Tackling the big problems of our time



When one stops to ponder the big issues of our day, generally the first thoughts that come to mind are things like unemployment, terrorism, rioting Muslims, political corruption and, of course, the best brand of cat litter to buy for Fluffy.

But I’m willing to bet that you have probably never heard about a condition on our nation’s campuses of higher education that is causing all sorts of angst in the Ivory Towers of academia. Insidehighered.com has taken this crucial issue head on by discussing the fact that not enough female students are studying philosophy. That’s right. You read that correctly. There is a woeful imbalance in the number of female Aristotles on our college campuses today versus their male counterparts. I know, I know…will the bad news never end?

According to Jennifer Saul, professor of philosophy at the University of Sheffield in Britain

“conscious sexism and sexual harassment seem to be alive and well in philosophy. Many women, with good reason, find philosophy to be an extremely hostile environment and it’s not surprising they leave it.”

But never fear! Intrepid pioneers at Georgia State University are actively seeking to remedy this injustice.

Starting next year, graduate students teaching introductory-level courses in philosophy at Georgia State, who teach about half of all such sections offered, will use syllabuses that include at least 20 percent women philosophers. That’s at least double the number included on most syllabuses for the course at the university. 

Never heard of Nel Noddings? Well of course you haven’t. That’s because the Patriarchal Establishment has been focusing on lousy male philosophers like Plato, Descartes, Locke, Bentham, Nietzsche, Aquinas and Confucius. But that is soon to change at Georgia State. You see, in order to attract more female philosophy students, it’s necessary to alter the curriculum to include more female philosophers like Celia Green, Sally Haslanger and Hilde Lindemann. What about the quality of the education? Will this affirmative action for philosophers cause an incomplete course of study? Who knows? And who cares? It’s philosophy after all. But rest assured that we have our top people on this problem to make sure that this academic imbalance is addressed.

This injustice Will. Not. Stand!
P.S. – Interesting comment from reader mb
Meanwhile, like their peer institutions in Georgia, the male/female ratio at GSU is stuck at 40%/60%. i wonder when/if they’ll get around to addressing *that* gender gap.




2 responses to “Tackling the big problems of our time”

  1. TempestTcup says :

    I took a philosophy class many, many years ago & on one paper I was deducted points for quoting Popeye the Sailor. My instructor said he wasn’t a philosopher. “I yam what I yam” isn’t philosophical?

  2. King of my blog says :

    Popeye should have been listed along with the other greats. I think Shakespeare ripped off Popeye. “To be or not to be” somehow has the ring of “I yam what I yam” doesn’t it?

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