Maybe we don’t like feeling invisible

6 Aug

What is it like to be a woman in philosophy?

One of the reasons that’s often floated to explain why there are so few women in philosophy is “Women don’t like the combative style.”

One of the things this claim misses is that male philosophers often don’t include female philosophers in conversation from the start. My experience in graduate school was usually one of simply being ignored: a group of male students is in the lounge talking shop. I walk up and join the group. The conversation stops. Or I chime in on a point and everyone just stares at the floor. I never got to be included in the combat, even when I wanted to take part in it.

Maybe the combat isn’t what drives women away. Maybe it’s that we don’t like feeling invisible.

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