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Abudu, Kenneth U. , Imafidon, Elvis, . Epistemic Injustice, Disability, and Queerness in African Cultures
2020, In: Imafidon, E. (ed.) Handbook of African Philosophy of Difference. Cham: Springer, 393-409
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Abstract: Perception, representations, and knowledge claims about disability and queerness vary across societies and cultures. In African cultures negative knowledge claims and representations of disability and queerness create a perception of the disabled and queer that are not only detrimental to such persons in African societies but arguably undermine the work of understanding difference and tolerance in general. These negative claims raise some epistemological questions, such as: how do Africans come to know about disability and how are such knowledge claims validated within African communities? Against this backdrop, this chapter critically examines the epistemology of disability and queerness in African traditions. It shows that the epistemic authoritarianism found in African epistemology leads to an epistemic injustice that contributes immensely to the discrimination against disabled and queer beings as reflected in many cultural practices across the continent of Africa. The chapter argues that knowledge claims about disability and queerness in Africa emerge mainly from neglect, superstition, myth, and, above all, ignorance.

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Dotson, Kristie, , . A Cautionary Tale: On Limiting Epistemic Oppression
2012, Frontiers: A Journal of Women Studies 33 (1):24-47.
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Added by: Clotilde Torregrossa, Contributed by: Corbin Covington

Abstract: In this paper, first and foremost, I aim to issue a caution. Specifically, I caution that when addressing and identifying forms of epistemic oppression one needs to endeavor not to perpetuate epistemic oppression. Epistemic oppression, here, refers to epistemic exclusions afforded positions and communities that produce de? ciencies in social knowledge. An epistemic exclusion, in this analysis, is an infringement on the epistemic agency of knowers that reduces her or his ability to participate in a given epistemic community.2 Epistemic agency will concern the ability to utilize persuasively shared epistemic resources within a given epistemic community in order to participate in knowledge production and, if required, the revision of those same resources.3 A compromise to epistemic agency, when unwarranted, damages not only individual knowers but also the state of social knowledge and shared epistemic resources.

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Dotson, Kristie, , . Conceptualizing Epistemic Oppression
2014, Social Epistemology 28 (2):115-138.
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Added by: Clotilde Torregrossa, Contributed by: Corbin Covington

Abstract: Epistemic oppression refers to persistent epistemic exclusion that hinders one’s contribution to knowledge production. The tendency to shy away from using the term ‘epistemic oppression’ may follow from an assumption that epistemic forms of oppression are generally reducible to social and political forms of oppression. While I agree that many exclusions that compromise one’s ability to contribute to the production of knowledge can be reducible to social and political forms of oppression, there still exists distinctly irreducible forms of epistemic oppression. In this paper, I claim that a major point of distinction between reducible and irreducible epistemic oppression is the major source of difficulty one faces in addressing each kind of oppression, i.e. epistemic power or features of epistemological systems. Distinguishing between reducible and irreducible forms of epistemic oppression can offer a better understanding of what is at stake in deploying the term and when such deployment is apt.

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Dotson, Kristie, , . Tracking Epistemic Violence, Tracking Practices of Silencing
2011, Hypatia 26 (2):236-257.
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Added by: Simon Fokt, Contributed by: Naomi Beecroft, Emily Dyson

Abstract: Too often, identifying practices of silencing is a seemingly impossible exercise. Here I claim that attempting to give a conceptual reading of the epistemic violence present when silencing occurs can help distinguish the different ways members of oppressed groups are silenced with respect to testimony. I offer an account of epistemic violence as the failure, owing to pernicious ignorance, of hearers to meet the vulnerabilities of speakers in linguistic exchanges. Ultimately, I illustrate that by focusing on the ways in which hearers fail to meet speaker dependency in a linguistic exchange, efforts can be made to demarcate the different types of silencing people face when attempting to testify from oppressed positions in society.

Comment: This text provides an alternative framework to epistemic injustice and focuses on the positionality of black women. It encourages thought about (certain kinds of) ignorance as specific harms to others. This would suit an undergraduate class who were looking at race, gender, and/or applied epistemologies.

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Fricker, Miranda, , . Epistemic Injustice: Power and the Ethics of Knowing
2007, Oxford: Oxford University Press.
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Added by: Jie Gao, Contributed by:

Publisher’s Note: In this exploration of new territory between ethics and epistemology, Miranda Fricker argues that there is a distinctively epistemic type of injustice, in which someone is wronged specifically in their capacity as a knower. Justice is one of the oldest and most central themes in philosophy, but in order to reveal the ethical dimension of our epistemic practices the focus must shift to injustice. Fricker adjusts the philosophical lens so that we see through to the negative space that is epistemic injustice. The book explores two different types of epistemic injustice, each driven by a form of prejudice, and from this exploration comes a positive account of two corrective ethical-intellectual virtues. The characterization of these phenomena casts light on many issues, such as social power, prejudice, virtue, and the genealogy of knowledge, and it proposes a virtue epistemological account of testimony. In this ground-breaking book, the entanglements of reason and social power are traced in a new way, to reveal the different forms of epistemic injustice and their place in the broad pattern of social injustice.

Comment: In this book, Fricker names the phenomenon of epistemic injustice, and distinguish two central forms of it, with their corresponding remedies. It touches the central issues in social epistemology and philosophy of gender and race. It is thus an essential reading for relevant courses on those two areas.

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Hrdy, Sarah Blaffer, , . Empathy, Polyandry, and the Myth of the Coy Female
1986, In Feminist Approaches to Science, Ruth Bleier, (ed.), New York: Pergamon.
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Added by: Benny Goldberg, Contributed by:

Introduction: For over three decades, a handful of partially true assumptions were permitted to shape the construction of general evolutionary theories about sexual selection. These theories of sexual selection presupposed the existence of a highly discriminating, exually ‘coy’ female who was courted by sexually undiscriminating males. Work by female primatologists undermined these assumptions.

