David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Noûs 38 (4):644–673 (2004)
Among race theorists, the view that race is a social construction is widespread. While the term ‘ social construction’ is sometimes intended to mean merely that race does not constitute a robust, biological natural kind, it often labels the stronger position that race is real, but not a biological kind. For example, Charles Mills writes that, ‘‘the task of those working on race is to put race in quotes, ‘race’, while still insisting that nevertheless, it exists ’’. It is to ‘‘make a plausible social ontology neither essentialist, innate, nor transhistorical, but real enough for all that’’. Racial constructionism, thus conceived, is a metaphysical position that contrasts both with the view that race is an important biological kind and with the more recent claim that race does not exist. The desire for a constructionist metaphysics of race emerges against the background of a cluster of normative disputes, including
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References found in this work BETA
Jerry A. Fodor (1998). Concepts: Where Cognitive Science Went Wrong. Oxford University Press.
Ian Hacking (1999). The Social Construction of What? Harvard University Press.
Paul E. Griffiths (1997). What Emotions Really Are: The Problem of Psychological Categories. University of Chicago Press.
Citations of this work BETA
Ásta Sveinsdóttir (2015). Social Construction. Philosophy Compass 10 (12):884-892.
Daniel Kelly & Erica Roedder (2008). Racial Cognition and the Ethics of Implicit Bias. Philosophy Compass 3 (3):522–540.
Sally Anne Haslanger (2005). What Are We Talking About? The Semantics and Politics of Social Kinds. Hypatia 20 (4):10-26.
Ron Mallon (2007). A Field Guide to Social Construction. Philosophy Compass 2 (1):93–108.
Ron Mallon (2013). Was Race Thinking Invented in the Modern West? Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 44 (1):77-88.
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