December 13, 2011

How the philosophers discriminate against women with dim lights, drinks, and an informal atmosphere.

At the annual meeting of the American Philosophical Association, "where most philosophy job interviews take place, part of the hiring process will take place at 'the smoker,' at which candidates and search committees mingle over drinks, with hiring committees at tables around the room."
A recent blog post painted a disturbing picture of the event... The anonymous post, on the blog "What Is It Like to Be a Woman in Philosophy?," said: "APA interviewing also means spending several nights up late, standing in uncomfortable shoes in a hotel ballroom, sipping cranberry juice while talking to tipsy prospective employers at that monstrosity we call the ‘smoker.' "
The poster, who said she is pregnant, complained about the informal interviews, the drinks and the dimly lit room. She said the setting of the “smoker” was overwhelming proof of the maleness of the profession, and the one time she was at the smoker before, she was hit on. 
If you structure an event to be very casual and informal, it has a disparate impact on people who feel more comfortable in a formal structure. When I first glanced at this article, I thought the problem was literally the smoke in the room, which has a genuinely unfair impact on pregnant women. But the complaint is about the reception, the opportunity to mingle, which, we're told "creates particular problems for women." But what are these "particular problems"? Are there not "particular problems" for all sorts of people, as well as particular advantages for others? And by the same token, doesn't a formal, well-lit, hiring committee with one interviewee situation create problems for some and advantages for others? Is the line between who's disadvantaged and who's advantaged really the line between female and male?
Jennifer Saul, head of the philosophy department at the University of Sheffield in the United Kingdom... said she was glad that the issue was being debated. “It is an incredible throwback to previous era. Even the name is indicative of that. I think it is a humiliating ritual,” she said.
Saul reports that “all the women I talk to are appalled” by "the smoker." I wonder if men are appalled too. Why don't we see would-be philosophers who are male expounding on their difficulties negotiating a cocktail party? Is it because they are not troubled, or is it because they are even more discriminated against? Do they dare write about their feelings of awkwardness and intimidation? The males suck it up and venture forward, I suspect. The women, in choosing to make an issue of female sensitivity, imagine they are advancing the cause of women. But are they?

ADDED: "Smoking... the symbolic equivalent of destructively appropriating the entire world."


Carol_Herman said...

I see. Philosophers can't cope with "smokers."

Plus, no one in the room is gonna replace any of the Dead White Men.

As to the "hiring committee approach by table" ... it sure sounds like a "dance." Or a "first date" experience.

Most people avoid these meat markets.

campy said...

Every woman has the right to never be made uncomfortable.

NorthOfTheOneOhOne said...

This isn't about that whiny atheist girl, is it?

Sam said...

I'm going to the APA with my husband this year. I'm looking forward to the chance to mingle with the eggheads. It'll be something of an ethnographic study for me. I will be wearing fashionably comfortable shoes, flattering clothes (why wear anything else?), and I will make polite conversation. Hubby and I have arranged care for our five children and are just sucking up the costs of attending the conference as part of the costs of his getting a good job.

Carol_Herman said...

Remember when people waltzed, and they had dance cards?

What if some people (as a general rule), are more popular than others?

Imagine if a woman (or two), came in costumes? Carrying a fan. Wearing a beautiful gown with a bustle in back. Maybe, a pair of long leather gloves?

Besides, a woman can wear an orchid on her chest, and a man would be limited to a boutonniere. Heck, a green carnation would mean you're gay.

And, a woman in a double-breasted business suit. And, in FLATS, because if one of the seated men is gracious enough to stand up ... she wouldn't want to tower over him, would she?

Is the food free?

Where's the downside?

Scott M said...

where most philosophy job interviews take place

What in the world would a philosophy job interview sounds like?

Employer: So you want to get a job here as a philosopher?

Useless Degree Holder: Yes, very much so.

Employer: Please prove that I don't exist. Then prove that you DO exist enough to facilitate the first proof. Then answer the question, "Why is there air?"

pduggie said...

etymology of symposium: know it

Skyler said...

Yeah, being a philosopher is so manly.

Good grief.

