Episode 14: Victim Testimony / November 27, 2020

With Dr Mona Simion

Hosted by Arianna Clark Ruaridh Gilmartin

Edited by Signe Emilie Eriksen

Posted in Main feed Feminism Philosophy of Law

Why do we believe what we are told? When should we believe what we are told? And why is it so often the case that we suspend our belief exactly when others need it the most? Dr Mona Simion – Deputy Director of COGITO (and so much more) – is going to dissect these questions for us and explain to Ruaridh and Arianna why she thinks that, when it comes to cases of sexual allegation, we should (most of the time) believe the victim.

In this episode, Ruaridh and Arianna talk to Mona about her interests in “all things normative”. In particular, her interest in how we should treat the testimonies of the victims of sexual assault. Mona’s argument is an epistemic one. Modest, yet powerful, it asks us to question the adage: “innocent until proven guilty”. They also discuss Mona’s Mentoring Programme, set up within the University of Glasgow with the aim of fostering young female philosophers, and emboldening them to pursue careers in academic philosophy.

01:42 – What does "normative" mean?
02:10 - Unpacking Mona’s big project
02:50 – Victim testimony
11:30 – Reliability of victim testimony
14:20 – Mona’s Mentoring Programme for Women