A Theory of Race by Joshua Glasgow

By Joshua Glasgow

Social commentators have lengthy requested no matter if racial different types may be conserved or eradicated from our practices, discourse, associations, and maybe even inner most ideas. In A thought of Race,В Joshua Glasgow argues that this set of decisions unnecessarily offers us with too few options.

Using either conventional philosophical instruments and up to date mental study to enquire people understandings of race, Glasgow argues that, as normally conceived, race is an phantasm. in spite of the fact that, our urgent have to communicate to and make experience of social existence calls for that we hire anything like racial discourse. those competing pressures, Glasgow keeps, eventually require us to forestall conceptualizing race as anything organic, and in its place comprehend it as a completely social phenomenon.

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If Racial Twin Americans were to say (~H2) that members of a given race are not linked by common ancestry, and are instead linked only by physical appearance, my intuition, at any rate, is that we should still translate our ‘race’ into their race. Imagine, for instance, that tomorrow God creates a world exactly like ours, such that the only difference is that the people in it— our doppelgangers—and everything else, were created from scratch. Should we say that those people—the people who look exactly like us in twin Africa, Asia, Europe, and so on—constitute races any less than we do, just because the members of each apparently racial population have no distinctive ancestries?

Rather, he spends most of his time articulating the ordinary concept of race, and clarifying what it does and does not say. Now this contrast between articulation and argumentation is not meant as some sort of underhanded criticism. On the contrary, I think Hardimon’s articulation of the thin concept of race has done us a great service, for (unlike those who simply assert their analyses and move on) he has given us an extended analysis that carries significant intuitive force. And he is quite up front that this is exactly what he hopes to accomplish, namely to 1 2 Here Smedley and Smedley and Hirschfeld collapse the meaning of ‘race’ with ordinary conceptions of, and beliefs about, race.

I’ll return to examining how my armchair analysis comports with ordinary folk intuitions about race in the next chapter. The current task, however, is to argue that armchair-generated data, while useful, are most compelling when fortified by systematically gathered empirical data on ordinary racial discourse. If you already find this kind of claim agreeable, you could jump to Chapter 4 without missing a beat. If you stick around, however, we’ll see here that many don’t already accept it and that there are some reasons for those detractors to reconsider.

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