[Book review] the racial contract [Book Review]

Social Theory and Practice 25 (1):155-160 (1997)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

White supremacy is the unnamed political system that has made the modern world what it is today. You will not find this term in introductory, or even advanced, texts in political theory. A standard undergraduate philosophy course will start off with plato and Aristotle, perhaps say something about Augustine, Aquinas, and Machiavelli, move on to Hobbes, Locke, Mill, and Marx, and then wind up with Rawls and Nozick. It will introduce you to notions of aristocracy, democracy, absolutism, liberalism, representative government, socialism, welfare capitalism, andlibertarianism. But though it covers more than two thousand years of Western political thought and runs the ostensible gamut of political systems, there will be no mention of the basic political system that has shaped the world for the past several hundred years. And this omission is not accidental. Rather, it reflects the fact that standard textbooks and courses have for the most part been written and designed by whites, who take their racial privilege so much for granted that they do not even see it as political, as a form of domination. Ironically, the most important political system of recent global history-the system of domination by which white people have historically ruled over and, in certain important ways, continue to rule over nonwhite people-is not seen as a political system at all. It is just taken for granted; it is the background against which other systems, which we are to see as political are highlighted. This book is an attempt to redirect your vision, to make you see what, in a sense, has been there all along.

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 91,139

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

The prison contract and abolition democracy.Eduardo Mendieta - 2007 - Radical Philosophy Today 5:209-217.
Strategic Ignorance.Allison Bailey - 2007 - In Shannon Sullivan & Nancy Tuana (eds.), Race and Epistemologies of Ignorance. State Univ of New York Pr. pp. 77--94.
Hobbes and the social contract tradition.Jean Hampton - 1986 - New York: Cambridge University Press.
Race, ideology, and ideal theory.James Boettcher - 2009 - Metaphilosophy 40 (2):237-259.
Locke’s Political Society.Michael Davis - 2014 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 11 (2):209-231.

Analytics

Added to PP
2014-03-28

Downloads
343 (#55,507)

6 months
22 (#109,543)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Charles Mills
Last affiliation: CUNY Graduate Center

Citations of this work

The wrongs of racist beliefs.Rima Basu - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 176 (9):2497-2515.
Conceptualizing Epistemic Oppression.Kristie Dotson - 2014 - Social Epistemology 28 (2):115-138.
Oppressive Things.Shen-yi Liao & Bryce Huebner - 2020 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 103 (1):92-113.

View all 526 citations / Add more citations

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references