I begin by examining three factors which enable the term âpolitical correctnessâ (hereafter PC) itself to feed into the hands of its opponents: namely, the trivialization of the actual issues which are attributed to PC, the villainization of those involved in the PC movement, and the conferring of a sense of legitimacy on the opposition movement.
Debates about politicalcorrectness often proceed as if proponents see nothing to fear in erecting norms that inhibit expression on the one side, and opponents see nothing but misguided efforts to silence political enemies on the other.1 Both views are mistaken. Politicalcorrectness, as I argue, is an important attempt to advance the legitimate interests of certain groups in the public sphere. However, this type of norm comes with costs that mustn’t be neglected–sometimes in the (...) form of conflict with other values we hold dear, but often by creating an internal schism that threatens us with collective irrationality. Politicalcorrectness thus sets up dilemmas I wish to set out (but not, alas, resolve). The cliché is that politicalcorrectness tramples on rights to free-speech, as if the potential loss were merely expressive; the real issue is that in filtering public discourse, politicalcorrectness may defeat our own substantive aims. (shrink)
This paper addresses the issue of politicalcorrectness from a Freirean point of view. An identification of the range of areas to which the label ‘politicalcorrectness’ has been applied reveals a confusingly multifaceted term. The author concentrates on the key characteristics of intolerance, conformity, the impeding of questioning and criticism, the stifling of debate, and the denial of alternatives. Thus defined, ‘politicalcorrectness’ has no place in Freirean education.
As the composition of university campuses becomes more diverse, campus journalists must become better at making decisions that avoid needlessly offending members of various ethnic and cultural groups. This examination explores the role of the campus media and includes incidents that illustrate campus journalists' problems with decision making when confronted with material regarding their diverse audiences. It explores the politicalcorrectness movement on campuses, notes the advantage of ethical reasoning, offers a philosophical foundation for decision making based on (...) respect, and proposes a Model of Respect. This model should enable novice journalists to better self-regulate content, precluding the need for campus administrators and judicial bodies to establish regulations and laws that "force" sensitivity into campus speech and newspapers. (shrink)
Two prominent philosophers here engage in a forthright debate over some of the centrally disputed topics in the politicalcorrectness controversy now taking place on college campuses across the nation, including feminism, campus speech codes, the western canon, and the nature of truth. Friedman and Narveson conclude the volume with direct replies to each other's positions.
Many Western intellectuals, especially those in humanities and socialsciences, think that it can be easily shown that the persistent and massive opposition to same-sex marriage is rationally indefensible and that it is merely a result of prejudice or religious fanaticism. But a more detailed analysis of some of these widely accepted arguments against the conservative position reveals that these arguments are in fact based on logical fallacies and serious distortions of conservative criticisms of homosexual marriage. It is concluded that philosophers (...) ought to resist the pressure of politicalcorrectness and that they should approach the debate with a more open mind than before.Mnogi zapadni intelektualci, posebno oni u humanističkim i društvenimznanostima, smatraju da je lako pokazati kako je kontinuirano i masovno protivljenje homoseksualnom braku racionalno neodrživo te da je ono puki rezultat predrasude ili vjerskog fanatizma. Međutim, pažljivija analiza nekih od tih naširoko prihvaćenih argumenata protiv konzervativnog stajališta otkriva da su ti argumenti zapravo zasnovani na logičkim pogreškama i na ozbiljnom iskrivljavanju konzervativne kritike homoseksualnog braka. Zaključak je da bi se filozofi trebali oduprijeti pritisku političke korektnosti i da bi trebali pristupiti ovoj raspravi otvorenijeg duha nego do sada. (shrink)
There is a current fashion among some prominent Japanologists to brand Kyoto School philosophers as mere fascist or imperialist ideologues. This essay examines these charges, and criticizes the critics, endeavoring thereby to encourage a more responsible evaluation of the relationship between philosophical and political discourse.
Latin America has often been represented by images of pre-Columbian artifacts and artwork on book covers and in other printed materials produced by Latin American studies. This article tries to show that there are strong connections between this type of representation and the semantics of Latin America both in everyday English language and in the discourses of the social sciences. First, the author reviews the history of the concept of Latin America in everyday English language, showing how it has been (...) defined as the opposite of a glorified collective self-image of America, in cultural, temporal, and racial terms. Next, chief approaches of Latin American studies are examined, focusing on how social scientific discourses have defined Latin America. Before returning to the topic of pre-Columbian representation, the covers of the best-selling present-day textbooks are surveyed to show how these pictorial representations reproduce the cultural and temporal perceptions of otherness already present in the texts, plus a racial perception that is mostly absent in them. The author argues that the pre-Columbian representation reproduces the three aspects of Latin America’s othering in a powerful and synthetic way. Last, the results of the present analysis are evaluated in the light of some contributions to postcolonial theory, visual culture studies and picture theory. (shrink)
A set of routine academic controversies has recently been fanned into a cause célèbre. I call the controversies 'routine' because they concern the design of curricula and syllabi, the regulation of campus life, and the recruitment of faculty and students. These are important but ordinary affairs for a college or university. They call for choices that arise from fundamental convictions on the purpose of education, the nature of knowledge, the firmness of standards, the value of community, and the mission of (...) the institution. So dealing with these routine affairs is routinely attended with controversy. What is new is that the public is watching closely as academics thrash through these controversies nowadays. At least some journalists and politicians are watching closely and talking loudly about what they see. These conflicts would be what they ought to be, occasions for self-examination and growth, if they were not absolutized by observers who have raised the stakes by raising their voices and simplifying the issues. (shrink)