Thursday, October 31, 2013

Pembroke College philosophers in the news

Peter J. King is in trouble for his comments on stereotypically obnoxious behavior from rugby players here. It looks as though there was some plan, or a "funny" pretend plan, by one or more members of the Pembroke rugby club to spike women's drinks or at least get them drunk in order to have sex with them. The latter used to be considered acceptable behavior in some circles but is now generally regarded as rape. King's reference to the idea as a "bit of unpleasant undergraduate stupidity" is not going down well. It is unpleasant and stupid, so I wouldn't be too hard on him over this. If it was a real conspiracy to rape then of course it's far worse than stupid, but it's not clear to me that it was ever anything more than a poorly executed attempt at a bad (both offensive and unfunny) joke. And perhaps dismissive condescension is more likely to discourage this kind of thing in future than more earnest criticism. I don't know.

King also says: 
I consider the notion of epistemic injustice a pseudo-philosophical concept designed to enable people to publish more empty articles and organise more empty conferences for the purposes of career advancement.    
No one seems to have pointed out (although the article has been edited and perhaps some comments have been removed) that it was a Pembroke alumna (before King's time there) who wrote the book on the subject. Well, it's been pointed out now.  

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