Help some budding feminist philosophers!

Our Year 7s recently did some work in History about why the subject is relevant to us today. They had to come up with their own historical questions. The pupils had to believe that in answering these questions they would discover something that would shape the way we live today. They then voted on the most interesting questions. One class chose the above question: “Why are men and women different?” – qualifying it, as all good philosophy students should, with the follow-up: “That is, if they are that different really?”

I am delighted that the class voted for this question. I am constantly both infuriated and heartbroken by the constant bombardment of images and ideas about gender that our young people receive, and am very happy that the chance to discuss this came from the kids themselves.

So here is my request, oh lovely F Word readers: how would you begin helping 11-year-olds answer this question? Are there any good resources you can recommend? Any short stories, or interesting videos, or beautiful and terrifying graphs that would be accessible to 11-year-olds? Are you a teacher who has tried and tested methods of aiding pupils’ discovery? Do you work in London, and if so, would you like to come and meet the next generation of feminist-philosophers? Please get in touch with me by email!

For more, go here. (Thanks, J!)

And now for the rest of the story…

You’ve probably heard the story: mon and children trapped in a car filling with water. Mon tries to get them to safety, but a wave sweeps the little boys away. Residents nearby refuse any help, even just phoning 911.

An important fact is now reported. She is black; the neighbors white.

Police on Thursday said two brothers, ages 2 and 4, who were swept away Monday night when waves of water crashed into an SUV driven by their mother in Staten Island were found dead.

Glenda Moore left her Staten Island home with two children and was driving to a family member’s house in Brooklyn when her car became submerged underwater. She freed her two kids from their car seats but rushing waves of water swept the kids away from her arms.

“It went over their heads… She had them in her arms, and a wave came and swept them out of her arms,” the mother’s aunt told the NY Daily News.

Local Staten Island newspapers have reported the mother unsuccessfully tried to get help from neighbors but the New York Daily News is reporting another side of the story:

According to the sister, a dripping-wet Moore banged on doors looking for help in the middle of the hurricane, but couldn’t find anyone willing to help her.

“They answered the door and said, ‘I don’t know you. I’m not going to help you,’” said the sister. “My sister’s like 5-foot-3, 130 pounds. She looks like a little girl. She’s going to come to you and you’re going to slam the door in her face and say, ‘I don’t know you, I can’t help you’?’”

Moore spent the night huddled on a doorstep as the hurricane’s assault continued. At daybreak, her sister said, the desperate mother walked until she found a police car and related her heart-breaking story…

Resources related to climate

I have been very encouraged as of late by the efforts described on the What We’re Doing About What It’s Like Blog, as well as by the number of signatures on the petitions in support of the Gendered Conference Campaign (both our own, as well as Eric and Mark’s). It’s wonderful that so many philosophers are actively supportive of greater equity within the discipline. I thought it might be useful, then (for myself, if no one else), if we started putting together a collection of resources related to climate issues (ideas, data, examples, strategies, etc.). There are already resources all over–some more collected, some more scattered– here and elsewhere; this is intended to be just a bit of organizing.  I know I’ve missed a lot so, please, do add more in the comments! (List after the jump.)

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