Feminism and the fundamental right to science

Women's participation in science is a process that goes beyond scientific production. It has benefits for the entire society and contributes to removing the structural obstacles that women face in all areas of life.

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At this time of Multiple crisesAs rising tensions and instability amplify each other, human rights are once again being put on the table. Although the doctrine of human rights has become passe-partout Calling for global justice in a way that is as global as it is fragile, her blueprint can help us understand the crises we are experiencing, and build the keys to addressing them.

Marking International Day of Women and Girls in Science February 11, take care of this day International Women Next March 8th, it's important to remember that Knowledge is rightLike all other human rights, It is necessary to build equal societies and fight discrimination. Highly cited Universal Charter on Human Rights The 1948 law states in its article 27 that “Every person has the right freely to participate in the cultural life of the community, to enjoy the arts, and to share in scientific progress and its benefits.” This right, which Chile and other countries in Latin America strongly defended during the Charter writing processes, has often been ignored and relegated to a secondary level in international spheres, as is often the case with many other economic and social rights. And cultural.

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This right is now more necessary than ever to solve the problems of an age plagued by misinformation Feminism must confront societies where bonds of trust are increasingly broken down and weakened. Already in 1995, astrophysicist and writer Carl Sagan announced this “Science is essential to democracyAlong with him, his famous wife, biologist Lynn Margulis, changed the paradigms of science with the theory of endosymbiosis, which replaced Darwinian thinking of evolution as competition towards a conception of the lifeworld as cooperation. Margulis's contribution is one of many examples of how women's participation in science is a process It goes beyond scientific production, includes benefits for the entire society and contributes to removing the structural obstacles that women face in all areas of life. Margulis is in fact one of the authorities of the feminist and biologist Donna Haraway, who Cyborg statement It has become a major source for feminism in the 21st century. Lynn Margulis's theory of coexistence is a biological and political speculation, revaluing connections and cooperation at the expense of exclusion and competition.

While it seems clear from the concept of human rights that women should be able to participate in scientific activity and receive the benefits of such activity on an equal basis, Gender equality in the scientific field remains a distant scenario. In a fundamental way, in Spain, according to Facts and figures about the Spanish university systemWomen's participation in Positions of power in scientific institutions remain low. While enrollment in academic degrees shows a greater presence of women (56.3%) than men, they represent 43.3% of all teachers and, in contrast, 25.6% of professors. These data clearly symbolize the continued structural discrimination – social, economic and political – that women suffer in the social structure, which in turn is reproduced through the structures of the world of scientific production. Although, at first glance, women's access to university education is equal to men's, however The underrepresentation of women in fields most closely associated with research and knowledge production is both a symptom and a cause of masculine scientific research., Insensitive to gender perspectiveWhere science is reproduced as an exclusive and exclusive activity, in contrast to the human rights agenda. On the other hand, there is still a distinction between scientific disciplines between the so-called social sciences and natural sciences. The latter, with much less participation from women (A 25% In the Spanish state), it is in turn the sciences and methodologies that have greater prestige and social value. Not by chance, The natural sciences are considered “hard sciences”, while the social sciences, which are more feminine, are called the “hard sciences”. “soft sciences”. the Science lawIn fact, Technology and Innovation 2022 recognizes this problem, and aims to respond to the gender inequalities that still exist in the Spanish state by incorporating a gender perspective.

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Access and engagement in scientific activity is fundamental to exploring our communities and nature, with the goal of building more just and equitable spaces. Without gender inclusion and diversity, science ignores the reflexivity and heterogeneity inherent in the search for knowledge, and reproduces schemes of discrimination that transcend the objects of its study. Resolving these cyclical inequalities involves reconsidering and exploring the economic, social and cultural rights agenda, understanding the importance of marginalized rights such as the right to science, and understanding the interconnectedness and relationship between all these rights.

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