MadisonMan said...

It gives them something to think about.

MadisonMan said...

as part of the costs of his getting a good job.

In the context of philosophers, what constitutes a good job?

Henry said...

What about the Mormons? Are the Mormons appalled?

Actually, Mormon mythology is full of stories of Mormons who perversere in smoke filled rooms. One I remember from my teenage years is about the Mormon Airman. The officer treats everyone to a drink. The Mormon turns it down. The officer orders the Mormon to drink the whiskey. The Mormon turns it down. The officer proclaims, "Airman, unless you're a Mormon, you better drink that whiskey." Validation!

Enough with the complaining. Be philosophical.

rhhardin said...

Hyperbolic feminism meets hyberbolic doubt.

Henry said...

@Scott M. There's air to blow up basketballs. There's air to blow up volleyballs.

Scott M said...

@Scott M. There's air to blow up basketballs. There's air to blow up volleyballs.

OH! I hit a cow...

Patrick said...

" If you structure an event to be very casual and informal, it has a disparate impact on people who feel more comfortable in a formal structure."

But if you structure an event to be formal, it has a disparate impact on people who feel more comfortable in a casual and informal structure.

So what? Learn to deal with it. You're philosophers for crying out loud. To suggest that women cannot handle an informal structure is sexist.

Sam said...

MadisonMan from my perspective a good job is one that lets you pay the bills, keep food on the table and clothes on the kids' backs.

MadisonMan said...

I am unimpressed with the complaint about the pregnant woman quailing on entering a smoke-filled room. You can have a job interview, or you can have a smokeless night. You can't have both. This is not a big deal at all.

She exposed her child to far more risk going to the meeting, or to any job interview, than she did by exposing her pregnant self to a smoke-filled room for a day or series of nights or whatever. I wonder if she flew there? All that extra cosmic radiation! The horror!

Scott M said...


My favorite is the one about the four OCS grads/2nd lieutenants. A Major tells them to erect one of two flagpoles in the shortest amount of time with the least amount of effort. They debate for five or ten minutes and then try various ways to get the thing erected with only the two shovels provided. It ends up taking 30 minutes of butting heads, but they get it built.

The major shakes his head at them when the come to report that they are finished. He turns to a nearby sergeant and says, "Sergeant, have a couple airman put up that second flagpole" and turns back to his work.

Marica said...

"The women, in choosing to make an issue of female sensitivity, imagine they are advancing the cause of women. But are they?"

They are not.

I have been to several APA Eastern Division smokers. I'm not a philosopher, just a person who tagged along. They are every bit as horrible as the woman says they are-- for everyone.

The Eastern APA always takes place during the week between Christmas and New Years. The meeting rotates between NYC, Boston, Washington, Philly-- cities where the weather can be a problem for everyone. Also cities that ain't cheap. Unless they are presenting papers or commenting, grad students go out of pocket.

The Eastern APA is-- just is-- the job market for philosophers. On the one hand there are members of the search committees looking to narrow a list of 8-10 job candidates down to a list of 5 or so to bring to campus for the campus interview.

On the other are the candidates who've gotten interviews. The hotel where the conference takes place has a limited number of pricey meeting rooms. As Ann well knows, doing a hiring search is expensive, and philosophy departments run on a shoe string. So the interviews typically take place in hotel suites. It used to be the case that they were in hotel rooms. Note the difference. Before women-- I think rightly-- complained, a job applicant could find him/herself sitting in a desk chair while the committee members were seated at the edge of the bed.

No one likes the Smoker. They are de-humanizing for everyone involved. You'd think the Smoker would be an opportunity for faculty to catch up with friends in the profession. Nope. When not chatting with prospective new hires, committee members are searching out people who are interviewing their own graduate students, i.e., Tom's interviewing and tracking down people who will be interviewing his own student.

It is a meat market.

(If you don't land at least one campus interview at Eastern, your next stop will be the Central APA in early spring. The good jobs will be gone by then, as will be the good candidates.)

