Friday, August 16, 2013

Jenny Saul sums it up

Salon article: "Philosophy has a sexual harassment problem."

Slate podcast (about 11:30 in).

As this problem has drawn press, Saul (and others) have been right there making the clear points that matter:

  • informal remedies make a difference—as a complement, not a substitute, for formal remedies
  • formal remedies can work, or they can be used to cover up rather than to resolve problems
  • the prevalence of harassment and sexual harassment is linked to the lower numbers of women in the field
  • recruitment of women and minorities can therefore help to reduce the prevalence of the problem, but recruitment must be accompanied by retention
  • there is no one explanation for the low number of women and minorities in philosophy, but given the degree and types of harassment, we might wonder why so many people stay in a field where they're made to feel unwelcome!