Women are Not The Problem, They are the Solution #sjbc

Welcome to the April Social Justice Book Club. This week we will be discussing Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide by Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn.

Half The Sky focuses us on how helping women around the world can have a striking impact on human well-being. The video above is from a documentary inspired by the book and will give you a taste for what we will be discussing this week (we will have other videos throughout the week).

Whether you have read Half the Sky, read part of it, scene the documentary…or if you are just interested in these topics…you will want to check in with us here throughout the week.

Here is our agenda for the week:

Monday: We will be looking at the Introduction, Chapter One and Chapter Two.

Tuesday: We will be looking at Chapter Three, Chapter Four, and Chapter Five.

Wednesday: We will be looking at Chapter Six, Chapter Seven, and Chapter Eight.

Thursday: We will be looking at Chapter Nine, Chapter Ten, and Chapter Eleven.

Friday: We will be looking at Chapter Twelve, Chapter Thirteen, and Chapter Fourteen.

Saturday and beyond: What should we do? We will discuss how we can make a difference. Now, this is something we will be discussing all week long.

Watch for posts with the hashtag #sjbc.

During the latter part of this week, we will have posts from Andrea Radke-Moss, a historian at BYU-Idaho, and Lela Graham, the executive director of Independence Rock Group: Center for Faith, Ethics, and Social Justice.

Please join us on any and all of the Social Justice Book Club posts. We want to hear your comments, thoughts, questions, and experiences. Watch for posts with the hashtag #sjbc

The Social Justice Book Club is a project of Independence Rock Group: Center for Faith, Ethics, and Social Justice. Please consider supporting the Social Justice Book Club and our other projects.

A Message from our Executive Director

We are excited to let our friends and supporters know about the changes to Independence Rock Group. While the essence of the IRG remains, roles have changed to build on our strengths and reflect our new location.

I have taken on the role of Executive Director and Chris Henrichsen is the Faith and Social Justice Director. Kevin Caudill will continue his role as Operations Director.  Independence Rock Group is now based in Charlottesville, Virginia where can engage with an active community and fulfill our mission.

The Independence Rock Group elevates issues of faith, ethics, and social justice using the arts as a form of community engagement. Music, art, film, and literature inspire; fostering connections between local and national voices. Channeling inspiration into action that benefits our community is the mission of the Independence Rock Group.

In March we hosted a lively panel discussion, “Women in Public Life”. A diverse group of women discussed their current positions and how their journey and their unique experiences helped them get there.

Our Social Justice Book Club begins April the 14th. The first selection is Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide by Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn.  We will have a week long virtual discussion about the book, and invite everyone to join in the discussion. Find details here.

We will screen the Oscar-nominated documentary about ACT UP, “How to Survive a Plague”, on May 9 at Random Row Books, 315 W. Main St. Charlottesville.

We are grateful for the support that we have already received and hope you will continue your support as a member.

If you would like to help us educate and bring awareness to issues of faith, ethics, and social justice in our community, please show your faith and send us a donation. You will become a member of a growing, vital and much needed nonprofit that is educating and drawing interest right now.

Warmest Regards,

Lela Graham

Executive Director

Levels and Benefits of Membership

  • $25 Weekly Member’s Update
  • $50 Weekly Member’s Update and a subscription to the Independence Rock Review
  • $100 Weekly Member’s Update, subscription to the Independence Rock Review, and special invitation to IRG events
  • $250 All of the above, special access to featured IRG speakers and guests

Social Justice and the Ethic of Care

Over at Approaching Justice this week, I am posting about the feminist ethic of care.

My first post “Feminism and the Social Contract” deals with the rather tricky concept of human nature found in the influential works of Thomas Hobbes, John Locke and other.

“…despite some of the strengths in these respective theories, the social contract approach itself makes it difficult to accept the weaknesses which they contain. All of these theories place a heavy emphasis on their description of human nature and it is in their description of human nature that we often find problems. Can any description of human nature that fails to take into account the fact that women are fully human be used as the basis of a moral and political theory? I do not think so, particularly when we consider that these thinkers have given such a central significance to their account of human nature. For this reason, we have to look elsewhere to find the best conception of political theory.”

My second post “Care and the Liberal Theory of Justice” looks at the theory of social justice developed by the 20th Century philosopher John Rawls.

“Like Rawls, Joan Tronto heavily favors a more social democratic society where the state plays a more active role in achieving social justice. This more egalitarian society cannot be realized without care. This is a lesson that Rawlsians, like myself, need to acknowledge and emphasize within our work and advocacy. That many critics do not find care in Rawls’ theory is partially because it is not emphasized. In light of the political ethic of care, this is something which any egalitarian theory of justice cannot do.”

On Thursday, I will be posting about the ethic of care and the idea of religious obedience. On Friday, I will be looking at the issue of dependency in the work of Rawls.