Comment: This is an essential paper for any courses in standpoint epistemology, feminist philosophy of science, or general philosophy of science.

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Masitera, Erasmus, , . Creating the Other in the Context of Land Redistributions. The Paradox of Decolonization and Common Good
2020, In: Imafidon, E. (ed.) Handbook of African Philosophy of Difference. Cham: Springer, 525-544
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Added by: Björn Freter, Contributed by: Björn Freter

Abstract: In this chapter I argue for land redistribution that promotes common good and decolonisation for all humans. I achieve this by criticising land redistributions that are discriminatory, in that regard I particularise the issue to Zimbabwean land reform of 2000 onwards. I note that the particular land redistribution resulted in marginalisation, exclusion, thingification and disempowerment of certain groups of people based on their race, political, economic and social standing. Opposed to the discriminatory land redistribution, I argue (through the use of philosophical terms and systems) for land redistribution that aims at empowering and promotes well-being, common good and harmony among members of society.

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Mcweeny, Jennifer, , . Liberating Anger, Embodying Knowledge: A Comparative Study of Maria Lugones and Zen Master Hakuin
2010, Hypatia 25 (2):295 – 315.
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Added by: Clotilde Torregrossa, Contributed by: Corbin Covington

Abstract: This paper strengthens the theoretical ground of feminist analyses of anger by explaining how the angers of the oppressed are ways of knowing. Relying on insights created through the juxtaposition of Latina feminism and Zen Buddhism, I argue that these angers are special kinds of embodied perceptions that surface when there is a profound lack of fit between a particular bodily orientation and its framing world of sense. As openings to alternative sensibilities, these angers are transformative, liberatory, and deeply epistemological.

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Medina, José, , . The Epistemology of Resistance: Gender and Racial Oppression, Epistemic Injustice, and Resistant Imaginations
2012, Oxford University Press.
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Added by: Simon Fokt, Contributed by: Ian James Kidd, Corbin Covington

Abstract: 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.

Comment: A complex study in social, virtue, vice, and racial epistemology. A systematic study of gendered and radicalised epistemic injustices. It can support teaching on social, virtue, vice, and racial epistemology, and is best in a systematic study of gendered and radicalised epistemic injustices.

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Spaulding, Shannon, , . Mind Misreading
2016, Philosophical Issues 26 (1): 422-440.
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Added by: Andrea Blomqvist, Contributed by:

Abstract: Most people think of themselves as pretty good at understanding others’ beliefs, desires, emotions, and intentions. Accurate mindreading is an impressive cognitive feat, and for this reason the philosophical literature on mindreading has focused exclusively on explaining such successes. However, as it turns out, we regularly make mindreading mistakes. Understanding when and how mind misreading occurs is crucial for a complete account of mindreading. In this paper, I examine the conditions under which mind misreading occurs. I argue that these patterns of mind misreading shed light on the limits of mindreading, reveal new perspectives on how mindreading works, and have implications for social epistemology.

Comment: Unlike most papers in the mindreading debate, this paper focuses on the cases in which we fail to mindread. It relates these cases to self-awareness, and suggests how this could be explored to shed light on peer disagreement and epistemic injustice. This paper would fit in well in a social cognition syllabus.

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Tanesini, Alessandra, , . “Calm down, dear”: intellectual arrogance, silencing and ignorance
2016, Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 90(1): 71-92.
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Added by: Rie Izuka, Contributed by:

Abstract: In this paper I provide an account of two forms of intellectual arrogance which cause the epistemic practices of conversational turn-taking and assertion to malfunction. I detail some of the ethical and epistemic harms generated by intellectual arrogance, and explain its role in fostering the intellectual vices of timidity and servility in other agents. Finally, I show that arrogance produces ignorance by silencing others (both preventing them from speaking and causing their assertions to misfire) and by fostering self-delusion in the arrogant themselves.

Comment: This article examines intellectual vices of arrogance, and its counterpart: servility. The author explains how the former vice develops the latter: culpably breaking of the norms of turn-taking of conversation locutionarily silences other conversants, and such disrespectful behavior would lead conversants to fall into a vice of intellectual servility.

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Vince, Rosa, , . Testimonial Smothering and Pornography
2018, Feminist Philosophy Quarterly 4(3)
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Added by: Andrea Blomqvist, Contributed by: Rosa Vince

Abstract: This paper defends the claim that there are two previously underexplored ways in which pornography silences women. These ways that pornography silences are (1) the smothering of refusal and (2) the smothering of sexual assault reports, and they can be explained in part through Kristie Dotson’s account of “testimonial smothering.” Unlike the work of other writers in the pornography as silencing literature, my discussion of silenced refusal of sex deals with the cases where women have said yes to sex but would have said no if they had felt that they could have. I show that this, and cases where women do not report sexual assault, count as testimonial smothering through identifying rape myths as a species of “pernicious ignorance.” I make the connection to pornography in presenting evidence that pornography contributes to acceptance of rape myths. This takes us to my general conclusion: Dotson’s account of testimonial smothering gives us a way in which pornography contributes to the silencing of women, by silencing their refusal of sex and their reports of sexual assault.

Comment: This paper can be used as a stand-alone argument for how some pornography might silence women, or can be viewed as part of the literature on silencing and pornography; as an alternative strategy to Rae Langton’s approach, using Kristie Dotson’s work instead of J L Austin’s. It can also be used as an example of how Kristie Dotson’s work on Testimonial Injustice has broad application.

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