Cultural Appropriation Without Cultural Essentialism?

Social Theory and Practice 42 (2):343-366 (2016)
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Abstract

Is there something morally wrong with cultural appropriation in the arts? I argue that the little philosophical work on this topic has been overly dismissive of moral objections to cultural appropriation. Nevertheless, I argue that philosophers working on epistemic injustice have developed powerful conceptual tools that can aid in our understanding of objections that have been levied by other scholars and artists. I then consider the relationship between these objections and the harms of cultural essentialism. I argue that focusing on the systematic nature of appropriative harms may allow us to sidestep the problem of essentialism, but not without cost.

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Author's Profile

Erich Hatala Matthes
Wellesley College

Citations of this work

Cultural appropriation and oppression.Erich Matthes - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (4):1003-1013.
Cultural appropriation and the intimacy of groups.C. Thi Nguyen & Matthew Strohl - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (4):981-1002.
Repatriation and the Radical Redistribution of Art.Erich Hatala Matthes - 2017 - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 4:931-953.
The Ethics of Historic Preservation.Erich Hatala Matthes - 2016 - Philosophy Compass 11 (12):786-794.
The Ethics of Cultural Heritage.Erich Hatala Matthes - 2018 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

View all 17 citations / Add more citations

References found in this work

Oppressive speech.Mary Kate McGowan - 2009 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 87 (3):389 – 407.
Silencing speech.Ishani Maitra - 2009 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 39 (2):pp. 309-338.
Race, Culture, Identity: Misunderstood Connections.Kwame Anthony Appiah - 1996 - The Tanner Lectures on Human Values 17:51-136.
Essentialism and anti-essentialism in feminist philosophy.Alison Stone - 2004 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 1 (2):135-153.

View all 21 references / Add more references