The fact of the fact of the matter is that the majority, >50%, of philosophy faculty are male. "Sensitizing" the APA isn't going to change that. If this young woman's professors didn't clue her into what a horrible thing the Smoker is, they have done her an extreme disservice. But if she can't handle the Smoker, she has little chance of surviving in the profession.

She should, however, keep in mind that if she's even moderately successful, this won't be her last smoker. Next time, she might be on the other end. Maybe she'll be more sensitive.

chuck said...

"Would you please remove your hand from my breasts. I don't know how you found them in the first place, but take you hand away."

That is how a small breasted woman of my acquaintance handled a man at a party who had had a few too many. Unshakeable, effective, and humorous. I think those were some of the character traits that helped her become an astronaut and get chosen for several shuttle flights.

EDH said...

I'm sorry, but the APA "smoker" interview process is no picnic for the men either.

Jeremy Pierce said...

The lights are no dimmer than any other hotel ballroom, and there is no smoke in the room. Smoking has been banned in such venues for quite such time. Where are you people getting this information, accounts of the Smoker from the 50s?

What the original complaint was completely different. This is a married woman who has three children, one still in utero. She can't leave her nursing child at home, but she can't deal with her child at the conference by herself, so her husband has to attend to help with childcare, and therefore they're paying for lodging for their whole family. This is a scenario only a nursing mother would experience, and that's why it disproportionally affect women.

Then she points out that the Smoker requires late-night attendance, someone in her situation will have much more difficulty with, after days of pressure and particularly negative effects that are at least a little more likely for women.

Her conclusion is that this is a problematic event, probably for both men and women, and the suggestion is that women are more likely to notice the problem. This is an argument not so much for sexist bias in the sense of being disproportionate impact on women (although that is probably true to some degree) but sexist bias in the sense that a profession mostly led and influenced by men isn't going to see what's so wrong about this event very easily without women pointing it out.

Marshal said...

Please, they aren't trying to advance the cause of women. They're trying to advance the cause of themselves. Since making a big deal out of nothing is the primary function of the various grievance industries she's proving herself an expert as publicly as possible.

Salamandyr said...

Maybe it's just me, but compared to what most people would consider the "normal" interview process, the smoker doesn't seem that bad at all. It's kind of hard to sympathize when I've gone through worse experiences acquiring every single job I've ever had!, up to and including my high school job working at Burger King.

I'm sure a hangnail seems quite painful to someone who's never suffered a cut.

J said...

The Brit. jargon--the "smoker"-- is a bit complex for Mericans. Just means..get together, party, soiree. Not cigar smoking.

Then, philosophical tradition--ie the Academy--has always been where the gals aren't (excepting a rare few...Diotima...Hypatia (tho' that's more than semitic tradition allowed)).

John said...

More whining. This in particular jumped out at me:

"standing in uncomfortable shoes in a hotel ballroom,"

I keep hearing this from women, about how uncomfortable their shoes are. My daughter has scores of pairs and she says few of them are comfortable.

Well, women, whose fault is this? YOU are the ones who decide what shoes to put on your feets. Most of the time you go with something that was designed by a man.

So find some comfortable shoes or at least stop bitching about YOUR choice in footwear.

John Henry

Peter said...

It sounds like a process that privileges those with good social skills.

And perhaps it's supposed to. But I don't see how this would disadvantage women as a class, unless one assumes that women in the aggregate tend to lack social skills.

Whereas the conventional wisdom is that it is men who are more likely to lack thsee skills- and especially the nerdy sorts who might be attracted to this field.

J said...

Speaking of misogyny, it's the A-tard gang.

Lets see some philosophasters (whether Ahouse phonies, or the usual fratboys) take on Ruth Barcan Marcus

Alexander said...

What Marica said about the Smoker is a good introduction to the issues. Let me add a few observations and comments on this undistinguished ritual.

1. The smoker is somewhat horrible for everyone involved.

2. I did not notice anyone smoking there, and no one will make you drink. It is far too chaotic for anyone to even know if you are drinking or not.

