A feminist glaciology

feminism-glacier


Many readers will be familiar with the famous Sokal hoax paper, in which physicist Alan Sokal wrote a nonsensical article on the “hermeneutics of quantum gravity” and got it published in a sociology journal. Other more recent examples of accepted papers include a completely computer-generated mathematics paper and a repeated request to be removed from a mailing list.

Now it seems that climate science has fallen for a similar joke paper. The journal Progress in Human Geography (impact factor 5, which is quite high) has published an article Glaciers, gender, and science: A feminist glaciology framework for global environmental change research

Excerpts below are taken from just the first 3 pages of this 24-page masterpiece, plus a final quote from the conclusions. HT David Rose and Barbara Hewson.


“Glaciers are key icons of climate change and global environmental change. However, the relationships among gender, science, and glaciers – particularly related to epistemological questions about the production of glaciological knowledge – remain understudied.”

“Merging feminist postcolonial science studies and feminist political ecology, the feminist glaciology framework generates robust analysis of gender, power, and epistemologies in dynamic social-ecological systems, thereby leading to more just and equitable science and human-ice interactions.”

“A critical but overlooked aspect of the human dimensions of glaciers and global change research is the relationship between gender and glaciers.”

“Through a review and synthesis of a multi-disciplinary and wide-ranging literature on human-ice relations, this paper proposes a feminist glaciology framework to analyze human-glacier dynamics, glacier narratives and discourse, and claims to credibility and authority of glaciological knowledge through the lens of feminist studies.”

“A combination of feminist postcolonial science studies and feminist political ecology provide the intellectual foundation for feminist glaciology.”

“Feminist glaciology is rooted in, and combines, both feminist science studies and postcolonial science studies to meaningfully shift present-day glacier and ice sciences.”

“The response to simplistic ‘ice is just ice’ discourse is not merely to foreground or single out women and their experiences – that would simply perpetuate binaries and boundaries and ignore deeper foundations. Rather, it is a larger integration of human approaches and sensibilities with the existing dominant physical sciences. Global environmental change research must pluralize its ontologies, epistemologies, and sensibilities.”


Updates:

The “research” was carried out on a $412,930 NSF grant, full details here.

One of the authors seems to be proud that his article is the ‘most-read’ at the journal.

In reply, the journal says that the paper will only be freely available for two weeks, so make sure you download a copy and save it now for future reference.

5 March: The paper now seems to have “gone viral”, with a blog post about it at WUWT, plus various other blogs, several threads at reddit, and CFACT, Reason, etc, BH, even the WSJ.

10 March: The story continues to run:
Feds Paid $709,000 To Academic Who Studies How Glaciers Are Sexist
For the Silliest Academic Research Paper, the Oscar Goes to……
Feminism and icebergs: a new low in climate ‘science’
Climate Deniers Mock ‘Feminist Glaciology’ Study
I Read the Famous Feminist Glaciology Paper So You Don’t Have To
And there are thousands of references to the paper on twitter.
NYT and Fox News.

56 thoughts on “A feminist glaciology

  1. IMO, there is certainly one physical entity shared by glaciers and feminists that deserves further correlation studies: cold; i.e., as glaciers melt during a warming climate, do feminists ‘warm up’? Or is it an inverse correlation?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hey crazies. The paper is real- the product of great research and a great research team. Thanks for checking it out and engaging with it in a thoughtful manner.

    Like

  3. That this is real is unbelievable. That it was funded to the tune of $400k by NSF has me referring this post to Rep. Smith’s congressional science oversight committee. NSF needs a thorough housecleaning. First Shukla, and now this.

    Liked by 4 people

  4. The article is real, and so are the first two articles in the bibliography:

    Seema Arora-Jonsson (2011) “Virtue and vulnerability: Discourses on women, gender and climate change”:
    (from the abstract)
    “In the limited literature on gender and climate change, two themes predominate – women as vulnerable or virtuous in relation to the environment. Two viewpoints become obvious: women in the South will be affected more by climate change than men in those countries and that men in the North pollute more than women.”
    and
    Allison EA (2015) “The spiritual significance of glaciers in an age of climate change.”

