Authors
Alex Madva
California State Polytechnic University, Pomona
Abstract
This essay responds to the criticism that contemporary efforts to redress discrimination and inequality are overly individualistic. Critics of individualism emphasize that these systemic social ills stem not from the prejudice, irrationality, or selfishness of individuals, but from underlying structural-institutional forces. They are skeptical, therefore, of attempts to change individuals’ attitudes while leaving structural problems intact. I argue that the insistence on prioritizing structural over individual change is problematic and misleading. My view is not that we should instead prioritize individual change, but that individual changes are integral to the success of structural changes. These theorists urge a redirection of attention, claiming that we should think less about the individual and more about the social. What they should urge instead is that we think differently about the individual, and thereby think differently about the social.
Keywords Individualism  Stereotypes  Prejudice  Discrimination  Implicit Bias  Social Change  Prejudice Reduction  Social Structure  Structural Racism
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DOI 10.3998/ergo.12405314.0003.027
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References found in this work BETA

What is a (Social) Structural Explanation?Sally Haslanger - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (1):113-130.
The Imperative of Integration.Elizabeth Anderson - 2010 - Princeton University Press.
A Cautionary Tale: On Limiting Epistemic Oppression.Kristie Dotson - 2012 - Frontiers: A Journal of Women Studies 33 (1):24-47.

View all 19 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

The Quantified Relationship.John Danaher, Sven Nyholm & Brian D. Earp - 2018 - American Journal of Bioethics 18 (2):3-19.
Responsibility for Implicit Bias.Jules Holroyd - 2017 - Philosophy Compass 12 (3).
The Structure of Bias.Gabbrielle M. Johnson - forthcoming - Mind:fzaa011.
Bias, Structure, and Injustice: A Reply to Haslanger.Robin Zheng - 2018 - Feminist Philosophy Quarterly 4 (1):1-30.

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