3. No one is required to stand. There are dozens of tables and hundreds of chairs. I spent most of my time sitting.

4. Lamely but predictably, there is no food.

5. There is no point in trying to reform it, since technology is going to kill the whole APA job interview horror show within a decade. It will be replaced by Skype interviews or whatever else fills this role. The older generation might be slow to change, but no one can argue with the cost savings involved.

MadisonMan: A good job is a job with a 3/3 teaching load on the tenure track at a good university or liberal arts college. A great job is one with a 2/2 teaching load on the tenure track at a research university or elite liberal arts college.

Jay said...

the one time she was at the smoker before, she was hit on.


The Horror!

Henry said...

"standing in uncomfortable shoes in a hotel ballroom,"

@John Henry -- Good catch.

You know what's comfortable? Cowboy boots. My wife didn't believe me until I bought her a pair. That was years ago.

If you want to wear comfortable shoes, go into Cowboy Philosophy. You might learn some marketable skills as well.

Lyssa said...

Patrick said: To suggest that women cannot handle an informal structure is sexist.

Women like this make me sick, and, as an ambitious woman myself, I am embarassed both for any by them. I hear similar all of the time from my peers, when they complain, for example, that demanding or intense work schedules are unfair to women.

Either you're good enough to play with the boys, or your not. Don't try to make it look like your inability to hack it is purely based on your vagina.

Chip S. said...

The whole smoker business seems like an artifact of a bygone era when profs introduced their prize students to their friends on hiring committees, over brandy and cigars.

Although the old-boy era may be fading away its associated hiring institution remains; a vaguely ridiculous practice that more nearly resembling speed-dating than interviewing.

sorepaw said...
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sorepaw said...
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Carol_Herman said...

Reminds me of how the Israelis sent in the entire Mossad. To Dubai. Where we got the film clips of the costumed agents. I especially liked the two guys ... at 9PM ... casually walking about the 5-star hotel's lobby ... with tennis rackets over their shoulders.

With proper planning anyone who goes into this room, should wear a disguise.

Oh, and if you bring a camera ... Unless you don't know which table is recruiting from a respectable place. Or not. You'd have to ask "at what table do the Ivy's hang out?

Oh. And, tables usually hold 8 people ... Will the "interviews" turn into something like THE GONG SHOW?

Will there be buttons for the applicants to press ... when they answer the recruiter's questions?

Isn't it rather undignified to be interviewed in the lobby? Isn't this even a worse idea?

Tennis, anyone?

edutcher said...

Putting women at ease is so unfair, they might forget they're womyn and remember they're women.

Ann Althouse said...

I thought the problem was literally the smoke in the room, which has a genuinely unfair impact on pregnant women

Which raises the question of how many pregnant philosophers exist at any one time and does awkwardness felt by any one or all constitute a pregnant pause?

The Crack Emcee said...

"To Me, A Cigarette Is A Food" - Frank Zappa

ndspinelli said...

Lyssa, You said it perfectly and w/ the moral authority only a woman could.

You may not get encouragement from others, but please keep commenting on other topics...we need fresh air.

Yiddishe Bloyger said...

It looks like she wants the free wheeling, fun career, with hardly any oversight, but she doesn't want the fallout that comes from working with people who want a freewheeling, fun career with hardly any oversight.

J said...

Wrong again byro-sorepaw-jay,dyslexic LDS perp, misogynist (Erika day!), AZ acid head. . Finish your RN<,and in the meantime look up your first syllogism,puerco.

Carol_Herman said...

You know. Smokers usually aren't hired! I'd bet in college settings ... even smoking a pipe these days is frowned upon.

Maybe, it's just a way to eliminate all the smokers? Given that you can't tell if a person smokes if all you're doing is reading a resume.

Oh. And, what happens if the interviewer gets sloshed?

Or if the interviewee is carrying a drink? And, sips?

Also. Can you ask how much you want to earn? You do this in bars all the time?

Andrea said...

"This is a married woman who has three children, one still in utero. She can't leave her nursing child at home, but she can't deal with her child at the conference by herself, so her husband has to attend to help with childcare, and therefore they're paying for lodging for their whole family."

