This month’s list of “the best philosophical blog posts” from The Philosopher’s Carnival is 100% men.
When this was pointed out over at New APPS, the author of the Carnival commented thus:
Rachel – I am ashamed to say that (despite having carefully followed the discussions of the GCC), I did not even notice that. All of the submissions sent to me were written by men. I then went through the philosophy blogs I regularly follow to find important items which had appeared since the last carnival and added some of those. (‘Important’ obviously suggests a highly subjective value judgment – just the sort of place where significant implicit bias effects are to be expected.) After reading your comment, I have reviewed my feed reader and discovered that, although I follow some group blogs (like Prosblogion and NewAPPS) to which women regularly contribute, there are only two philosophical blogs written solo by women in my feed reader, and one of those hasn’t been updated in months. So my own reading habits are clearly contributing to this in an objectionable way.
In furtherance of the GCC, NewAPPS has linked to several lists of women working in particular sub-fields, so that conference (and edited volume) committees have an easier time finding people to ask. It would be helpful to me (and I’m sure to others as well), in ensuring that I don’t repeat this mistake, if there were a similar list of female philosophy bloggers.
The two I already have in my feed reader are Kadri Vihvelin (http://vihvelin.typepad.com/vihvelincom/) and Evelyn Brister (http://knowledgeandexperience.blogspot.com/).
In light of this, I put forward the following suggestion:
Now that we have reason to suspect that these lists are skewed to the point that they over represent men, the Carnival really shouldn’t be described as a “showcase of THE BEST philosophical blog posts” (emphasis mine) on the web.
Registration for the conference Implicit Bias, Philosophy and Psychology is now open! This conference is the Fourth and final event of the Leverhulme-funded Implicit Bias and Philosophy Project. For the full programme go here.
To register, go here. Although the conference is free, we do require registration so that we can plan lunches (which are free on Saturday and Sunday) and because the venue has limited space. At the registration site, you will also be given the option to pay for accommodation and evening meals on Friday and Saturday. You *must* book by 10 April at the latest, but due to space limitations we encourage you to book promptly if you want to be sure of attending.
For queries please contact the project’s Research Assistant, Angie Pepper: a.pepper AT sheffield.ac.uk Do let Angie know if you have disabilities requiring accommodation, or if we can help with arranging childcare. (Unfortunately, the Leverhulme Trust will not pay for this, but we can arrange it for you.)
A commenter on this post asks: “What advice would you give to get more women to *apply* to one’s program?” I thought I’d open up a new thread for this, in case our readers – as they so often do – have helpful and thoughtful suggestions.
I take it that the context of this question is one in which there is a shortage of women in philosophy for broad and systematic reasons. There is probably not much (or at least not much that’s sane and legal) that an individual department can do to suddenly attract an applicant pool that’s 65% female – though maybe I’m wrong about that. So I take it that the question is something like this: given that women already apply to philosophy grad programs in limited numbers, how can I make sure that as many of them as possible apply to my program? That is, how do I make my program seem as attractive as possible to potential women applicants?
My two cents – but I’m pretty out of my depth here – is this. Start by focusing on actually being a good place for women. Then make sure that you are open and public about the stuff that you do for women.
I’d be really curious to know whether departments who have been making efforts on both counts recently – Rutgers gives a good example here – have seen these efforts translate into greater numbers/percentages of female applicants.