Sunday, September 10, 2006

Women in Philosophy: Making up a syllabus

One of the simplest things to do in promoting the full inclusion of women in careers (and other public spaces) where men are the predominate participants is to include them ourselves. For me, this means putting women's writing on my syllabi, inviting women lecturers to speak on campus, and encouraging my colleagues to do so also.

I'm teaching a course in Environmental Philosophy for the first time, and I've had less success in designing an inclusive syllabus than ever before. Among the required readings, there are 23 authors, and 4 of them are women (17%). This is a higher percentage than in many of the Environmental Ethics textbooks I looked at, but it's nothing to be proud of. Part of the difficulty is that the course centers on topics that have an epistemological or philosophy of science cast to them rather than being ethics-based, so I haven't assigned any ecofeminism. (I resist including feminist readings merely for the sake of including women because I think it tends to reinforce an artificial separation between 'mainstream' philosophy and feminist philosophy.) Among philosophers who write on issues in ecology and environmental science, Kristin Shrader-Frechette is the only woman I'm aware of, but suggestions would be appreciated!

1 comment:

Ronan Jimson said...
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