    The latter article is quoted by Mike Hulme in Varieties of Religious Engagement with Climate Change which is his contribution to the Routledge Handbook of Religion and Ecology.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Just to clarify, yes I was aware that the paper was supposed to be serious. Calling it a spoof was my little joke. It’s a form of Poe’s law – the article is so ridiculous that it’s a bit hard to tell, as Michael Roberts says. I mean, if you were to try to write a spoof article ridiculing the pseuds in sociology who make a living at taxpayers expense as hangers-on to climatism, could you come up with anything better than this?

    Liked by 5 people

  6. After looking over this paper again, I am flabbergasted that there is not a single reference or comment about Queen Elsa, the feature character in Walt Disney’s movie Frozen, and the ‘cold powers’ that she wields through her feelings — and her famous comment: “The cold never bothered me anyway.” Having watched this movie at least 20 times with my two youngest granddaughters, I can assure you that they would be highly offended concerning this oversight; they wear Elsa dresses, Elsa underwear, Elsa socks, Elsa nightgowns, and even shoes with Elsa emblems. The youngest who is not yet 3 years old can even sing “Let It Go.” Have none of the authors any small daughters or granddaughters?

    Liked by 2 people

  7. £291,481.37 for THAT?

    Bloody hell, I’m in the wrong job!

    Or rather, I was before I retired.

    Like

  8. Please tell me that the $412,930 NSF research grant was also a hoax. We now live in a time of post-normal science. Sadly, the question needs to be asked in all seriousness: did someone, somewhere, receive other people’s money to write this utter bollox?

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  9. Literally, I don’t know what to write. I want to believe that this is a hoax but you’re telling me it’s not? There is no sane response to this ‘study’. You can’t build upon it because it has no foundation. You can’t deconstruct it because it has no form or structure – it quite simply is 100%, prime, unalloyed, grade A bollox; post-normal, post-colonial, post everything that was sane and reasonable, premium bullshit that defies analysis, categorisation or measurement. So I’ll simply call it crap and move on.

    ” . . . . the journal says that the paper will only be freely available for two weeks, so make sure you download a copy and save it now for future reference.”

    Two weeks is mercifully short, but still too long to wait to flush a turd. I certainly wouldn’t want to contaminate MY hard drive with it!

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  10. More details of the grant funding are here – it’s a 5-year research grant from 2013-2018. There’s a lot about glaciology but no mention of feminism. Most of the money will be spent on paying the salary of a researcher. Note that three other papers have also been written on the same grant, so the research project appears to be excellent value for money.

    There’s an article about the paper in a local Oregon newspaper: Toward a “feminist glaciology” at the University of Oregon. This includes the following important advice from the lead researcher: “the information gathered from the social sciences and humanities needs to taken more seriously.”.

    We are honoured to have a thoughtful and constructive comment from one of the authors of the paper here at cliscep.

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  11. This makes me wonder what they discuss over lunch.

    This is a very challenging time west of the pond. We are learning that there may be more than one tooth fairy. Not only that, we are forced to choose.

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  12. M Jackson, the co-author who comments ironically above, is currently investigating glacier-society relationships in Iceland.

    This article is causing a lot of confusion elsewhere on the internet. For example, at https://www.reddit.com/r/KotakuInAction/comments/48xzly/socjus_a_feminist_glaciology_another_sokal/

    commenter Hayesone says:

    “It’s clearly a joke, but by real researchers. A quick look reveals the Instagram account of one of the authors of the paper (Instagram user mlejackson) which has legit photos from a research site in Iceland, but also references to an article from The Onion about “growing” glaciers like plants and pictures of a “glacier garden”. Scientists with a sense of humour.”

    Michael Roberts at
    https://michaelroberts4004.wordpress.com/2016/03/03/a-feminist-glaciology/
    asks: “Is it a piss take?”
    and commenter Paul Braterman replies:
    “Amusingly, what you are reblogging is from a denialist climate site, under the false flag “Climate skepticism”, which refers to James Delingpole’s “importance as a philosopher” and backs Brexit.”

