CFP: ALSP 2014 Annual Conference

 Association for Legal and Social Philosophy
 2014 Annual Conference: 1st-2nd July

University of Leeds

 School of Politics and International Studies, University of Leeds Local organisers: Kerri Woods and Derek Edyvane

 Keynote plenary speakers:
 Jennifer Saul (Sheffield)
 Jeff Spinner-Halev (North Carolina, Chapel Hill)

 Theme: Injustice

 Papers are welcome in any substantive area of legal, social, or political philosophy (justice, democracy, rights, liberalism, communitarianism, punishment, etc) and from any philosophical methodological approach, but we particularly welcome those addressing the conference theme. Research into theories of justice has been exhaustively pursued within political philosophy in recent decades, but research on the distinctiveness of theories of injustice is an emerging field. Papers addressing the theme might examine the idea of injustice directly, or might engage with particular issues or instances of injustice.

 Both individual papers and proposals for panels on related topics are welcome.
 Please send paper/panel proposals to by 31st January 2014. Submissions should consist of a title and 400-500 word abstract (for each paper, in the case of panels). These may be sent in the body of the email or as an attachment (.doc, .docx, .pdf), but please ensure that they are prepared for blind review (i.e. author’s name and affiliation should appear in your email but not with the abstract).

 Any queries can be directed to the conference email address:

CFP: Formal Epistemology Workshop 2014

Second Call for Papers

June 20-22, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA

Send anonymized papers to by January 31

Further details about the conference are available at:

Submissions should be prepared for anonymous review. Initial
evaluation will be done anonymously. The final program will be
selected with an eye towards maintaining diversity, so graduate
students, people outside the tenure track, women, and members of
underrepresented minorities are particularly encouraged to submit

Some funding has been secured to subsidize travel for student and
non-tenure-track authors.

Please send full papers as an attachment to by
Friday, January 31, 2014. Identifying information about the author(s)
(including obvious self-citations) should be removed from the body of
the paper, but the name (and any other relevant information) should be
included in the text of the e-mail. Final selection of the program
will be made by March 31, 2014.

On being loud and taking up space

See Lisa Wade’s Gender and the Body Language of Power for a nice discussion of the ways women are socialized to be quiet, demure, and not take up space.

“Philosopher Sandra Lee Bartky once observed that being feminine often means using one’s body to portray powerlessness.  Consider: A feminine person keeps her body small and contained; she makes sure that it doesn’t take up to much space or impose itself.  She walks and sits in tightly packaged ways.  She doesn’t cover the breadth of the sidewalk or expand herself beyond the chair she occupies.”

There is also a new tumblr about men taking up space called Move The Fuck Over, Bro that’s  worth having a look at.

Thanks HLS.

Gender-neutral language debated in the House of Lords

There was an interesting and well-informed debate in the House of Lords in December 2013 on gender-neutral language in legislation.  One illustrative highlight:

In my view, it was perfectly reasonable for Jack Straw in 2007 to call for an end to any such male stereotyping in our use of English, specifically rejecting the Interpretation Act 1978 and its reiteration of the convention that masculine pronouns are deemed to include feminine reference. If it ever worked, that convention no longer does, and there have been convincing psycholinguistic experiments showing that sentences such as “Anyone parking his car here will be prosecuted” predominantly call up images of a man doing the illicit parking.

To return to the policing Bill, we find that most amendments are thoroughly sensitive in this respect, with anaphoric reference employing “he or she” or repetition—“a person … that person”. But among the minority using the traditional “he”, there are striking cases, especially in Amendments 93 to 95, where the singular masculine pronoun is used no fewer than 18 times. In all of them, the antecedent of “he” is surely a tell-tale phrase: “the judge”. Since we do indeed have a judiciary that is largely manned by men, it is hard to believe that the use of “he” in these amendments really means “he or she” rather than endorsing one particular male stereotype as a fact of life.

(The speaker here is Lord Quirk, who founded the Survey of English Usage in 1959. I really don’t like the fact that we have an unelected upper house in the UK, but the fact we get contributions like this gives me pause.)