“I’m just so sorry this hasn’t improved”

Posted: April 27, 2012 by Jender in failure to take women seriously

I just found your site by accident and wanted to thank you for voicing, so honestly, what many of us have felt. I was a “woman in philosophy” and it was difficult. Sexism was a problem, but I hoped that this had changed (I’m 42.) I was in a Phd program beginning in ’96 and had schools in and around NYC offering me scholarships because they were desperate to appear diverse by enrolling more women. Once enrolled, I found that sexism was rampant. I was belittled by numerous professors when I spoke up, was encouraged to accept a less challenging TA position than my male counterparts, despite being a stronger candidate for the others. I spoke with one of my undergraduate professor’s and she said it was “to be expected.” I ended up leaving my program.

I’m just so sorry that this hasn’t improved. I hope it’s better than when I attended, but stay strong! It’s an important field and it needs more women. I had only 2 female philosophy professors for my entire undergraduate career. I’m proud of you (and all the younger women who are pushing the boundaries) and appreciate what you’re doing. For all of us.

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