Feminist Philosophy in Non-Feminist Journals

In a discussion about publication success and failure in feminist philosophy, on the SWIP listserve (I am not copying it here, because that might violate the rules of the listserve), one contributor comments that as an editor of a mainstream journal, she did not receive papers in feminist philosophy.  She thinks that feminist philosophers may be cutting themselves off from mainstream journals–to the detriment of the profession, the journals, and ourselves.I’m writing because I found her comments surprising.   Speaking for myself, I can fairly readily get non-feminist papers published in mainstream journals, but I only rarely write papers like that.  But almost never has my feminist stuff been accepted by mainstream journals.  Every time I write a new paper that I’m quite proud of, I try sending it out, first to some of the most selective journals, and then, as the rejections roll in, I send it out to less selective ones.  Usually without success. As a result, many of my publications are either books, or invited chapters in books.I feel I’m doing my bit by trying to get my work into mainstream journals, but how long can one go on doing that, without feeling utterly discouraged?  The condescending comments I’ve received from reviewers at mainstream journals are not exactly the sort of thing to provide philosophical inspiration.

British Feminist Boom?

A bit of good news passed on to me by Buffy the Patriarchy Slayer, who hasn’t figured out how to blog yet.  Over the last 18 months, 6 British feminist magazines have launched. This seems to be part of a broader re-energizing of the movement, which was of course never as dead as everyone said it was.

For instance, Female Trouble, a Manchester-based group that formed last August, puts out a magazine – Desperate Living – as well as raising money for traditional feminist causes such as rape-crisis centres.  Other recent examples of feminist activism include the resurrection of the annual Reclaim the Night marches in Manchester, Edinburgh and London, the latter attended by 1,500 women in 2006; a march of solidarity in Ipswich following the recent string of murders; a campaign that saw Cardiff city centre strewn with postcards giving statistics on rape and the pay gap; and a protest against lads’ mags outside a Leicester branch of WHSmith this April.   

For more, see Jess McCabe’s Guardian article here.  I wonder if British students will be flocking to feminist philosophy classes to get in on the hot new trend!

Contact the Feminist Philosophers

A new approach to contacting us, in response to the Lost CFP Fiasco (see post below).

If you have a CFP you’d like us to post, or a story we might want to blog about, do send it in! But don’t hate us if we don’t get to it– there’s just a few of us, we can’t blog about everything, and life gets in the way sometimes.

To contact us, write in the box below.

Call For Papers

Well, this was sent to me an embarrassingly long time ago, but I didn’t know until now because I forgot to check my Jender account (a problem that hopefully won’t arise again, due to the nifty contact form I’m setting up!)

Call for Papers

Special Issue of Hypatia: A Journal of Feminist Philosophy

Medical Biotechnologies

Edited by Marin Gillis and Inmaculada de Melo-Martín

Medical biotechnologies have been heralded as both the solution to most problems affecting human beings and their environments, and as a threat to all that matters to us. Feminist analysis of current medical biotechnologies has much to offer to this debate. Hypatia: A Journal of Feminist Philosophy invites submissions that use feminist philosophy to evaluate medical biotechnologies.

Articles exploring feminist philosophical analyses of medical biotechnologies and those evaluating how feminist values might shape the development and implementation of such technologies are welcome. Also of interest are essays reflecting on the gendered, race, and class dimensions of medical biotechnologies, those evaluating the impact of globalization on these biotechnologies and vice-versa, and articles offering new insights into the effects of medical biotechnologies on social and political arrangements.

Although feminist work in biomedicine is frequently assumed to be about women’s capacity to procreate, this issue seeks to highlight other dimensions of medical biotechnologies, including human genetic modification, cloning, xenotransplantation, chimeras, pharmacogenomics/genetics, and human genetic databases.

Papers should be no more than 8000 words, inclusive of notes and bibliography, prepared for anonymous review, and accompanied by an abstract of no more than 100 words. Please provide a cover letter identifying your paper as a submission for the special issue “Medical Biotechnologies.” The deadline for submissions is 15 March 2009.

