The tragedy in Japan

CNN has an early list of Charities which are responding here:

If you have any other suggestions, please let us know.

In addition, I hope that any philosophers in Japan who face losses that philosophers elsewhere can help with – such as books and supplies – will contact us and other blogs to let us know what help is needed.

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

How to advertise to women

I wondered if anyone shared this feeling. Every time I see this job advert come past (and it’s come to me repeatedly recently, via various lists):

Applications are invited for a permanent lectureship in Philosophy of Cognitive Science [..]. The successful candidate will conduct philosophical and interdisciplinary research and teaching [..]. She or he will have a PhD and publications commensurate with their stage in
career, and should demonstrate potential for attracting external funding.

I go all warm and fuzzy inside. For some reason the mere writing of “she or he” rather than the more usual “he or she” makes me feel that there must be someone behind this post who has really taken some important issues to heart, and who must be really committed to, or at least aware of, the possibility of hiring a woman.

For some reason this way of phrasing the ad makes me feel welcome and included, whereas the more usual phrases of the sort “we are an equal opportunities employer” or “women are particularly encouraged to apply” do not. I guess that the difference is that those latter phrases merely state that women are encouraged – which can seem lipservice – whereas the phrasing in the ad above actually encourages women; it demonstrates a commitment and embodies encouragement.

So, 1) thank you to the writers of this job-advert – you make me happy every time I see it come past, and I hope you will end up hiring the fantastic colleague (of either gender!) you clearly deserve! 2) I wondered what other people on this blog thought – does it make you feel similar, or am I being naive? and if you feel similar, is this something to remember or promote?

p.s. I did not post the full ad or the institution, as I don’t know if that is appropriate. I could put in a link to the advert in comments if that is judged appropriate or is requested.


Write to UNLV Regents!

We posted earlier about UNLV’s plan to close Philosophy, Women’s Studies and the Women’s Research Institute of Nevada. I asked you to write to the Dean. It seems that the matter is out of the Dean’s hands, and now we need to write to the regents. Please do write, even if you’re not in one of these fields and even if you’re not an American: widespread pressure is important in cases like this. (Thanks, Greg!)

Regents contact information:

James Dean Leavitt, Chair

Jason Geddes, Ph.D., Vice Chair

Mark Alden

Dr. Andrea Anderson

Robert J. Blakely

William G. Cobb

Cedric Crear

Mark W. Doubrava, M.D.

Ron Knecht

Kevin C. Melcher

Kevin J. Page

Dr. Jack Lund Schofield

Michael Wixom

New resource for PhD applicants, and query

From a reader:

I contacted FP a couple of times before about advice on applying to grad school (and thanks again!) but now that I’m almost completely through the process, I thought it would be helpful to create a central location for resources for applicants. I’ve started putting it together here.

I’m obviously still working on putting this together, but I realized that I don’t know of any particular resources for students of color. I’m wondering if there are any? I know that the information about programs that are friendly to women was immensely helpful to me. One of the programs that was suggested on your blog in response to my query was one that I would not have otherwise applied to, and it likely that I will accept their offer of admission. So I was hoping there might be something out there that I’m not aware of?

National Book Critics’ Circle Awards

The National Book Critics Circle Award Winners

Jennifer Egan won the National Book Critics Circle Award for fiction at the Tishman Auditorium of the New School on Thursday night for “A Visit From the Goon Squad” (Knopf), a wildly inventive novel of interlocking stories.
The board of the National Book Critics Circle, a group of more than 600 professional book reviewers, called the book “a novel at once experimental in form and crystal clear in the overlapping stories it delivers, offering us a sense of youth and what gets lost along the way.” Ms. Egan beat out Jonathan Franzen for his best seller “Freedom”; David Grossman; Paul Murray; and Hans Keilson for the prize. [Not that we’re thinking of the competition as though it were a boxing match – jj]

In nonfiction, Isabel Wilkerson, a former reporter for The New York Times, won for “The Warmth of Other Suns” (Random House), her deeply researched history of black migration from the American South that the panel called “a magisterial work.”

Darin Strauss was awarded the prize for autobiography for “Half a Life” (McSweeney’s), which centers on a car accident the author was in that killed a classmate; Sarah Bakewell won the biography award for “How to Live: A Life of Montaigne in One Question and Twenty Attempts at an Answer” (Other Press); C.D. Wright was the poetry winner for “One With Others” (Copper Canyon); and Clare Cavanagh won the criticism award for “Lyric Poetry and Modern Politics: Russia, Poland, and the West” (Yale University Press).

We know the process to national achievement is complicated and, contrary to the trope of the forgotten genius suddenly discovered, it involves the community in complex ways, including mentoring and relatively unbiased judging.  So let us celebrate the fact that women recently have more access to such resources.