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Kathryn Gines: July 2013

posted Jul 6, 2013, 10:26 AM by Peggy DesAutels   [ updated Jul 6, 2013, 10:33 AM ]

Kathryn T. Gines
Penn State University


Kathryn T. Gines, Ph.D. is assistant professor of philosophy at Penn State University and founding director of the Collegium of Black Women Philosophers.  Her scholarship, teaching, and service reflect a strong commitment to increasing diversity within philosophy, expanding the canon, and recruiting/retaining women and men of color into the discipline.  Her primary research and teaching interests lie in Continental philosophy, Africana Philosophy, Black Feminist Philosophy, and Critical Philosophy of Race.   Gines has published articles on race, racism, and post-racialism, assimilation, feminism, and intersectionality.  She also co-edited an anthology titled Convergences: Black Feminism and Continental Philosophy (SUNY Press, 2010).  In her book Hannah Arendt and the Negro Question (Indiana University Press, 2014) Gines argues that a flaw in Arendt’s orientation towards systems of anti-Black racism lies in the fact that she sees the “Negro question” as a “Negro problem” rather than a white problem.  Additionally, Arendt’s rigid distinctions between the political, the social, and the private undergird her analysis of anti-Black racism, consequently distorting her understanding of and judgments about it.  More specifically, Arendt’s delineation of the Negro question as a social issue prevents her from recognizing that anti-Black racism is also a political phenomenon.  Gines’ most recent research project offers a philosophical analysis of seminal readings in intersectionality by women of color feminists in the U.S. context while also examining new dimensions of intersectionality emerging from transnational and decolonial feminisms.

 Gines founded the Collegium of Black Women Philosophers (CBWP) in 2007 when she was an assistant professor at Vanderbilt University (the inaugural conference was spotlighted in The Chronicle of Higher Education, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and Diverse Issues in Higher Education).  The annual CBWP conference for students and professors across ranks is now held at Penn State University.  Each year the CBWP conference brings in major scholars (e.g. Anita Allen, Patricia Hill Collins, Joy James, and Patricia McFadden), hosts approximately 30 visiting Black women faculty and students in philosophy, and offers professional development workshops.  Gines details her work with this organization in “Being a Black Woman Philosopher: Reflections on Founding the Collegium of Black Women Philosophers” (a musing published in Hypatia 2011).  She is also the director and conference organizer for Penn State’s Cultivating Underrepresented Students in Philosophy (CUSP), a program designed to recruit traditionally underrepresented groups into philosophy

 Gines is a founding co-editor (with Robert Bernasconi and Paul C. Taylor) of the new peer-reviewed journal Critical Philosophy of Race (Penn State University Press) for which she had the role of special editor for the inaugural issue (January 2013) featuring a critical commentary by Charles Mills as well as an afterword by Linda Martín Alcoff.  The theme for this special issue, “Critical Philosophy of Race Beyond the Black-white Binary,” was inspired by a conference Gines organized on the same topic.  Gines is also a certified coach for the National Center for Faculty Diversity & Development, a certified yoga instructor, and a specialist in work, life, and wellness balance.

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