Papers should be submitted by electronic attachment in Word to Marin Gillis at mgillis@medicine.nevada.edu. Submissions should follow Hypatia guidelines (see http://www.msu.edu/~hypatia/) Please address all correspondence, questions, and suggestions to Marin Gillis or Inmaculada de Melo-Martín at imd2001@med.cornell.edu.

Rich men

When I’m not busy blogging, I spend my days thinking up new schemes to attract a wealthy man. So far, I’ve met with no success. I was thus very pleased indeed to discover dating websites specifically for gold diggas like me, such as Sugardaddies, and Wealthy men. Does anyone know if there are similar sites for people who want to date rich women?

Police Campaign on Genital Mutilation

Here’s a report from the BBC about the Metropolitan Police’s new Campaign to counteract female genital mutilation. They are offering a £20,000 reward for information which leads to a convictions for female genital mutilation. Apparently, they’ve timed the campaign to coincide with the school summer holidays since this is the time when it happens most – they suggest as many as 7000 girls in the U.K. are at risk.

Update On ‘Rape’ Ban

Update, from Shakesville, on our earlier post regarding a courtoom ban on the use of words like ‘rape’ in a rape trial.

The accuser, Tory Bowen, has refused to sign an order agreeing not to use these words. In her own words:

And then I’m pausing three seconds because I don’t know if it’s a word that will lead to a mistrial or me being jailed or held in contempt. It’s frightening. That’s not something a victim should go through.

Bold Gender Claims

From Michael Scherer at Salon:

In the Democratic presidential pack, the leading man is a woman and the leading woman is a man.

Some interesting attributions of gender and race going on in this campaign. See also Debra Dickerson’s Salon article:

Barack Obama would be the great black hope in the next presidential race — if he were actually black.

And Gary Kamiya’s reply:

Obama is black — he just isn’t “black.”

Of course, back in the last millenium we had the claim that Bill Clinton was the first black president. How long before an article on the Clintons as a gay interracial couple?

Lack of affordable childcare…

…during the summer holidays reported on here, following a survey by the daycare trust.

Obviously the article isn’t aiming to say everything that one might say about childcare, but I found it interesting that there is NO mention of gender issues at all – the implications of the lack of childcare, say, for parents and in particular, given norms about primary care giving roles, mothers. Presumably widespread boredom of children isn’t the only consequence of the lack of childcare. Some parents must be doing a fair bit of juggling, or cutting back on hours, or double shifts in order to work around childcare…

(Again, see Okin for more related to this, and how such commitments, combined with the fact that women often take on the primary care-giving role, contribute to their exclusion from or hindrance in the workforce.)

Philosophy Journal Rankings

Important update: Thom Brooks, in comments has alerted me to the fact that the ESF is soliciting feedback about this list. I hereby urge you all to go give them some!  As noted below, they’ve changed the list before in response to feedback, so this is well worth doing. 

I’m a little late to this one– sorry– but it’s well worth noting here anyway. The European Science Foundation has come up with a ranking of philosophy journals, which you can check out here. There’s a lot for feminist philosophers to be annoyed about, perhaps most notably the ranking of Hypatia, the top English language feminist philosophy journal, as a B. This is particularly important because it is very difficult to publish feminist philosophy in other journals. (For some statistical evidence of this, see the stats in Sally Haslanger’s paper here, “Changing The Ideology and Culture of Philosophy”. For a bit of anecdotal evidence, at least re analytic feminism, try thinking about where you see analytic feminism papers appearing– overwhelmingly feminist journals, invited volumes, or invited journals. Or, if it’s appropriate to your case, compare your rejection rates for feminism papers with your rejection rates for others.) It can also be difficult to get publications in Hypatia taken seriously by one’s department: I know of at least one junior faculty member who was told that she needed to get some more ‘mainstream’ publications, despite her publication in Hypatia, the top journal in her field. A high ranking for Hypatia in a list like this could really help feminist philosophers struggling to get their work taking seriously. It’s worth noting, though, that Hypatia had originally not even been included on the list. SWIP UK and lots of others raised an outcry about this and other omissions to the provisional list, the British Philosophical Association took up the cause, and the new list is substantially improved, despite its flaws. For more discussions of these rankings, see Lemmings, Leiter, Brooks Blog, and Gone Public.