A Job Advert

Well, this is an FP first: someone has sent us a job advertisement. If this starts happening all the time, we may have to not post, but for now it seems like a good idea to help a department that wants to recruit feminist philosophers; and to help feminist philosophers in search of jobs:

The following job is available in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Cincinnati:

University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH. One-year Visiting Assistant Professor to begin 1 September 2009. AOS/AOC open. PhD required. Introductory to advanced undergraduate, possible graduate instruction; quarter system, 3-3-3 load. The successful candidate must teach introductory lecture courses in philosophy through film, and contemporary moral and political ideas. The department has additional teaching opportunities in philosophy of mind, epistemology, philosophy of law, feminist philosophy, environmental ethics, and business ethics. Minimal service requirements. However, the visitor will be expected to participate in departmental functions and generally contribute to the life of the department. The University of Cincinnati is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer. Women, minorities, disabled persons, and Vietnam Era and disabled veterans are encouraged to apply. Applicants must apply online for job reference number 29UC4308:


Applications must include a cover letter, CV, writing sample, names of three individuals who will be sending letters of recommendation, and evidence of teaching excellence. Initial consideration of applications begins 15 June 2009. The position will remain open until filled. To complete the application proceess, candidates need to have 3 letter of recommendation sent via paper mail to Chair of VAP Search, University of Cincinnati, Philosophy Department ML 374, Cincinnati OH 45221-0374.

Feeling for White fire fighters

Here’s the conservative view:

Good conservative judges apply the law rationally and they do not get involved in empathy and identity politics.

The issue before the SCOTUS on Monday:  A test was given to those applying for  promotion  in a New Haven fire department; no blacks qualified for promotion with the test.  Does that mean that the test was discriminatory?  Apparently yes

1.  Linda Greenhouse, prof of  law at Yale:    Congress enacted Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the statute at issue in the Ricci case, with a simple command to employers: thou shalt not discriminate on the basis of race or other protected characteristics, including sex and religion. .. In a 1971 decision, the Supreme Court ruled unanimously that a test that was “fair in form, but discriminatory in operation” could violate Title VII even without proof that the discrimination was intentional. Congress eventually amended Title VII to codify that decision, Griggs v. Duke Power. The rule was clear: if a job requirement produced a “disparate impact,” the employer had the burden of showing that the requirement was actually necessary.  


Powerful voices on the court, including Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, who wrote the majority opinion on Monday, began to call for something close to a zero-tolerance policy when it came to government counting its citizens by race for any purpose. And the court became skeptical of Congress’s making its own legislative judgments in ways that threatened to expand the boundaries of the court’s own narrowing constitutional vision.

As far as I can tell, the grounds for reaching a conclusion about disparate impact have been strenghtened, but also made highly problematic, since emplying it invokves racial thinking, according to the SCOTUS.

And a recurring them of the SCOTUS discussion:  we all feel for the while guys! Greenwald notes:

…Justice Kennedy devotes multiple paragraphs at the beginning of his opinion to highlighting all of the facts (as opposed to legal arguments) which make people sympathetic to Ricci.  Conversely, Justice Ginsburg, writing for the dissenters, noted upfront that the white firefighters “understandably attract this Court’s sympathy,” but it must be the law — i.e., long-standing legal precedent and the purpose of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act — which determines the outcome.