Some of you were asking about the additional articles that came up in conversation this evening. One, “Harvard Business School Case Study: Gender Equity,” was on the front page of the New York Times a few weeks ago and discusses the initiatives undertaken by the administration to produce an extremely rapid narrowing of the gender disparity. The other, “Why Are There Still So Few Women in Science?,” recounts the personal experiences of a woman who chose not to go into academic physics. Both are highly interesting and pertinent to our ongoing conversation!
We’d like to extend a welcome to all the new members we greeted at the RSO Fair last week! We will again be meeting on Wednesday this week, at 5:30 PM in Stuart 209. (For those of you who don’t know: this is the only classroom on the second floor of Stuart Hall.)
We didn’t end up discussing the NPR article we assigned last week, but this week we will be discussing similar themes, so the content of that article will still be relevant. This week, we’ll be turning our attention to the ongoing discussion in the New York Times on the Colin McGinn scandal, which, according to some commentators, has been a “turning-point” in the debate on low numbers of women and minorities in philosophy departments.
The first article we’ll discuss — “A Star Philosopher Falls, and a Debate Over Sexism Is Set Off” — landed on the front page of the New York Times over the summer and newly brought the problem of women in philosophy to mainstream attention. The scandal was followed by five days of commentary by female philosophers in the New York Times‘ philosophy blog, The Stone (brought to our attention by UWIP member Alaina Bompiedi!). All five columns are worth reading, but we will specifically be focusing on “What’s Wrong with Philosophy?” by Linda Martín Alcoff, “The Disappearing Women” by Rae Langton, and “The Double Bind” by Peg O’Connor. Each one is only a few paragraphs, and reading all three should take you less than half an hour.
For those of you uninterested in discussing academic politics, don’t worry — next week, we’ll be assigning some philosophy.