David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Philosophers' Imprint 12 (3) (2012)
Marguerite Clark as Topsy in Uncle Tom’s Cabin (1918). Charlton Heston as Ramon Miguel Vargas in Touch of Evil (1958). Mizuo Peck as Sacagawea in Night at the Museum (2006). From the early days of cinema to its classic-era through to the contemporary Hollywood age, the history of cinema is replete with films in which the racial (or ethnic) background of a principal character does not match the background of the actor or actress portraying that character. I call this actor-character race-mismatching. In this paper, I mainly explore whether a coherent and plausible account can be given of race-matching in terms of purely aesthetic considerations, i.e., an account that absent moral considerations can nevertheless coherently and productively answer the following questions: can race-mismatching itself ever be an aesthetic defect of a film, and if so, under what conditions can race-mismatching be such an aesthetic defect. I claim that once we have in place a precise account of the nature of race-matching, it becomes clear that films for which race-mismatching appears to constitute an aesthetic defect are actually films with which properly engaging requires audiences to satisfy inconsistent epistemic conditions. In such cases, I claim, race mismatching constitutes an aesthetic defect for the film-fiction because—in virtue of the inconsistency underwritten by the race-mismatching—that film-fiction undermines the very uptake it prescribes. I then argue that if what’s defective about race-mismatching aesthetically is predicated on something being defective about race-mismatching epistemically, then if there is nothing in principle defective about race-mismatching epistemically, then so too for mismatching aesthetically (and so too for mismatching morally). From this I conclude that reasons stemming only from race-matching/mismatching itself lack the normative force sufficient to warrant the claim that film-fictions ought not race-mismatch.
|Keywords||Fiction Race Film|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Christy Mag Uidhir (2012). The Aesthetics of Actor-Character Race Matching in Film Fictions. Philosophers' Imprint 12 (3).
Velazco Y. Trianosky (forthcoming). Savages, Wild Men, and Monstrous Races: The Social Construction of Race in the Early Modern Era. In Peggy Zeglin Brand (ed.), Beauty Revisited. Indiana University Press.
Ron Mallon (2004). Passing, Traveling and Reality: Social Constructionism and the Metaphysics of Race. Noûs 38 (4):644–673.
M. O. Hardimon (2013). Race Concepts in Medicine. Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 38 (1):6-31.
Michael Root (2003). The Use of Race in Medicine as a Proxy for Genetic Differences. Philosophy of Science 70 (5):1173-1183.
Paul C. Taylor (2004). Race: A Philosophical Introduction. Distributed in the Usa by Blackwell Pub..
Joshua Glasgow (2008). On the Methodology of the Race Debate: Conceptual Analysis and Racial Discourse. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 76 (2):333–358.
Alexandre Marcellesi (2013). Is Race a Cause? Philosophy of Science 80 (5):650-659.
Edouard Machery (2009). Racism Against Jorge Garcia's Moral and Psychological Monism. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 39 (1):41-62.
Lawrence Blum (2010). Racialized Groups. The Monist 93 (2):298-320.
Ron Sundstrom (2002). Race as a Human Kind. Philosophy and Social Criticism 28 (1):91-115.
Added to index2012-02-09
Total downloads16 ( #120,206 of 1,692,491 )
Recent downloads (6 months)2 ( #111,548 of 1,692,491 )
How can I increase my downloads?