I'm sorry, but... what is a mother who is 1) currently pregnant, and 2) still nursing a previous child, doing looking for a job outside the home? Just how much time is she going to have to devote to the job? I mean, she can quit nursing the one kid and put it on the bottle so her husband can take care of it, but she can't have him give birth to the one inside her. She really shouldn't be thinking about getting any sort of outside the home job at a time like this, no matter how tight money is at home. (If money was so tight she and hubby should maybe have thought twice about spawning but on the other hand she's looking for a job in the philosophy department of a university, which doesn't exactly say "desperate for cash" to me.)

I'm not saying women with kids shouldn't work outside the home, but come on, this is ridiculous. She already has her hands full. No one is going to hire her once they see her pregnant belly and find out she has two more small children because they'll know she won't be able to pay attention to her job. Of course, in today's PC atmosphere they won't say so, but they have the excuse of all those other candidates, some of whom are women who are not pregnant and whose children, should they have any, have already been weaned. They'll hire one of those women instead and then what will be the criticism - "sexist pig men refuse to hire pregnant, nursing women!"?

I think that the woman in question actually knows she wasted her time at this thing and that's what's really fueling her rage.

Yiddishe Bloyger said...

Ok, I’m not a woman in the field, but I was in the field and I left. I have never regretted that decision. I had publications and several presentations, a good resume; i was from a not famous but very well regarded analytic program, and had excellent recommendations. My reasons for leaving were:

1. Family. I have a family and children. I didn’t want to drag them from one city to another while working temporary positions, which was the experience of my classmates. Eventually people settle into a permanent position, but it can take years before that happens.

2. Locale. I wanted to choose what city to raise my family in. Not a realistic expectation for a beginning academic.

3. The lifestyle. Yep, it’s a lot of fun: conferences, travel, lots of free time. But these are not traits that encourage maturity and responsibility. It’s a pressure cooker for personal drama, and there’s lots of that in the academic world.

4. Money. I make a lot more outside of academia. Money isn’t a huge issue, but supporting my family is. And I can support them better on what I make outside of academia. If my wife doesn’t want to work, she doesn’t have to.

5. Religion. We’re a religious family. The academic people I know are tolerant of that, but at the same time, it’s like i have a mental illness. They tolerate it, but don’t undersatand it and hope I will some day snap out of it. That’s not the best work environment for someone who is religious.

Lyssa said...

Thanks, ndspinelli. I've appreciated a lot of your comments as well (even where I disagree). But I don't think I'd be "fresh air" here - not sure where the other female commenters are today (Carol Herman excepted, of course), but I'm cetain that Freeman Hunt, Synova, DBQ, Shanna, and a number of other female regulars would have said basically the same thing, though they possibly would have been tactful enough to avoid using terms like "vagina." :)

J said...

"sorepaw" aka byro the degreeless, aka Hulk Hogan of the tempe slums: I've been to one Eastern Division APA meeting.

A blatant lie--then that's what A-tards specialize in.

J said...

Alas, Lyssa that's not what she said. She's suggesting the smokers are unhealthy, that philosophy's male dominated, and that the phil-boys were drinking . All true statements more than likely. It doesn't seem unreasonable to prevent smoking and drinking at public gatherings.

(note--the spinelli troll's a rabid misogynist, not to say religious fundamentalist aka Byro the teeshirt sales-dolt from Sac)

William said...

I would think the attraction of philosophy is that it offers refuge from the world of banal pursuits. As a group, I would not think of philosophers as a bunch of high living, hard drinking, cigar smoking horndogs who jump at the chance to attend APA events and raise a little hell....For the average introvert---and in this field if you're not an introvert you're in the wrong field--sitting on either side of the job interview desk is an excruciating experience. I just don't think this is the kind of event that men enjoy any more than women. However, it must be noted that men can wear Rockport shoes with less inhibitions about it than women.

J said...

I knew the glibertarians of Ahouse wd dig that.

Why even the Romneyite bozos should agree on the evils of...the baccy biz

traditionalguy said...

The most important question to be answered in a Philosopheress job interview is the oldest question on earth: Is she a good fuck.

