And the nuns, of course

This will seem surprising to some, though it surely ought even to be expected. The limitts to spontaneous imagination in matters of morals and action needs investigation.

From the NYT, FEB 5, 2019.

ABOARD THE PAPAL PLANE — Pope Francis said on Tuesday that the Roman Catholic Church had a persistent problem of sexual abuse of nuns by priests and even bishops, the first time he had publicly acknowledged the issue.

Catholic nuns have accused clerics of sexual abuse in recent years in India, Africa and in Italy, and a Vatican magazine last week wrote about nuns having abortions or giving birth to the children of priests. But Francis had never mentioned it until he was asked to comment during a news conference aboard the papal plane returning to Rome from his trip to the United Arab Emirates on Tuesday.

“It’s true,” Francis said. “There are priests and bishops who have done that.”

Mentoring Workshop Deadline Extended

The Mentoring Program for Early-Career Women Philosophers still has openings for the 2019 Mentoring Workshop, and so we are extending the deadline for applications until Feb. 15.

The Mentoring Workshop will be held at Boston University, June 23 – 25. There is no fee for participation in the Workshop, although mentees will be responsible for their own travel, meals and lodging expenses.

To apply for the workshop: Send an email to Mentoring2019@umass.edu stating your intention to apply, and indicating at least two areas of specialization, in ranked order. Include as attachments (in .docx or .pdf format) your CV and an abstract of the paper you would like to workshop. More information about the Mentoring Program and the Workshop can be found at our webite: http://www.bu.edu/philo/people/faculty/mentoring-project/

Al-Saji on Burka Bans

Feminist philosopher Alia Al-Saji, in the New Statesman. Just one sample:

These misreadings of Muslim dress are more than misperceptions, since rational argument, counter examples and historic analyses fail to correct them. One grows weary of how often the debates around Muslim women’s “veiling” recommence, with a recalcitrance that repeatedly disregards previous arguments against banning the practice.

Philosophers of racism would call this recalcitrance an active ignorance, a disregard that creates or constitutes the racialised perceptions of “others.” What is more, the reinvention and rephrasing of bans on veiling are part of how anti-Muslim racism endures, taking on a different guise and hiding under the mantel of seemingly consensual social norms in a given society.

Whether it be secularism, transparency, integration, security, or ideals of freedom, justice, and gender equality, these normative frameworks are instrumentalised to justify the exclusion of Muslim women, and the differential treatment and domination of Muslims more generally.

Read the whole thing!