The hiring process from an insider’s view

Lou Marinoff, chair of philosophy at City College of New York, describes the search and hiring process in his department here. The comments are as interesting as Marinoff’s description. Readers note out that it perfectly describes how four male philosophers end up hiring two more male philosophers, a point that Marinoff doesn’t address.

4 thoughts on “The hiring process from an insider’s view

  1. Frog, thanks so much! And the readers’ comments are great. They do bring out both that diversity was not a factor and that there was no regard for anything that might have added to the diversity of the most serious candidates.

    It’s interesting to ask why diversity isn’t mention by Merinoff at all. In my experience, male philosophers are convinced of their ability to detect philosophical excellence by some sort of “pure” insight that isn’t sullied by anything like gender or ethnicity. (To make this argument, I don’t mean to suggest that women are necessarily more perceptive, but we certainly do know there are counter-examples to the purity of the perceptions of excellence.)

    In addition, there is the strong tendency to rely on past judgments in a number of different ways. In a highly sexist field, this is more like to reproduce discrimination that it is to reduce it. One could despair.

  2. Why did I choose this discipline again? I actually think the explanations here in this article are too simplistic. The issue more likely has to do with a combination of messages from dominant culture about what it means to be a woman, with attendant assumptions about a woman’s “proper place” and intelligence, the overwhelmingly antagonistic culture of philosophy, and the dominance of the male voice and subject position in the dominant philosophical discourse. Women might begin to question their own rationality when they DO stay in the discipline.

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