    Like

  13. It’s not a spoof, unless dozens of other papers are also spoofs. Here’s a sample:

    – Virtue and vulnerability: Discourses on women, gender and climate change.
    – Gender on Ice: American Ideologies of Polar Expeditions.
    – Gender and geoengineering. Hypatia 29: 651–669.
    – Mountain ecosystems and women: Opportunities for sustainable development and conservation.
    – The history of ice: How glaciers became an endangered species.
    – The gender of ice and snow.
    – Climbing like a girl: An exemplary adventure in feminist phenomenology.
    – Feminist geographies ‘beyond’ gender: De-coupling feminist research and the gendered subject.
    – Sex and death in the rational world of defense intellectuals.
    – Do Glaciers Listen? Local Knowledge, Colonial Encounters, and Social Imagination.
    – Do glaciers really listen?
    – Are glaciers ‘good to think with’? Recognising indigenous environmental knowledge.
    – Vertical Margins: Mountaineering and the Landscapes of Neoimperialism.
    – The ‘hypermasculine’ landscape of high-altitude mountaineering.
    – Ecofeminism: Women, Animals, Nature.
    – Sex for money is sex for money: The illegality of pornographic film as prostitution.
    – The Meaning of Ice: People and Sea Ice in Three Arctic Communities.
    – Gender and declining fisheries in Lobitos, Peru
    – Towards a feminist political ecology of women, global change, and vulnerable waterscapes.
    – Pushing feminism, politics, and ecology in new directions with feminist political ecology.
    – Crampons and cook pots: The democratization and feminization of adventure on Aconcagua.
    – The Death of Nature: Women, Ecology, and the Scientific Revolution.
    – The question of subjectivity in three emerging feminist science studies frameworks: Feminist postcolonial science studies, new feminist materialisms, and queer ecologies.
    – Nature’s Altars: Mountains, Gender, and American Environmentalism.
    – Masculinist epistemologies and the politics of fieldwork in Latin Americanist geography.
    – No climate justice without gender justice: An overview of the issues.
    – A Political Ecology of Women, Water and Global Environmental Change.
    – Tibetan pastoralists’ vulnerability to climate change: A political ecology analysis of snowstorm coping capacity.

    It’s possible that some or all of these are useful additions to human knowledge. It seems more likely though that cross-breeding feminism with climate is just a handy way of getting funding, jobs, and free trips to Iceland.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Geoff, there’s another discussion thread at
    http://www.debatepolitics.com/environment-and-climate-issues/248085-feminist-glaciology.html
    where someone says:

    You don’t need much to see how hoaxy it is… quite funny, really.

    “Merging feminist postcolonial science studies and feminist political ecology, the feminist glaciology framework generates robust analysis of gender, power, and epistemologies in dynamic social-ecological systems, thereby leading to more just and equitable science and human-ice interactions.”
    “A critical but overlooked aspect of the human dimensions of glaciers and global change research is the relationship between gender and glaciers.”
    “The response to simplistic ‘ice is just ice’ discourse is not merely to foreground or single out women and their experiences – that would simply perpetuate binaries and boundaries and ignore deeper foundations.”
    Come on – that’s ****ing hysterical. Feminist postcolonial science studies… and relationships between gender and glaciers.

    LOL

    I’m sorry for creating confusion about whether this paper was intended as a hoax or not. Or am I?

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I’m still trying to reconcile:

    “…it repeats the demands for increased presence of humanities and social science perspectives in global environmental change research, policy, and broader public discourse”

    with:

    “Hey crazies…”

    😉

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Book now to avoid disappointment:

    http://sydney.edu.au/environment-institute/events/feminist-queer-anticolonial-propositions-for-hacking-the-anthropocene/

    One of the scheduled speakers plugged that on Twitter today: Kathryn Yusoff, a climate change curator whose previous academic work has taken her to some very exotic places, literally and metaphorically. For example, she once took a cruise to Antarctica and photographed Action Man figures in mocked-up Antarctic landscapes as a means of providing ‘an antidote to contemporary investment in heroic narratives’ of polar exploration, with the Action Man figures ‘re-routing’ such narratives ‘into different considerations of meaning’ by creating ‘a visual performance of polar inertia, rather than polar performances.’ She defined ‘polar intertia’ as…

    …the opposite end of the capitalist drive. The journey across the polar plateau is the capitalist drive at rest, nothing is present that is not functional (apart from the body) as opposed to the endless consumption and frantic material engagement of late capitalism. There is unity in this opposition. In both journeys there is never enough consumption to nourish – to fill the gaps between needs and desires. Is the Antarctic explorer capitalism’s comic fool?

    Who could argue with that?

    A while later, she made four plastic snow globes and exhibited them at the British Library in order to… Actually, I never worked out exactly what the snow globes were for. They were part of a multi-year, multi-grant-funded, globetrotting effort to ‘creatively visualize the scale and scope of climactic [sic] changes at the North and South Poles by identifying and disseminating climactic [sic] data to a broader public to convey awareness about global weather phenomena.’ (And tsunamis, which, for a while, Yusoff treated as a weather phenomenon.) So the globes were probably some sort of data.

