More V-Day Dancing: Save Wiyabi Project and All Nations Rising

As Us is a new literary journal showcasing works by underrepresented writers particularly Indigenous women and women of color. The V-Day special issue is dedicated to raising awareness of violence against women in Native American and First Nations communities through the All Nations Rising and the Save Wiyabi projects.


Save Wiyabi’s involvement with 1 Billion Rising (1 in 3 women will be raped, beaten, or killed in her lifetime, that means 1 billion women around the world) stems from the fact that Native American and First Nation women have identical statistics; and violence in our communities continues at these extremely high rates. “1 Billion Rising is a global movement to end violence against women through dance, and we as a dancing people, we will be round dancing, side-stepping, and powwow-ing these issues away on VDay,” according to Chief Lauren Elk.

Ronald Dworkin, 1931-2013

UPDATE: A selection from 50 years of his writing for the New York Review of Books can be found here, including “On Not Prosecuting Civil Disobedience.”

Many of us have been the beneficiaries of Ron Dworkin’s work over the years, as we reflect on and struggle with his work on rights, on abortion, on pornography, on legal theory, on distributive justice.  The list is long.  Our time with him was too short.  The notice on Leiter Reports is here.  The AP news wire is here. The NYT obit is here.

It is customary for the contributor who posts notice of someone’s death here at FP to quote from a work of the deceased that influenced the poster.  I could not let a year of teaching pass without using excerpts of Dworkin’s Taking Rights Seriously in at least one class, so below, I excerpt the passage that my own students gripped and grappled with enthusiastically.  (If you like the passage, see this essay online, which predates his book.)

I said that in the United States citizens are supposed to have certain fundamental rights against their government, certain moral rights made into legal rights by the Constitution. If this idea is significant, and worth bragging about, then these rights must be rights in the strong sense I just described. The claim that citizens have a right to free speech must imply that it would be wrong for the government to stop them from speaking, even when the government believes that what they will say will cause more harm than good. The claim cannot mean, on the prisoner-of-war analogy, only that citizens do no wrong in speaking their minds, though the government reserves the right to prevent them from doing so.

Call for papers: Transformative Experiences

Here’s a really interesting call for papers.

Transformative Experiences

Deadline for Submission
October 1, 2014

Call for Papers
Res Philosophica invites papers on the topic of transformative experiences for a special issue of the journal.

Some potential experiences are transformative experiences: they will change us in broadly cognitive—and perhaps significant—ways, and yet the full nature of the phenomenal characters of these cognitive changes are epistemically inaccessible to us before we have the experiences.

Philosophers are familiar with some of these types of experiences from the literature on consciousness—for example, the “what it’s like” properties involved in the knowledge problem. When Mary sees color for the first time, her experience is transformed in a way that she could not have predicted: she could not know what it would be like for her to see red for the first time. Such experiences are transformative for an agent in the sense that they are radically unlike the agent’s previous experiences with regard to their phenomenal character, intensity, and overall cognitive significance.

These sorts of transformative experiences include seeing color for the first time, but may also involve other sorts of experiences that involve significant changes in the agent’s phenomenal point of view, such as converting to belief in God, becoming sighted for the first time or becoming a hearer for the first time, becoming paraplegic, becoming female (or male), going to the front in wartime, or having one’s first child. Contemporary psychological and sociological research suggests that one’s actual experiences are often very different from how we expect they will be.
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