Race: A Philosophical Introduction / Edition 1

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In Race: A Philosophical Introduction, Paul C. Taylor provides an accessible guide to a well-travelled but still mysterious area of the contemporary social landscape. Blending metaphysics and social philosophy, analytic philosophy and pragmatic philosophy of experience, Taylor outlines the main features and implications of race-thinking, while engaging the ideas of such important figures as Linda Alcoff, K. Anthony Appiah, W.E.B. Du Bois, Howard Winant and Naomi Zack. The result is the first philosophical introduction to the field of race theory and to a non-biological and situational notion of race. The book unfolds in a sequence of five chapters, each devoted to one of the following questions: What is race-thinking? Don't we know better than to talk about race now? Are there any races? What is it like to have a racial identity? And how important, ethically, is colour-blindness? On the way to answering these questions, Race takes up topics like mixed-race identity, white supremacy, the relationship between the race concept and other social identity categories, and the impact of race-thinking on our erotic and romantic lives. Race is suitable for the educated general reader as well as for students and scholars in ethnic studies, philosophy, sociology, and other related fields.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"An exemplary text - the second edition deserves to be widely readand adopted in classrooms."
South African Journal of Philosophy

"Taylor has succeeded at introducing a wide audience to a timelyand rich topic with considerable purchase on the American socialdiscourse he targets."
LSE Review of Books

"What makes the witty and clearly-written Race: A PhilosophicalIntroduction such a valuable book is that Taylor not onlythoroughly dissects the concept of race to show its inner workingsbut also provides a cogent and rational argument for the continuedemployment of race as a category for both describing our presentsocial reality as well as serving to undo the harm inflicted byever-evolving forms of racialism."
Marx and Philosophy

"Paul Taylor may only, as he says, 'gently recommend' the approachhe develops here, but he offers compelling arguments that raise thelevel of discussion on all sorts of race matters. This new editionextends the discussion to more recent topics, such as the demise ofaffirmative action and new work on the metaphysics of race, makingthe book more useful than ever. And it is still the mostentertaining philosophy book I have ever read."
Linda Martin Alcoff, Syracuse University

"Moving fluidly and wittily between high theory and popularculture, Paul Taylor’s book is, quite simply, the bestphilosophical introduction to race I know. I have made it arequired text every time I have taught race, whether at theundergraduate or graduate levels. This welcome new edition updatesthe 2003 original to include Barack Obama’s election,controversies around undocumented immigration, and the ominouspattern of growing securitization –  all shaped by racein a very much non-post-racial world."
Charles Mills, Northwestern University

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780745628837
  • Publisher: Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 12/8/2003
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 216
  • Product dimensions: 6.05 (w) x 9.05 (h) x 0.65 (d)

Meet the Author

Paul C. Taylor is Associate Professor and Acting Chair at Pennsylvania State University.

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Table of Contents


Part I: Theory:.

1. What Race-Thinking Is:.

The Language Of Race.

What We Mean By 'Race': What Do You Mean, 'We'?.

Modern Racialism: Prehistory And Background.

Power, Racial Formation, And Method.


2. Three Challenges To Race-Thinking:.


The Anti-Racist Challenge, Take 1: Isn't Race-Thinking Unethical?.

What Racism Is.

Classical Racialism: History And Background.

Early Modern Racialism.

High Modern, Or Classical, Racialism.

The Concept Of Classical Racialism.

The Challenge Of Human Variation: Isn't Racial Biology False?.

What's Wrong With Race.

The Challenge Of Social Differentiation: Isn't The Race Concept Just In The Way?.





Intersecting Principles: Gender.


3. What Races Are:.


After Classical Racialism.

The U.S. Racial Terrain Today.

Varieties Of Racialism: Four Accounts And Ten Questions.

What Races Are - A Radical Constructionist's Story.

Ten Questions.


Part II: Practice:.

4. Existence, Experience, Elisions:.


Ethical Eliminativism, For And Against; Or, The Anti-Racist Challenge, Take 2.

The Slippery Slope And The Argument From Political Realism.

The Argument From Self-Realization.

Existence, Identity, And Despair.

The Basics.

Despair And Terror.


Micro-Diversity, Part I.

Microdiversity, Part II.

In-Between: Illusions Of Purity And Interstitial Peoples.

Experience, Invisibility, And Embodiment.

The Basics.

Invisibility And The Other Mind-Body Problem.

From The Ontic To The Ontological.


5. The Color Question:.


Color And 'Courting': The Ethics Of Miscegenation.

Colorblindness And Affirmative Action.


A Note On Further Reading.


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