    Anyway… If you’re going to be in Sydney next month, the Feminist, Queer, Anticolonial Propositions etc. symposium is probably a hot ticket, so book early.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Amazing. Simply amazing.

    But as I was reading through this verbiage I was very strongly reminded of a piece I had published (circa 1995) on my own (now long dormant, but back in those halcyon days quite popular) pre-blog personal website … thanks to the actual author’s gracious permission.

    View from here, so to speak, is that the author, Professor Robin Leidner – who was then with the University of Pennsylvania’s Department of Sociology – may well have established a very amusing trend. See: Latke vs Hamentash: A Materialist-Feminist Analysis

    Like

  18. I hesitate to go further in poking fun at this paper for two reasons:

    1) There’s a long history of conservatives poking fun at the obscurer corners of science as part of their “What are our taxes being spent on?” campaign. Hence the Thatcher policy of demanded practical benefits as a justification for funding, and hence snail experts repositioning themselves as global warming doom mongers.

    2) There’s obviously a place for feminist and post-colonial studies: rescuing from oblivion figures in history who’ve been neglected because they were women or belonged to inferior races or whatever. The problem with this paper, as far as I can see, is that its entire content is no more than an adaptation of my first sentence. All it’s saying is: “It’s important to rescue from oblivion figures in glaciology who’ve been neglected because they were women or belonged to inferior races.” (And of course you can replace “glaciology” with any activity under the sun and generate a thousand articles.) My daughter recently presented a paper at some academic conference on anarchism and the history of animal rights activism. They didn’t know where to put her so she was filed under “Feminism and Meat”.

    To MJackson and his/her colleagues I’d say: by all means tell us about female explorers and glaciologists, but spare us the accusatory jargon.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. A couple of comments.

    1. I haven’t read the paper, so I don’t know if it is any good, or not. However, none of the criticism here seem to be based on any actual analysis of the paper itself; it seems to be mainly a “this sounds stupid therefore it must be” type of argument.

    2. The post and some of the comments certainly come across as somewhat misogynistic.

    I would expect better from a site that seems to suggest that the goal is scepticism. Oh, hold on, I forgot what site I was on. Sorry, carry on.

    [Geoff: I corrected your spelling before I saw Paul’s remark. Hope you don’t mind.]

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  20. “1. I haven’t read the paper, so I don’t know if it is any good, or not.”

    Wow! Have you been drinking Kool-Aid again?

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  21. Actually, this is quite good because it beautifully illustrates what I suspect is Paul’s own hypocrisy and dishonesty (he really can’t be this stupid). I clearly don’t need to read something to comment on whether your critique appears superficial or not. That should be obvious to anyone with even a modicum of basic reading comprehension. And yet, Paul is implying that I’m critiquing the paper without having read it, which is very obviously not true. Paul, I have to thank you. This has been most enlightening.

    [PM: I am obviously implying no such thing. The only dishonesty exhibited is your own]

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  22. I am obviously implying no such thing.

    Then what are you implying? You accused me of hypocrisy for saying

    Wouldn’t you hate people to think that your judgement of a piece of work is based largely on your biases, rather than a thoughtful analysis of the actual work?

    That’s the post to which you linked in the comment above. However, I’m not judging something without reading it (in fact, if you read things correcly might note then even your supposed examples of me doing so, are not – in fact – me doing so). I’m judging your post and the comments – which I have read and which appear superficial. So, given that you appear to think that you’re some kind of paragon of virtue, maybe you can explain how it’s obviously not what you’re implying, because it very clearly seems to be exactly that. I’m of course – Pauly – not expecting some kind of reasoned response, because that would be so out of character as to be – I suspect – virtually impossible for you to actually do. I also haven’t checked all my spelling (I’m also not sure which big word I spelt incorrectly, but I’ve no doubt there was one).

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  23. ATTP: “1. I haven’t read the paper, so I don’t know if it is any good, or not.”

    That’s never prevented you gobbing off about stuff you have no conception of in the past, has it?

    Tell us, are you really Ken Rice the astrophysicsist or a failed stand-up comedian who has usurped his identity?

