Social Theory and Practice 42 (2):258-284 (2016)

Rachel McKinney
Suffolk University
Much recent philosophical work argues that power constrains speech—pornography silences women, testimonial injustice thwarts a speaker’s transmission of knowledge, bias distorts the performative force of subordinated speech. Though the constraints that power places on speech are serious, power also enables some speech. Power doesn’t just keep us from speaking—it also makes us speak. In this paper I explore how power produces, rather than constrains, speech. I discuss a kind of speech I call extracted speech: speech that is unjustly elicited from an agent. I discuss examples of coerced confession, intimidated “consent,” and mandatory self-disclosure as instances of extracted speech, and theorize a bit about what significance this speech has more generally for philosophy of language and political philosophy.
Keywords Applied Philosophy  Contemporary Philosophy  Social and Political Philosophy
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ISBN(s) 0037-802X
DOI 10.5840/soctheorpract201642215
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