Back to basics. God created them, male and female he created them.

ndspinelli said...
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TMink said...

Women can't handle unstructured situations. What poppycock! The false cries of discrimination are really getting more and more comical.


Fred Drinkwater said...

Uncomfortable shoes, eh.

Let me put in a plug for a startup that I investigated last year.
Oh! Shoes claims to integrate athletic shoe footbed design principles, new tech, and "Italian style", to produce a comfortable & fashionable shoe.

As it happened, Mrs. FD and I did not invest in the company, but Mrs. FD did like the shoes.

WV: poolimp. Hell's bells, don't let Titus see this.

EMD said...

Do woman want to ruin everything, or just stuff men usually like?

Scott M said...

Do woman want to ruin everything, or just stuff men usually like?

Just the stuff men like to do without them.

Freeman Hunt said...

I don't get it. I'm a woman. I don't see the problem.

In fact, it sounds like a huge improvement over the usual formal event of this type. Just go to a cocktail party and talk? That's it? What's the big deal? If they're all into philosophy, they should have plenty to talk about. They should have years worth of material to talk about! The event ought to be fun.

Freeman Hunt said...

Women like this make me sick, and, as an ambitious woman myself, I am embarassed both for any by them. I hear similar all of the time from my peers, when they complain, for example, that demanding or intense work schedules are unfair to women.

Either you're good enough to play with the boys, or your not.

I agree. If you can't handle that level of work given your personal commitments, you don't need to be working at that level. An entire field doesn't need to be reoriented around your personal life choices.

sorepaw said...
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sorepaw said...
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sorepaw said...
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Freeman Hunt said...

My husband often has to spend money and huge amounts of time putting together large proposals which he must talk about and sell over informal meetings or meals. Giant chunks of income normally hang on the success or failure of these pitches.

Very similar. Such is life. One may as well get used to it.

Henry said...

...the misery of being exploited by capitalists is nothing compared to the misery of not being exploited at all. -- Joan Robinson

Is the misery of being exploited by academics even worse than nothing? I don't think so.

William said...

I think the whole concept of throwing "smokers" in a place where smoking is banned is a kind of subtle discrimination in favor of logical positivists.

William said...

I would hesitate to send any unescorted woman to a job interview in a hotel room with Sarte or Rousseau.

JorgXMcKie said...

I hear stuff like this a lot. It amounts to:

"I desperately want to join your group, but first you're going to have to change to my specifications."

I have no idea why anyone would ever think this is a useful attitude.

OTOH, I have no idea why the trolls here think spewing idiocy/insanity on a comment stream is worthwhile, either.

William said...

And don't even get me started on Hannah Arendt and Haedigger. Someday someone will blow the lid off the sexual abuse and sordid squalor that are so rife in Philosophy Departments. Less philo and more soph, I say.

JorgXMcKie said...

Oh, and one of our latest and unsuccessful job applicants spent a great deal of time over lunch and dinner [and I suspect breakfast but I wasn't there] explaining in some detail how much better the university s/he was getting the PhD from [not in hand yet, of course] was than here at our university where s/he was applying for a position and indicating how much we'd need to change. Evidently to meet her/his standards and thus be worthy of having them deign to work for.

Did I mention we had over 150 applicants, at least 40 of whom were well-qualified?

JorgXMcKie said...

William, the rule in the Philosophy Dept here is, "Keep your hands off the sophs." :-)

andinista said...

D diff twixt chicks and doodz Wen chicas complainn, deyr complaintss r valid, so xpect somebodd to fix it When doodzz complain, dey alredy know its snafu, naught can be dun, so its jus sharin tribal knowledge

Princesses n queens xpect somebody to hop to wen dey speek Doodzz know, don whiin, deel wit it, fixxit, or be Kirk at Kobiyashi Maru

N articl like dis, shes lookin 4 a job-jar or a blank spot on a honey-do list, n a knight w shinin armor

ndspinelli said...

andanista, I get, and enjoy your parody. I'm still waiting for my Berlitz tapes.

andinista said...

