Chapter

Language, Politics, and “The Folk”

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/9780199892631.003.0016
Language, Politics, and “The Folk”

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Much of the contemporary discussion of race employs a “semantic strategy” according to which one first determines the ordinary meaning of “race,” and then inquires whether there is anything in the world corresponding to that meaning (see Glasgow 2009, 12). Although some inquire into the meaning of “race” a priori and others empirically, the strategy seems to assume an internalist approach to meaning. The chapter favors an externalist approach to meaning. This chapter explains why, while also exploring how the “jazz model of meaning” (suggested by (Schroeter and Schroeter 2009; Schroeter and Bigelow 2009)) might be particularly useful for theorizing race and other social categories.

Keywords: race; race eliminativism; race constructionism; social construction; semantics; meaning; concepts; conceptual analysis; methodology; feminism; anti-racism; critique; jazz model of meaning; externalism

Chapter.  7707 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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