On Sunday 23rd and Monday 24th of June, a very successful Conference by Women in Philosophy was held at the University of Groningen. Over 80 attendees enjoyed seventeen talks by young women philosophers, a keynote by prof. dr. Heather Widdows, two symposia with experienced women in philosophy and an informal roundtable discussion about what it is like to be a woman in academic philosophy. It was an inspiring, motivating and empowering event.
Like elsewhere in academia, women are underrepresented in academic philosophy. The Conference by Women in Philosophy wants to challenge this situation. It is committed to creating a more balanced environment and to empowering women to make the academic space their own. At the event, young women philosophers presented their work to peers and inspired and motivated one another. Productive alliances were forged, not only by exchanging research, but also by sharing experiences, tips and advice with peers.
Participants benefited incredibly from the presence of experienced women in academic philosophy, who functioned as representatives and role models for the early career researchers. Prof. dr. Heather Widdows (University of Birmingham) gave a brilliant keynote lecture on ‘Understanding the rising demands of beauty’. A symposium on ‘neurodiversity’ was featured by prof. dr. Trudy Dehue (University of Groningen), dr. Kristien Hens (University of Antwerp) and dr. Annelies Kleinherenbrink (University of Tilburg). Another symposium on ‘feminist philosophy and exclusion’ was featured by dr. Charlotte Knowles (University of Groningen) and dr. Amanda Cawston (University of Tilburg).
This year’s edition was the sixth Conference by Women in Philosophy. The organizing committee (consisting of PhD researchers from Dutch and Flemish universities) is very pleased to see the conference is growing every year: in number of participants, but also as a collective movement. On to the 2020 edition!
Photography by Marieke Duiven