LINDA ALCOFF VISIBLE IDENTITIES PDF

In the heated debates over identity politics, few theorists have looked carefully at the conceptualizations of identity assumed by all sides. Drawing on both philosophical sources as well as theories and empirical studies in the social sciences, this book makes a strong case that identities are not like special interests, nor are they doomed to oppositional politics, nor do they inevitably lead to conformism, essentialism, or reductive approaches to judging others. Identities are historical formations and their political implications are open to interpretation. But identities such as race and But identities such as race and gender also have a powerful visual and material aspect that eliminativists and social constructionists often underestimate. This book analyses the political and philosophical worries about identity and argues that these worries are neither supported by the empirical data nor grounded in realistic understandings of what identities are.

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In the heated debates over identity politics, few theorists have looked carefully at the conceptualizations of identity assumed by all sides. Drawing on both philosophical sources as well as theories and empirical studies in the social sciences, this book makes a strong case that identities are not like special interests, nor are they doomed to oppositional politics, nor do they inevitably lead to conformism, essentialism, or reductive approaches to judging others. Identities are historical formations and their political implications are open to interpretation.

But identities such as race and But identities such as race and gender also have a powerful visual and material aspect that eliminativists and social constructionists often underestimate. This book analyses the political and philosophical worries about identity and argues that these worries are neither supported by the empirical data nor grounded in realistic understandings of what identities are. The book develops a more realistic characterization of identity in general through combining phenomenological approaches to embodiment with hermeneutic concepts of the interpretive horizon.

Besides addressing the general contours of social identity, the book develops an account of the material infrastructure of gendered identity, compares and contrasts gender identities with racialized ones, and explores the experiential aspects of racial subjectivity for both whites and non-whites. In several chapters the book looks specifically at Latino identity as well, including its relationship to concepts of race, the specific forms of anti-Latino racism, and the politics of mestizo or hybrid identity.

Keywords: identity , conformism , essentialism , reductive approaches , race , gender , Latino identiy , racism , mestizo. Forgot password? Don't have an account? All Rights Reserved. OSO version 0. University Press Scholarship Online. Sign in. Not registered? Sign up. Publications Pages Publications Pages. Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. More In the heated debates over identity politics, few theorists have looked carefully at the conceptualizations of identity assumed by all sides.

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Library Card Please enter your library card number. View: no detail some detail full detail. Two Gender Identity and Gender Differences. End Matter Bibliography Index.

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Visible Identities: Race, Gender, and the Self

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Visible Identities

The idea of visibility has a unifying role in Alcoff's metaphysical and epistemological account of those social identities. Likewise, visible is what social identities should be in Alcoff's vision of political life. Visible identities, according to Alcoff, are a resource in a pluralistic democracy, and are not to be eschewed for a simple American identity beyond hyphens, race, ethnicity, and gender difference. That political point is the fundamental point of this book, and it is delivered through Alcoff's metaphysical analysis of race, ethnicity, and gender. Alcoff's attempt to make a political argument through metaphysical analysis immediately calls to mind the distinction between those two areas of inquiry and their presumed separateness. Richard Rorty captured this distinction by framing it in terms of the two questions "what are we? The "who are we?

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2006.06.22

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