This book explores the epistemic side of oppression, focusing on racial and sexual oppression and their interconnections. It elucidates how social insensitivities and imposed silences prevent members of different groups from interacting epistemically in fruitful ways--from listening to each other, learning from each other, and mutually enriching each other's perspectives. Medina's epistemology of resistance offers a contextualist theory of our complicity with epistemic injustices and a social connection model of shared responsibility for improving epistemic conditions of participation in social practices. Through the articulation of a new interactionism and polyphonic contextualism, the book develops a sustained argument about the role of the imagination in mediating social perceptions and interactions. It concludes that only through the cultivation of practices of resistance can we develop a social imagination that can help us become sensitive to the suffering of excluded and stigmatized subjects. Drawing on Feminist Standpoint Theory and Critical Race Theory, this book makes contributions to social epistemology and to recent discussions of testimonial and hermeneutical injustice, epistemic responsibility, counter-performativity, and solidarity in the fight against racism and sexism.
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José Medina is Walter Dill Scott Professor of Philosophy at Northwestern University. He works primarily in Gender & Race Theory, Philosophy of Language, and Social Epistemology. His writings on language and identity have focused on gender, sexuality, race, and ethnicity. Medina's books include Speaking from Elsewhere (SUNY Press, 2006) and Language (Continuum, 2005).
"José Medina has written an original book which masterfully combines continental
and American traditions and which addresses important topics in contemporary social
and political philosophy, showing why we should pay more attention to the epistemic
dimension of our everyday interactions."--Roberto Frega, European Journal of Pragmatism and American Philosophy
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