Question: if philosophy is male dominated, are women philosophers working on male thoughts/programs? Why or why not?

It should be of little surprise to find that people writing for a feminist blog will be disinclined to agree that women philosophers are all working on men’s thoughts. Nonetheless, there are lots to be said on related topics.

One phenomenon that is of interest is when one or more women develop an alternative to men’s thought in an area. For example, when it seemed that just about everyone was thinking about the necessary and sufficient conditions for “S knows that P” women philosophers started writing about how impoverished that approach to knowledge is. And though Aristotle and Hume are virtue theorists, Foot’s decades long investigation of morality and virtues hardly is merely working out the details of their programs.

Probably less well-known is Kristin Andrews work on animal psychology and its consequent revision of our understanding of folk psychology.

There are many more instances where women in effect propose a transformation of a field. I’d love to see examples our readers might come up with.

Of course, working out the details of others’ thought can also be powerful and important. Perhaps women working in metaphysics or logic come close to doing that.

Do please share examples you might think of!

New study on gender bias in student evaluations

“Our analysis of comments in both formal student evaluations and informal online ratings indicates that students do evaluate their professors differently based on whether they are women or men,” the study says. “Students tend to comment on a woman’s appearance and personality far more often than a man’s. Women are referred to as ‘teacher’ [as opposed to professor] more often than men, which indicates that students generally may have less professional respect for their female professors.”

Based on empirical evidence of online SETs, it continues, “bias does not seem to be based solely (or even primarily) on teaching style or even grading patterns. Students appear to evaluate women poorly simply because they are women.”

Read more.

Paradoxes about professional women explained?

According to this:

  • Women publish less, but their papers are more readable.
  • Women apply for fewer grants, but their applications do better.
  • Women doctors see fewer patients, but their patients are less likely to die.
  • Women realtors show fewer properties, but get higher prices for them.

Suggested solution: women know they will be held to higher standards, so take longer and therefore do better (but slower) work.  Read more here.

Chapel Hill Public Philosophy Workshop

From Caleb Harrison:

I am co-organizing a Public Philosophy Writing Workshop at UNC in May (along with Macy Salzberger and Barry Maguire). The workshop will include talks by folks who have experienced success in writing and publishing public philosophy (Myisha Cherry, Anita Allen, David V Johnson, Walter Sinnott-Armstrong), along with workshop sessions for attendees and presenters to work through ideas they have for written public philosophy. We have some funds set aside to help offset travel costs for early-career and non-tenured folks, and are looking for more submissions.

The workshop information can be found here:

The new deadline for submission is March 20.

Hypatia: Call for Nominations for Editors

On behalf of the Editorial Search Committee for Hypatia:

Hypatia: A Journal of Feminist Philosophy is seeking an editorial team to serve a term of five years, beginning July 1, 2018. The journal issues a call for nominations for editors every five years in order to consider new proposals and directions for the journal and to give others a chance to be involved. All proposals will be judged on their merits. We encourage self-nominations as well as nominations of others. This search began in 2016 but was interrupted last summer. We commence the search anew, recognizing the necessity of a shortened timeline.

Nominations are due March 15, 2018, proposals on May 1, 2018.

Hypatia is the preeminent journal for feminist philosophy; it has a wide international readership and a robust institutional subscription base. It serves as an important resource not only for philosophers, but for all those interested in philosophical issues raised by feminism, including interdisciplinary women’s and gender studies scholars. The journal publishes work covering a wide range of philosophical traditions and topics, and therefore we encourage nominations (including self-nominations) of editors who have diverse interests and expertise in sub-areas and methodologies of philosophy and feminist studies. Hypatia is committed to the inclusion of trans, critical race, transnational, critical disability, decolonial, and queer scholarship in feminist philosophy, and we especially encourage nominations of those whose experiences include marginalization or underrepresentation in feminist philosophy.

Candidates should have a record of publication in feminist philosophy. Some previous editorial experience is desirable. Individuals constituting an editorial team need not be members of the same institution. At least one member of the editorial team should be at an institution with graduate students in Philosophy, Gender/Women’s Studies, or another related program who can serve as managing editors and editorial assistants. Candidates should also indicate what types of institutional support they expect to receive and the manner in which members of the editorial team would share the work of the journal.

If you are nominating yourselves, please send brief CVs for each member of the editorial team. Also, please include a statement of interest that indicates how the work of editing the journal will be shared and where the journal will be housed, as well as brief statements regarding your previous relevant experience and the directions in which you would like to take Hypatia.

If you are nominating others, please send an email briefly stating your reasons for nominating them, as well as their institutional/postal addresses, telephone numbers, and email addresses. We will contact them and request that they provide the same materials as self-nominators, should they wish to be considered.

As noted above, we have a shorter timeframe than usual for the search process: After reviewing the nominations submitted by March 15, 2018, the search committee will invite a subset of nominated editorial teams to submit full proposals by May 1, 2018.

Further instructions for the preparation of proposals will be posted on this Hypatia website and a sample of past proposals will be made available.

Nominations (including self-nominations) should be sent by March 15, 2018, to the Chair of the Search Committee:

Kim Q. Hall,

Please write “Nomination for Hypatia Editorial Team” in the subject line of the email. If you have any questions about the nomination process, please contact Kim Q. Hall.

Other Search Committee members include: Ann Garry, Desirée Melton, and Paula Moya.

St Andrews Head: We will cancel E&D efforts if strike succeeds (petition)

As you may be aware, UK academics are engaged in their biggest ever strike.  There have been lots of threats from management.  But the St Andrews Principal has specifically treated to axe Equality and Diversity efforts if the strike succeeds.

From the petition:

In an email to staff at the University of St Andrews dated 20.2.2018 you listed a number of initiatives which are allegedly in jeopardy should the USS pension scheme remain as a Defined Benefit, rather than change to a Defined Contribution scheme. All of these particularly pertained to the rights of women and people from minority and disadvantaged groups studying and working in your institution; they included: a mentoring scheme for mid-career and senior academic women, a professorial merit exercise, housing development for early and mid-career staff, a nursery for the children of staff and students. Your email signaled that inclusivity and diversity would be de-prioritised, and research into them cancelled should the dispute be determined in line with proposals submitted by the University and College Union.

Read on, and please sign.  And share.

Chris Meyns on Elisabeth of Bohemia

Even in scholarship of early modern philosophy, Descartes easily gets credit for ideas that were at least as much Bohemia’s. Not that Bohemia is totally ignored. It’s more subtle than that. We find ample cases where, because of how Bohemia’s role is represented, she’s just ever so slightly pushed away from center stage.

Read the whole thing.