    “However, none of the criticism here seem to be based on any actual analysis of the paper itself”

    As usual, you are entirely wrong and just making stuff up in order to abuse people whose sceptical attitude you find inimical to your own ignorant, arrogant, thuggish attitude to disagreement.

    Liked by 4 people

  24. Cat,
    Wow, you’re a sensitive person. So this

    However, none of the criticism here seem to be based on any actual analysis of the paper itself

    leads you to say this

    your own ignorant, arrogant, thuggish attitude to disagreement

    Maybe your and my understanding of arrogant, ignorant and thuggish are different.

    Tell us, are you really Ken Rice the astrophysicsist or a failed stand-up comedian who has usurped his identity?

    Any chance you’re gointg to say who you are, or are you only comfortable throwing out your insults under the protection of a pseudonym?

    Like

  25. ATTP: “Any chance you’re gointg to say who you are, or are you only comfortable throwing out your insults under the protection of a pseudonym?”

    If I ever decide to reveal my identity to an insignificant little irritant like you – the chances of which are vanishingly small, rest assured I shall do so in person.

    I have never liked bullies.

    Liked by 1 person

  26. ATTP, 5 March, 1:31. When it looks like a turd, smells like a turd, and steams like a new turd on snow, you don’t have to stick your hand in it to know it’s a turd.

    Liked by 2 people

  27. ATTP writes:

    “1. I haven’t read the paper, so I don’t know if it is any good, or not. However, none of the criticism here seem to be based on any actual analysis of the paper itself; it seems to be mainly a “this sounds stupid therefore it must be” type of argument.

    2. The post and some of the comments certainly come across as somewhat mysoginistic.”

    I don’t believe that one could actually read the paper and make sense of it from any logistical, scientific standpoint, at least not judging by the absurdly worded extracts that we have so far. It’s feminist gobbledygook, a ‘study’ which exists, not to push the boundaries of knowledge, but to expand the pernicious influence of hard-line feminist ideology into the hard sciences – in this case, glaciological studies.

    To maintain, as you do, that criticism of this ludicrous pseudo-intellectual critical ‘analysis’ of supposedly male-dominated glaciological studies is misogynistic embraces the kind of warped logic that pervades feminist ideology. Whether that warped point of view has worked its way insidiously into your general outlook or you are just paying lip service to it in order to try and score points here I have no idea. Scientific knowledge does NOT have a gender. Women (well most women, maybe not died-in-the-wool feminists) are just as capable of absorbing knowledge of the physical world as are men. So yes, maybe traditionally, more men have gathered and disseminated this knowledge in the past than women. But there is no ‘lens’ which distorts the appreciation of that knowledge according to one’s gender. The very suggestion that we need a ‘feminist glaciology framework for environmental change research’ belittles the role that women can and do play in science and is patronising to women scientists who work very effectively alongside their male colleagues in making sense of the physical world around us. They don’t need nonsensical feminist ideological narratives muddying their work.

    Liked by 2 people

  28. ATTNP:

    I highly recommend that you read the paper as I am certain you will enjoy the rhetorical style employed by the authors. Their pseudo-scientific vocabulary is fabulously creative and far beyond my humble comprehension, since I am not well versed in mystical powers, feminism and teleconnections. Sadly I fear their principal objective was to impress the government bureaucrats who hand out the NSF grants, thereby justifying the disbursement of my tax dollars.

    That the subject of this study is considered ‘science’ — I am frankly appalled when I reflect back to the days when my youngest son, the statistical meteorologist, was competing for a NSF grant in graduate school…and how difficult it was to obtain one in the field of meteorology at that time.

    Liked by 1 person

  29. Cat,

    If I ever decide to reveal my identity to an insignificant little irritant like you – the chances of which are vanishingly small, rest assured I shall do so in person.

    Brilliant, now you sound like a stalker.

    I have never liked bullies.

    Nor have I.

    Like

  30. ATTP
    When you do read the article, I recommend you do what I did; copy and paste it then remove all the references in brackets. You then get a piece of ordinary prose that’s saying: “People think that glaciology is for strong fit men, but women do it too.” There are also references to a kind of parallel thesis that goes: “People think that knowledge and scientific enquiry belongs to western capitalist society, but primitive people (or whatever the current euphemism is) know things too.”

    The beauty of this thesis is that you can repeat it ad infinitum replacing glaciology with any activity you like and substituting for women queers, Tibetan pastoralists, or anyone else. See my extracts from the bibliography above.

