Lorraine Code gives inaugural talk in the upcoming feminist lecture series

Lorraine Code, York’s Distinguished Research Professor in Philosophy and Social & Political Thought, will give the inaugural talk in the 2009 York U50 Lecture Series, Feminist Knowledge Reconsidered: Feminism and the Academy at York.

A Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, Code will present "Thinking Ecologically: The Legacy of Rachel Carson" Feb. 26 from 2 to 4pm at in the Founders Assembly Hall, 152 Founders College, Keele campus. The lecture is hosted by York’s Centre for Feminist Research and sponsored by York’s Institute for Feminist Legal Studies.

"Thinking Ecologically: The Legacy of Rachel Carson," draws on Code’s 2006 book Ecological Thinking: The Politics of Epistemic Location. She will examine the social and political significance of Carson’s knowledge-gathering practices as exemplary for a feminist-informed social epistemology. The author of Silent Spring and a political activist during the Kennedy era in the US, Carson gained a reputation as a subversive, controversial scientist whose work disturbed the American scientific establishment.

Left: Lorraine Code

Code will show how Carson’s so-called subversiveness attached, in part, to her respect for evidence provided by members of the public, as it often sat uneasily with the findings of establishment science, and to her relentless campaign against chemical interventions that failed to respect the integrity of natural processes.

Questions about what feminist epistemologists can learn from Carson, and about the gender politics that shaped, and continue to shape, the reception of her work will be central to the discussion.

As a feminist philosopher, Code’s current Social Sciences & Humanities Research Council of Canada-funded research project is on "Vulnerability, Incredulity, Ignorance, and Trust." She specializes in epistemology, feminist epistemology and the politics of knowledge; epistemic responsibility; 20th-century French philosophy; ecological theory; and post-colonial theory.

Code is the author of Epistemic Responsibility; What Can She Know? Feminist Theory and the Construction of Knowledge; and Rhetorical Spaces: Essays on Gendered Locations. In addition, she is the editor of the Routledge Encyclopedia of Feminist Theories and Feminist Interpretations of Hans-Georg Gadamer. With Kathryn Hamer, she has published an English translation of Michèle Le Doeuff’s Le Sexe du savoir, titled The Sex of Knowing.

The lecture is open to anyone wishing to attend.

There are four more upcoming talks in the 2009 York U50 Lecture Series, Feminist Knowledge Reconsidered: Feminism and the Academy.

  • March 23 at 2pm, University of London Professor Nadje Sadiq Al-Ali will deliver “Iraqi Women Between Dictatorship, Sanctions, War and Occupation”.
  • Arpil 9 at 2pm, York Professor Ann Shteir will present "Scholarship is the Restitution of Decayed Intelligence: Writing Feminist Cultural History”.
  • Sept. 24 at 2pm, Syracuse University women’s studies Professor Chandra T. Mohanty will talk about “Sites of Feminist Knowledge Production: the Academy and Beyond”.
  • Nov. 12 at 2pm, Elisabeth Young-Bruehl, a professor at the Columbia University Center for Psychoanalytic Training & Research, will present “Sexual Diversity in Cosmopolitan Perspective."