The Links We Like – April Edition

Want to know what the internet had to say about philosophy & underrepresentation during April? We’ve got you covered. To see the links we post one at a time throughout the month you can ‘like’ us on Facebook or ‘follow’ us on Twitter (@RepEdinburgh). Otherwise, read on…

1. This cool workshop happened in Stockholm, and featured a paper co-authored by recent Edinburgh alumnus Melanie Sarzano. The other co-author is Marie Van Loon, who took part in last year’s Spring Workshop.

2. Eric Schwitzgebel crunched some numbers regarding the gender representation at the Pacific APA.

3. Registration opened for this interdisciplinary event on ‘Gender and Equality in the Academy’ in Dublin. It’s at the end of May, so still time to register if you’re interested in going!

4. This accessibility guide should be of use to anyone who wants all of their students and colleagues to be able to access their presentation materials – which is all of us, presumably?

5. This campaign aims to ‘fill the web with images of women doing what is usually considered men’s work’. It was started by a philosopher and an anaesthesiologist, and there are a bunch of philosophers (as well as other professionals!) up already. They are also on FacebookInstagramTwitter, and Pinterest which means you can be drip-fed counter-stereotypes regardless of which bits of the web you frequent, and you can even join in by buying your own t-shirt.

6. Here’s a flashy new website which hopes to be ‘a resource for philosophers who are looking to create a more inclusive classroom and profession’, with specific reference to stereotype threat.

7. Groningen have released the programme for their workshop on feminist philosophy.

8. A former English Literature PhD student recounted her experience of being a researcher and a mother in this Guardian article.

9. A depressing study found that less than half a percent of professors in the UK (in all disciplines) are black. This Independent article picks out a few key stats.

10. The Pluralist’s Guide to Philosophy aims ‘to provide students and their mentors with some informed, crowd-sourced ideas about two things: 1) where any student might productively cultivate an interest in American Philosophy, Continental Philosophy, Critical Philosophy of Race and Ethnicity, Feminist Philosophy, and GLBT Studies; and 2) where students from traditionally under-represented populations might reasonably expect to find a welcoming environment (as much as philosophers, or graduate programs, are ever welcoming). It seems to be limited to just US programmes at the moment, but could be of use to Masters students and Undergraduates who are thinking about further study.

11. Guy Longworth considered the question of how to deal with philosophers who have racist, and otherwise morally repugnant, views.

12. This fellowship is (put crudely) for women who want to write about women at Oxford. Is that you? Then apply here.

13. The Leeds MAP chapter announced the CFA for their conference on ‘implicit and explicit bias, broadly construed’. The deadline is July 25th. If you have written, or are planning to write, something on bias, then you should apply!

Got any suggestions for next month? If so, then get in touch!

Funds for Distinguished Visitor to Edinburgh. (Members of under-represented groups especially encouraged!)

The philosophy department at the University of Edinburgh has some money to support
expenses associated with the visit of distinguished philosopher to participate in the
research culture of the department including the possibility of talks, workshops, informal
meetings with faculty and graduate students, and visiting other Scottish universities. (No
salary costs but costs associated with accommodation, travel, and events). The visit
should be for at least 3 weeks and ideally longer, during 2016.  We would be especially
interested in inquires from members of under-represented groups. If you might be
interested please contact Matthew Chrisman (matthew.chrisman@ed.ac.uk) for more
information by May 1, 2015.

The Links We Like – March Edition

Here are the philosophy & underrepresentation links that we’ve come across throughout March. To see the links we post one at a time throughout the month you can ‘like’ us on Facebook or ‘follow’ us on Twitter (@RepEdinburgh). Otherwise, in no particular order…

1. Project Vox “seeks to recover the lost voices of women who have been ignored in standard narratives of the history of modern philosophy. [They] aim to change those narratives, thereby changing what students around the world learn about philosophy’s history.” – mega cool stuff!

2. This piece dealing with straw man arguments about trigger warnings should be useful to bear in mind when planning courses and setting reading. Does the reading contain something which might trigger PTSD in one of your students? Warn them. Easy peasy.

3. Edinburgh’s philosophy department have now officially subscribed to the BPA/SWIP Best Practice scheme. This is very exciting news, and we hope to soon have more information on what the department’s plans for ensuring an inclusive environment entail.

4. MAP UK have published their first report on what chapters around the UK are getting up to. The Edinburgh chapter gets a mention, and so does recent Edinburgh graduate Nicole Hall!

5. An anonymous academic discusses the prevalence of mental health issues in academia (and specifically amongst PhD students) in this Guardian article.

6. Myisha Cherry (who was featured in the first TLWL for her awesome Unmute Podcast) offers up 10 Tips For Presenting In Front Of People You Think Are Smarter Than You. Brilliant advice.

As always, if you happen across anything related to under-representation in philosophy that you think we might like, then let us know!

Happy International Women’s Day!

Today is International Women’s Day – an opportunity to “celebrate the achievements of women while calling for greater equality“. One of the most fundamental barriers to equality in philosophy is the collection of implicit stereotypes that many of us have about what philosophers look like – rich, white, able-bodied, cis, male (usually with beards)… so what can we do to overcome this barriercelebrate the achievements of women in philosophy, and call for greater equality for all people in philosophy? One thing we can do is expose ourselves (and others!) to images which counter those stereotypes. So, in celebration of International Women’s Day, and of diversity in philosophy, here are some places to find counter-stereotypical images of philosophers to look at, and share.