    Chinks do it, Japs do it
    Up in Lapland little Lapps do it.
    Let’s do it…

    Liked by 1 person

  31. LOL, hahahahahaha and ROTFL, the ATTP Saturday night comedy show continues.
    So the clown who started off calling himself something like Leftofcentre, then Wottsupwiththat, then ATTP, is now challenging somebody else for using a pseudonym! That’s definitely one to add to the And Then There’s Hypocrisy page. He seems to be unable to open his mouth without making a complete fool of himself.
    In fact I wonder if the person commenting here as ATTP is the real thing or whether it’s Brad Keyes having a laugh.

    Liked by 1 person

  32. Paul,

    LOL, hahahahahaha and ROTFL

    Seriously, how old are you?

    is now challenging somebody else for using a pseudonym!

    Hmm, no I’m not. Seriously, is reading something, thinking about it, and then interpreting it in a manner consistent with the words actually used just too difficult for you? I’ll even highlight the key bit to help you a little

    or are you only comfortable throwing out your insults under the protection of a pseudonym?

    Anyway, this is pretty much going as usual. I guess if the best you can do is misrepresent what others are getting at, then that’s all you’ve got. Doesn’t reflect well on you but I get the impression that you don’t really care.

    That’s definitely one to add to the And Then There’s Hypocrisy page.

    Really? You have an example of me directly insulting someone who didn’t know who I was, while also exposing their name despite them using a pseudonym? Would be surprised if you did as I don’t think I’ve ever done any such thing. Feel free to prove me wrong or – as is much more likely – illustrating that you don’t understand the meaning of “hypocrisy” (and linking to the dictionary definition doesn’t somehow prove that you do).

    [Ridiculing foolish hypocrites isn’t childish. On the subject of childishness, here’s a little quiz. Who was it who recently said on these pages
    “Did … make you cry”? Was it
    (a) Me
    (b) You
    (c) A six-year-old child?]

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  33. “LOL, hahahahahaha and ROTFL

    Seriously, how old are you?”

    Old enough to refrain from childish comments like “LOL, hahahahahaha and ROTFL”, clearly. More than twelve would be sufficient.

    Seriously, do you never get tired of making a spectacle of yourself?

    Doesn’t it bother you that you are becoming a laughing stock on an increasing number of climate-orientated blogs – and by no means all of them on the sceptical side of the debate?

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  34. Old enough to refrain from childish comments like “LOL, hahahahahaha and ROTFL”, clearly.

    You do realise that the “LOL,hahahahahahahahaa and ROTL” was me quoting Paul?

    More than twelve would be sufficient.

    Yes, that’s what I thought too.

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  35. There are those who declare that some glaciers are male, and some are female. There are those who declare that glacier retreats are a measure of global warming. Seems clear to me that glaciers should now all be given names to help the media draw attention to this one or that, and and to help we poor benighted masses take in more messages, narratives, or whatever. What’s happening to Big Bertha now, we might ask at the supermarket checkout. I can see placards in my mind’s eye, and maybe more.

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  36. I am ‘struggling to understand’ how $400,000 could be spent on this. Like many others here who ‘struggle to understand’, I haven’t yet had the opportunity to read the paper.

    But from the introduction, how could they have managed to spend that amount of money on this?

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  37. Tom, see my comment at 9:06 on Mar 4.
    $400k was not spent on this paper. The lead author has a $400k grant from the NSF ( I think the S stands for science, rather than sociology, stupidity or self-indulgence) over 5 years. Some of that money was used for this. Most of the cash just goes on the salaries. Interestingly, the summary of the research proposal makes no mention of feminism.

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  38. The grant was for a whole series of studies as follows:

    “This project will examine the early development and subsequent evolution of the five main aspects of glaciology: ice dynamics; ice-ocean interactions; landforms and glacial geology; ice as archive of climatic records; and ice as natural resource (water). Specific case studies will be analyzed to illuminate the ways in which science, nature, and society intersect. The resultant book will address (1) the formation of glaciology and theories of ice dynamics; (2) the role of the International Ice Patrol (1913-present) in iceberg analysis and ocean-glacier interactions; (3) the establishment of theories about catastrophic glacial lake megafloods; (4) the Cold War context for ice coring and climatology; and (5) glacier retreat and hydrology.”

