Janus-faced: A beginning of the semester quiz: Addition

Introductory addition:  We’ve struggled on this blog a number of times with finding the right rhetoric to call attention to the fact that some conferences are in effect all male, thus contributing to further  marginalizing women in the profession.  It’s easy to praise the precedent-breaking conferences like the Auburn one, few though they are, but the others are harder.  We do not want to report it in the way one reports the weather, say.  It isn’t inevitable, it is the product of human decisions (if  not the decision to privilege men as such), and so on.  At the same time, many of the members of the blog do not want to issue strong judgments about members of the profession who may, after all, be well-meaning.

Further, we are convinced that having women speakers makes a potentially important contribution to raising the quality of the content of a conference.  New ideas, as network theory insists, tend to come from the periphery, not the center.  The inclusion of women philosophers is important for a number of reasons.

Now there’s a worry that my attempt to call attention to the two very different ways these conferences are organized obscures more than it reveals.  Hopefully this introduction addition helps!  This is serious stuff.)


We all know that Janus, the Roman god, had two faces, one looking forward and one looking backward.  Now, in one hundred words or less, describe why these two conferences might remind one of Janus.  Before you start writing, you may want to review the material here.

Conference One:  Auburn Philosophy Conference

Topic of the 2010 Conference:
Ontology of Ordinary Objects

Keynote Speakers:

Lynne Rudder Baker, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Amie Thomasson, University of Miami
Kathrin Koslicki, University of Colorado, Boulder


Karen Bennett, Cornell University
Crawford Elder, University of Connecticut, Storrs
Thomas Hofweber, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Paul Hovda, Reed College
Kris McDaniel, Syracuse University
L.A. Paul, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Brian Epstein, Tufts University

Conference Number Two:  2nd Copenhagen Conference in Epistemology:


AUGUST 19-20, 2010

Speakers include David Christensen (Brown), Jerry Gaus (Arizona),
Stephan Hartmann (Tilburg), Rainer Hegselmann (Bayreuth), Vincent
Hendricks (Copenhagen), Michael Lynch (UConn), Erik J. Olsson (Lund),
and Duncan Pritchard (Edinburgh).

The second is from a cfp.

(Thanks to JT for the first and AFEMMSS-L for the second.)

“Thousands may be dead”: Donations to Help in Haiti

It is a catastrophe.  If you want to help by making a donation, think  of trying:

Medecins Sans Frontiers / Doctors without Borders (This link gives you a list of links for online donations from various countries; note the US link at the bottom of the page.)

The Red Cross (Note that donations here go to a general relief  fund; if you want to specify Haiti, you’ll  need to mail it in.)


It is hard to tell whether funds in some cases will go into a general  fund or will be dedicated to Haitian relief efforts.

From the US  State Department:

To help, text “HAITI” to “90999” and a donation of $10 will be given automatically to the Red Cross to help with relief efforts, charged to your cell phone bill. Or visit Red Cross and Mercy Corps to contribute. Also call 1-888-407-4747