Thx, ndspinelli, ur a gentlpeep

Bes way 2 lernn txlingo (any langual) is likk a babb duz Jes start takkin n lissenin Helps 2 hv kids wat will sharr soma deyrr txtss w u Rullz are eezy:

1 no xtra ltrs, spellin flexi
2 fastr to repeet ltrs nsted of diffs
3 emo inflection of nouns n verbs
4 spell likk u feelllll

Meade said...

5 kepp t shrt n peeps mit evn stp n redd t

andinista said...

K, gudd 1st effrt, now put somm idiosync emo init

jamboree said...

Haven't read the article, but I would think if the folks who are doing the hiring are in the main older males, the casual atmosphere puts the whole fuckability -in- trade issue front and center.

Not good for a pregnant woman; probably "safest" for a married woman as you can still be hot and yet are completely off the table. Even if you are an unhot married woman your unhotness will not be not overtly offensive to the males there.

Promising ingenues can get by on innocence, or If you are the type of attractive woman who is interested and good at playing that angle, you may have an advantage over the het guys. Gay guys dealing with gay guys are very very good at negotiating this because they are, by and large, okay with such trades.

Every example had sexual overtones that have to be negotiated that just aren't there if you're a het guy dealing with het guys.

rhhardin said...

Philosophers' defense:

Descartes defense: How do you know you're really a woman? Your senses might be deceiving you.

Wittgenstein defense: The feminist langauge game. Who always has standing to say what.

Derrida defense: The feminine is the wild card in the male hierarchy that falls victim to its own acceptance of that hierarchy, even in being against it.

rhhardin said...

The Nietzsche defense

Supposing truth is a woman - what then? Are there not grounds for the suspicion that all philosophers, insofar as they were dogmatists, have been very inexpert about women? That the gruesome seriousness, the clumsy obtrusiveness with which they have usually approached truth so far have been awkward and very improper methods for winning a woman's heart?

edgeofthesandbox said...

Calling this event a “smoker” is a throwback. I bet $10,000 few people in attendance smokes cigarettes. If anything, real smokers are probably made to leave the building... speaking of discrimination.

Don M said...

Pregnant woman breastfeeding.

They do make breast pumps, so some can be stored in the refridgerator for the nursing child still home.

If she is not smart enough to do that, I figure she is not going to get a philosophy job from me.

Chip S. said...

the rule in the Philosophy Dept here is, "Keep your hands off the sophs."

Philosophers--of all people--shouldn't take a hands-off approach to sophists.

がんこもん said...

Oh, how perfectly awful! Think of the agony of actually having to (gasp) wear high heels and sip drinks in a low-light room. Horrors!

ou've got to be kidding me. Once upon a time, philosophy was intended to teach undergraduates to think. Nowadays, it is simply an easy path to a law degree by lazy people. Parrot your professor's views and bingo - you have an easy A.

Perhaps I'm being too hard on this pathetic example of humanity, but when the going gets tough, the tough get going. This poor helpless baby is too busy having vapors. It's people like this that give women a bad name - she is busy proving that regardless of her paper qualifications, she's useless in anything that actually might require real work.

がんこもん said...

Every woman has the right to never be made uncomfortable.

12/13/11 8:15 AM

Please tell me you're not serious? There is no right for anyone 'not to be made uncomfortable'. In fact, the whole point of the First Amendment is to protect speech that makes others uncomfortable.

Attending this 'smoker' was the woman's choice. If she doesn't like it, she shouldn't go there. If she is too busy nursing, then maybe she ought to think of her family and not put all of them through this. It sounds like she's had other children, so she ought to be aware of how much she can and cannot deal with during this time. That is how adults handle things. Guess this particular person is neither very mature or very sensible.

Chip S. said...

Please tell me you're not serious?

You might consider investing in one of these.

andinista said...

D Rand defense:

Quitt beinn a moochr, and tryin to shaamm the Profsrs into givin uu d powr of sanction of d victm Expecc no unernd respecc, n providd value 4 value. Examinn yr premissses, realizz deyr ar no contradiccs, n no confliccs twixt ratial peeps.

[Izz dis likk some sorta Randwin's Law?]