Journal of Applied Philosophy 10:1-29 (2022)
AbstractIn this paper, I argue that hate speech expresses hate, and answer some objections to expressivist views. First, I briefly comment on some limitations of pragmatic accounts of harmful speech. I then present an expressive-normative view of derogatory discourse according to which it is expressive of an affective state by presupposing it. A linguistic act expressive of an affective state inherits the normativity that is constitutive of that state, as directed to its intentional object. If the act is successful, it updates the conversational context with the normative appraisal conditions of the affective state presupposed. I argue that this model can be applied to hate speech. I rely on current research on the psychology of hate to identify the appraisal conditions, action tendencies, and motivational goals characteristic of hate. The account supplements other pragmatic accounts of hate speech.
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