Chapter

What Are We Talking About?

Sally Haslanger

in Resisting Reality

Published in print October 2012 | ISBN: 9780199892631
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780199980055 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199892631.003.0013
What Are We Talking About?

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Theorists “analyzing” the concepts of race and gender disagree over whether the terms refer to natural kinds, social kinds, or nothing at all. The question arises what we mean by the terms, and it is usually assumed that ordinary intuitions of native speakers are definitive. The chapter argues that contemporary semantic externalism can usefully combine with insights from Foucauldian genealogy to challenge mainstream methods of analysis and lend credibility to social constructionist projects.

Keywords: philosophical analysis; conceptual genealogy; concepts; method; intuitions; semantic externalism; social construction; feminism

Chapter.  8088 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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