The MAP (Minorities and Philosophy) Faces of Philosophy poster:

MAP Faces of Philosophy

The APA’s Philosophy: Got Women? poster (buy it here):

APA CSW Poster

The looksphilosphical tumblr (see it here):

looksphilosophical

The philosophywomen tumblr (see it here):

philosophywomentumblr

This gallery created by Karla Tonella (click here):

Tonella gallerySo take a look, share them with other people (including non-philosophers!) and while you’re at it, why not learn about a female philosopher? Go here, type in “women philosophers” and hit ‘submit’.

The Links We Like – February Edition

Here are all the philosophy & underrepresentation links that we’ve come across throughout February. To see the links we post one at a time throughout the month you can ‘like’ us on Facebook or ‘follow’ us on Twitter (@RepEdinburgh). Otherwise, in no particular order…

1. Julia Bursten has written an excellent post about the media’s portrayal of ‘genius’ and how this relates to underrepresentation in STEM fields (and, I’m sure, philosophy).

2. The APA is calling for input on a code of conduct for professional philosophers. An exciting development, which may well have impact on UK philosophy as well as in North America.

3. The BSA have released a call for papers for a conference on Race and Aesthetics. The deadline is 15th of March, so there’re still 2 weeks left to submit something! It’s notable that the conference is committed to ensuring accessibility for all (see link 12), so everyone with relevant work should think about submitting!

4. Edinburgh’s (fantastic) UG Philosophy society are hosting what I think could be the first UG conference on ‘women in philosophy’. Their call for papers is here.

5. This interactive chart searches the words used in around 14 million ratemyprofessor.com reviews, and displays them according to gender and discipline. There’s endless mileage in this. Try ‘genius’, ‘brilliant’, and ‘nice’ for starters.

6. This new journal promises to publish on diverse fields and traditions, and to publish early-career philosophers alongside more established ones.

7. This post over at Daily Nous offers a different angle on the much-publicised issues of misconduct in philosophy: the intellectual costs of misconduct.

8. Another Daily Nous post recommends making a space for conversations about department climate when recruiting new graduate students. Is this something people would like to see at Edinburgh?

9. Durham are offering a number of Postgraduate Taught scholarships which are specifically aimed at addressing underrepresentation relating to economic background, carer-status, and disability. Deadline is 30th April.

10. & 11. Peter Railton bravely discussed his experiences with depression in his Dewey Lecture this month. A draft of his talk is available here, and Daily Nous have made a space for people to share their own thoughts on depression and other mental illnesses here.

12. Shelley Tremain (in a post for Discrimination and Disadvantage) on how to talk about accessibility when organising and publicising conferences.

13. The SEP now has an entry on Implicit Bias (written by Michael Brownstein). Exciting, and incredibly useful!

If you see anything during March which you think we might be interested in then let us know!

2014 New Enlightenment Lecture with Rae Langton

On 12nd December 2014, the Edinburgh Women in Philosophy Group (EWPG) hosted the third annual New Enlightenment Lecture, which was delivered by Prof. Rae Langton (Cambridge) on the topic ‘Authority and Hate Speech’. The New Enlightenment Lecture was created in 2012 as a prestigious, annual event of the EWPG and for a prominent female philosopher to deliver a lecture on a topic of her choice. Following last year’s success the Lecture was preceded by a roundtable discussion on a topic surrounding underrepresentation in Philosophy.

The roundtable this year was structured around the topic “Philosophy and Diversity” which is constituted by two sets of questions, namely (1) What are the possible detrimental effects of lacking diversity in philosophy; and (2) What are the possible practices that we can take to increase the diversity in philosophy. The panel of the roundtable include Prof. Langton, Prof. Emily Brady, Dr. Elinor Mason, Dr. Pablo Schyfter, Dr. Aidan McGlynn and Jie Gao (Chaired by Natalie Ashton).

SW Panel 2015

The Panel (minus Emily): Jie, Natalie (chair), Pablo, Ellie, Aidan and Rae

We were particularly interested exploring the reasons for the systemic ignorance, and exclusion, of minorities in philosophy, and the possibilities for enriching the discipline through acknowledging and supporting these underrepresented groups. Students and staff from Edinburgh were able to share a number of the practical steps we have taken in the department to increase diversity, and Prof. Langton made her own suggestions based on ideas she’s seen in Cambridge and in other departments.

Prof. Langton then delivered the lecture “Authority and Hate Speech”. She examined the interactions between practical and epistemic authority, and how that contributes to the force of hate speech. Drawing on theories of conversational dynamics, she argued that the authority of hate speech can follow rules of accommodation. Such a mechanism allows the authority of hate speech to emerge in informal ways, and derive from unlikely sources: even from innocent, non-hateful law; and even from innocent, non-hateful bystanders.

NEL Speaker 2014

Prof. Langton

The Lecture was followed by a lively and productive Q&A session, and the whole day was rounded off with a delicious dinner at Field restaurant.

Details of previous NEL events can be found here and here. Keep an eye out for the next NEL announcement later in the year.

CfP: Edinburgh Undergraduate Women in Philosophy Conference 2015

Edinburgh’s Undergraduate Philosophy Society are now accepting abstracts for their first Women in Philosophy Conference. Their call for submissions is below.


We are now accepting abstracts for the WIP Conference 2015. The abstract can be either an academic paper or a presentation relating to issues covered within the remit of the conference. Abstracts should translate into a talk of approximately 20-30 minutes.

Abstracts should be no longer than 250 words and should clearly specify the issue(s) addressed by the paper/presentation.

Please submit all abstracts to journal@philsoc.eu. Please include your abstract as an attachment. All abstract will undergo a blind review so please ensure that they have no identifying information included.

In your email, please include 1) your full name, 2) contact details, 3) your institution, and 4) your academic position (undergraduate/postgraduate/faculty).

The closing date for submissions is March 1st 2015.


You can find out more about the event on their conference website.