    As you can see, the emphasis appears to be on legitimate scientific study of glaciers. No mention of feminism anywhere. My guess is that the militant feminist brigade have gatecrashed this project and misappropriated funds destined for solid scientific research into producing this ‘study’ to advance their agenda of infiltrating and undermining the hard sciences with pseudo-intellectual claptrap. I genuinely believe that they despise science because of its roots in Western, rational, ‘masculinist’ enquiry. Far too many white European men have pioneered scientific enquiry for them to ever be happy with it continuing largely unaltered in its present form, even though its ranks are now populated by many distinguished female academics. Cold, hard, rational, scientific methodology is anathema to these people; they want the world to be soft, squishy, emotional, social. Data needs to reconnect with its feminine side: it never occurs to them that data never had a feminine side, because indeed it never had a masculine side – it just was, and is. They think that because men had the greater part in bringing science into society, society should now turn its back on science unless it radically undergoes a process of ‘feminisation’! Principally this will involve the substitution of a much fairer, more equitable process of enquiry which better serves the needs of women and minorities, rather than the current, very undemocratic system whereby data is subservient to the autocratic demands of Nature!

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  39. Assuming this paper is real, it’s obviously idiotic. And worse than sad that anyone funded it.

    [PM: But see comment from Jaime above, on what the original grant funding was for.]

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  40. JAIME: “Cold, hard, rational, scientific methodology is anathema to these people; they want the world to be soft, squishy, emotional, social.”

    The entirely deranged Sarah Harding epitomises the sort of feminist academic who pioneered this type of foolishness.

    During what is known now as the “Science Wars”, she was part of a debate regarding the value-neutrality of the sciences. This aspect of her work has been criticized by some scientists. Harding referred to Newton’s Principia Mathematica as a “rape manual” in her 1986 book “The Science Question in Feminism”.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sandra_Harding

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  41. Ah yes, doesn’t she just. Never heard of the woman but was prompted to google her.

    “In Objectivity and Diversity, Harding calls for a science that is both more epistemically adequate and socially just, a science that would ask: How are the lives of the most economically and politically vulnerable groups affected by a particular piece of research? Do they have a say in whether and how the research is done? Should empirically reliable systems of indigenous knowledge count as “real science”? Ultimately, Harding argues for a shift from the ideal of a neutral, disinterested science to one that prizes fairness and responsibility.”
    http://www.amazon.com/Objectivity-Diversity-Another-Scientific-Research/dp/022624136X?tag=duckduckgo-ffsb-20

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  42. Pingback: And Then There’s Hypocrisy | The IPCC Report

  43. Ok, so I have now read large swathes of the paper and it is largely pointless, rather than insane. It starts with the history of women in fieldwork and their lack of past involvement or respect. As such it could be women’s trials in any field and glaciology is a needlessly narrow perspective.

    The second issue is that glaciology should use more local knowledge, which is a largely flawed idea because human memory and lifespan make them useless as a metric for serious science. I doubt that scientists ignore anecdotal evidence but it’s the basis of where to start looking for evidence, not cast iron proof.

    Glaciers as a social issue (ice with a personality type of thing) isn’t glaciology, it’s the study of humans. Scientists worth their salt male or female shouldn’t mix their sciences because both will suffer as a consequence (much like this paper).

    Toward the end the paper went very surreal and was pure effluent.

    As for bringing feminism into it… sigh. Flawed it might have been, but feminism was started so that women could be taken seriously and not judged by their sexual organs. This paper does the exact opposite. Ok, women have some different skills to bring to many fields but glaciology isn’t an area that needs gender specific talents. For ATTP, it’s like they want to bring more women’s poetry into astronomy. Quaint but not science. Think how horrified you’d be about that, especially if you were fighting for the same funding.

    All in all it’s the sort of paper that gives research and journals a bad name.

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  44. Pingback: Feministische glaciologie - Climategate.nl

  45. Pingback: Feministische glaciologie | Silvia's Boinnk!!!

  46. Since people have talked about funding: research funding goes to administrative overhead – 30-50%. The rest, as it appears it was in this case, goes for salaries or stipends, divided up over the term of the grant. That’s how the researcher pays for his or her own support. Do the calculation for $400K – it’s peanuts.

    Take the oft-repeated $1 million figure for Willie Soon. Divide the amount over 10 years, subtract the overhead, and what is left? Do you think it would be enough for someone to support a family in Boston with the amount?

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  47. Pingback: Feminist glaciologist responds | Climate Scepticism

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