When Sally Haslanger, a prominent feminist philosophy professor at theMassachusetts Institute of Technology, returned to her Cambridge office in August after a summer abroad, she found a padded envelope with no return address waiting for her.
She opened the package while sorting through her other junk mail and stuck her hand inside to feel what was there. … MIT’s Environmental Health and Safety team confirmed that the substance was feces, according to a university police report. But Haslanger wasn’t as confounded as one might expect a well-respected philosopher to be when faced with a mysterious package of poop. That’s because three other philosophers also received shit in the mail last summer.
They are publicly implicating U Chicago’s Brian Leiter.
One of the most powerful players in philosophy is Leiter, who in 1989 founded the Philosophical Gourmet Report, a highly influential ranking of philosophy PhD programs that the New York Times has called a “bible for prospective graduate students.” Leiter and his report have drawn controversy for decades, but the shit really hit the fan, so to speak, in 2014, during a convoluted clash that began when Leiter felt personally attacked by a blog post Jenkins wrote. In it, she pledged to treat other philosophers with respect, especially those more junior or “professionally vulnerable.”