Domestic Violence Classes

Rhode Island now requires schools to teach about violence in relationships: how to recognise warning signs and how to get help. This is good. But it strikes me that something is missing here:

Rhode Island Attorney General Patrick Lynch, who shepherded the proposal through the legislature last year, said domestic violence is a disturbingly common crime, yet education about it is scarce and haphazard.

“You teach sex ed, you teach ‘don’t do drugs,’ you teach ‘don’t drink,’ you should also be teaching ‘don’t be a victim of domestic violence,'” said Lynch, whose office receives about 5,000 cases a year.

It’s not enough to teach people “don’t get in a car with a drunk driver”, as Lynch clearly recognises. You also teach them not to drive drunk. So why stop at teaching people not to be a *victim* of domestic violence?? (Thanks, Jender-Parents!)


The Society for Philosophy and Psychology, one of the original ‘cognitive science’ societies, has formed a committee on diversity.  The committee’s initial – but not exclusionary – focus will be on women in philosophy.  One reason for this is that the representation of women is considerably lower in philosophy than it is in the other disciplines that are represented by the society.

The committee on diversity has a blog, and a first shot at an initial set-up can be found at  It hasn’t gone officially public yet, and the chair would like feedback from FP readers before it does.

The blog will post newsletters, information about conferences, funding opportunites, and so on.  The initial post are trying to set up a problematic:  Philosophy has supposedly been making an effort to hire women for some time.  The results are pretty dismal.  One thing we might consider is the amount of unconscious bias against women.

So see what you think.  And helpful comments you might have should be left here; the diversity blog isn’t yet really set up for comments.

We might note that there’s some reason to think this might have some positive effect.  If we could get a number of philosophy faculty somewhat versed in the problems of diversity, decisions about  who gets what might change a bit.

The author of the posts is the chair of the committee.