ethical consideration about food choices is the sort of thing that might lead to an eating disorder seems both to woefully misunderstand the pathology of disordered eating and to insult young women’s capacity to handle ethical decision-making. I’d have thought that a young woman who makes, for whatever reason, a conscious decision to avoid meat might be lead to, I don’t know, careful ethical consideration of other parts of her life. But apparently young women are just too delicate and fragile to handle the way in which “vegetarianism encourages people to divide foods between the good and the bad”. That’s just too much for girls. They’ll end up with an eating disorder, the poor things!

The idea that vegetarianism is “a gateway” to eating disorders manages to be disrespectful both to young women with eating disorders and young women who choose to become vegetarianism. It suggests of the former that their complex, multifaceted disease might be little more than the side-effect of confused thinking about food. And it suggests of the latter that they need to be protected from their own ability to consciously, deliberately think about the ethical implications of the food they eat. What nonsense.

(You can read Freeman’s article – on “How to Parent Girls” – here.)

 

Parents Versus Climate Change July 19, 2012

As someone who remains ambivalent about having children (and as someone with young nieces and nephews and friends with kids), this is a topic of deep personal concern to me, as I’m sure it is to many readers. The diagnosis of widespread ignorance and ‘soft denial’ seems pretty plausible, although chastising people for being bad parents seems to me fundamentally unhelpful. Plus, isn’t the sense of deep political powerlessness pretty well justified? It certainly seems that way in the current political and economic climate. For my part I find it very difficult to imagine a day when any government would place long-term interests like saving the planet ahead of short-term economic concerns, particularly when most governments are only in office for 5-10 years (though maybe this is just a tempting false dilemma…)

Your thoughts welcome, especially if you can think of a reason not to despair.

 

Meat-Eating and Male Critics May 5, 2012

As many of you know, the Sunday Times has had a contest to write the best essay defending meet eating. It came to a conclusion this weekend, and the winners are announced.

We mentioned before its all-male panel of judges. And in fact the ethicist recognizes concerns about diversity, in a rather odd context:

Reader Responses

The contest is sexist and racist

The panel [of judges] consists of all white men. . . . And so the cycle of prejudice continues in which white male elite perspectives dominate the production of social facts. LORI GRUEN, A. BREEZE HARPER, CAROL J. ADAMS

The contest is harmless

This is a panel of five, for heaven’s sake, for a meaningless contest. How diverse can it be? Why should anyone care how diverse it is? ETHICSALARMS.COM

So we decided to go to the Gruen, Harper and Adams piece to see why they thought diversity would be an improvement.

One fact is that one is starting out from a biased position with all-men panel, since our culture identifies men with meat-eating. Secondly, A group of white western men are going to bring partial and fairly shared perspective to what is in fact a global problem. Third, when one picks for fame – as the ethicist said she was doing – one tend to create a circle which the men close.

Interesting reasons, hardly meant to be inclusiveexhaustive (thanks, SH). What do you think?

 

Security, Protection, Self-Care: international Feminism’s agenda April 27, 2012

Apparently a good amount of international peace and justice activists’ discourse is focused these days on issues about security, protection and self-care. At the same time, it can be difficult for policy makers to have much sense of the immense range of responsibilities women’s lives can involve; plans for a nation can too often neglect or work against women’s interests. In responding to this problem, women working for the security and protection of women in developing countries have, over the last several decades, developed a very nuanced and detailed agenda. It is still evolving, of course, but the recent meeting in Istanbul of the Association of Women’s Rights in Development seems to me to suggest an exciting and maturing convergence of agendas.

There is so much going on; so many questions being raised, so many action plans being developed. Follow through on some of the links from the conference, and see what you think.

I’m told there was not much Western presence. I think that is a situation we should think about critically. Many of the problems being discussed are not regional.

 

Wangari Maathai, 1941-2011 September 26, 2011

The world has lost one of our greatest moral heroes. Wangari Maathai, April 1, 1941 – September 25, 2011.

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We may update this post when grief allows more personal words. For now, readers who do not know about this wonderful and truly extraordinary person can begin here:

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My favored links include these two:

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Can one woman save Africa?

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The Green Belt Movement

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For some recent reports of her passing, see here:

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Wangari Maathai, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, Dies at 71 (NY Times)

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Wangari Maathai: ‘My heart is in the land and women I came from’ (Guardian)

John Vidal, who met the Kenyan activist, recalls the person who turned planting trees into a worldwide symbol of hope

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Wangari Maathai: Death of a visionary (BBC)

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View and Share Condolences primarily here

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For a bit more, see here and here

 

Placenta Bear September 4, 2011

Filed under: environmental issues — Monkey @ 9:58 am

Having a baby? Wondering what to do with the placenta? Well, wonder no more! Designer Alex Green has designed a kit to help you turn your placenta into a ‘cute’ teddy you can give to your offspring. Weirdly, this is touted as an innovation in sustainable toys.

(Yes, this has been doing the rounds for a while, but I never claimed to be up to date with all the internet madness.)

Via Inhabitots.

 

Uncontacted tribe’s forest sprayed with chemical defoliant July 24, 2011

Filed under: environmental issues,global justice,human rights — Monkey @ 9:00 pm

A large stretch of Amazon forest in a region where uncontacted Indians are thought to be living, has reportedly been destroyed illegally with chemical defoliant sprayed from an airplane.

Brazil’s environment agency, IBAMA, discovered a 178 hectare patch of dead trees during a recent overflight of an area of the western Brazilian Amazon.

You can read more here.

 

Slavery on fishing trawlers October 1, 2010

Filed under: environmental issues,global justice — Monkey @ 8:16 am

The Environmental Justice Foundation set out to investigate illegal fishing off the West coast of Africa, which is decimating fish stocks. They found a bit more than that: several trawlers with licenses to supply European fish markets were crewed by modern-day slaves. The men are kept in horrendous conditions, some with little access to clean water, confined aboard the trawler for months, even years, subjected to violence, their pay is withheld and their documents confiscated. You can read more from the Guardian here.

 

 
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