UPsalon Reading Cycle WiSe 20/21

Starting in the winter semester 2020, we are introducing the ‘UPsalon Reading Cycle’ – a space to read and discuss philosophical works dealing with gender, race, sexuality, or disability focusing on one theme per semester.

In the WS 20/21, we will focus on ‘Feminist Epistemology and Feminist Philosophy of Science’. Power structures in society and knowledge intersect in everyday life, as well as in science and academia. Feminist epistemologists and philosophers of science investigate how this manifests, how it disadvantages subordinated groups, and how these disadvantages can be remedied. In this semester’s reading cycle, we want to focus on questions such as:

  • How do gendered power relations impact knowledge production?
  • What is situated knowledge and can knowledge ever be objective?
  • Why are insights from feminist epistemology central to debates in social epistemology?
  • What is the benefit of diverse research communities?
  • How does gender bias impact research?


Schedule & Material

We will focus on texts from Heidi Grasswick’s anthology ‘Feminist Epistemology and Philosophy of Science’ (2011). Here are the dates and texts:

  • Oct 20th: Heidi Grasswick: “Introduction” (p.xiii-xix); Phyllis Rooney: “The Marginalization of Feminist Epistemology and what that Reveals about Epistemology ‘Proper’” (chapter 1)
  • Nov 3rd: Gaile Pohlhaus Jr.: “Wrongful Requests and Strategic Refusals to Understand” (chapter 11)
  • Nov 17th: Sandra Harding: “Interrogating the Modernity vs Tradition Contrast: Whose Science and Technology for Whose Social Progress?” (chapter 5)
  • Dec 1st: Alison Wylie: “What Knowers Know Well. Women, Work and the Academy” (chapter 8)
  • Dec 15th: Kristen Intemann: “Diversity and Dissent in Science: Does Democracy always serve Feminist Aims?” (chapter 6)
  • Jan 12th: TBA – depending on everyone’s interest
  • Jan 26th: Heidi Grasswick: „Liberatory Epistemology and Sharing of Knowledge: Querying the Norms” (chapter 12)

The authors discuss a variety of topics in feminist epistemology and philosophy of science and give an insight into recent work in the field.