Blacks in Philosophy in the US

[Reposting from August in the hopes of further discussion.]

In “What is the State of Blacks in Philosophy?” a recent article in Critical Philosophy of Race, authors Tina Fernandes Botts (Michigan), Liam Kofi Bright (Carnegie Mellon), Myisha Cherry (John Jay College), Guntur Mallarangeng (San Francisco), and Quayshawn Spencer (San Francisco) “introduce into philosophical discussion the preliminary results of an empirical study on the state of blacks in philosophy.” Among their findings:

– Blacks make up just 1.32 percent of the total number of people professionally affiliated (as grad students or faculty) with U.S. philosophy departments.

– Approximately 0.88 percent of U.S. philosophy Ph.D. students are black.

– Approximately 4.3 percent of U.S. tenured philosophy professors are black.

– Of black philosophy Ph.D. students in the U.S., half are female. That is about double the rate of the U.S. philosophy Ph.D. student population as a whole.

– The distribution of black female Ph.D. students across philosophy Ph.D. pro-grams is much lower than black males. Specifically, 69 percent of black female Ph.D. students are at Penn State.

– The top areas of specialization for U.S. black philosophers are (1) Africana, (2) Race, (3) Social and Political, (4) Ethics, and (5) Continental philosophy.

The article contains more data, along with figures and commentary, and is accessible here.

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