Groups and Oppression

Hypatia 31 (3):520-536 (2016)
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Abstract

Oppression is a form of injustice that occurs when one social group is subordinated while another is privileged, and oppression is maintained by a variety of different mechanisms including social norms, stereotypes, and institutional rules. A key feature of oppression is that it is perpetrated by and affects social groups. In this article I show that because of the central role that groups play in theories of oppression, those theories face significant, and heretofore mostly unrecognized, metaphysical problems. I then identify resources from analytic metaphysics that can be used to address these problems. I show that, although we should not be pessimistic about the prospects for a viable theory of oppression, it will take serious metaphysical work to develop a plausible ontology of oppression, and existing theories have for the most part failed to respond to this challenge

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Elanor Taylor
Johns Hopkins University

Citations of this work

The metaphysics of intersectionality.Sara Bernstein - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 177 (2):321-335.
Substantive Social Metaphysics.Elanor Taylor - 2023 - Philosophers' Imprint 23:1-18.

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References found in this work

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Emergence and Fundamentality.Elizabeth Barnes - 2012 - Mind 121 (484):873-901.
Emergence: Core ideas and issues.Jaegwon Kim - 2006 - Synthese 151 (3):547-559.
Exclusion again.Karen Bennett - 2008 - In Jakob Hohwy & Jesper Kallestrup (eds.), Being Reduced: New Essays on Reduction, Explanation, and Causation. Oxford University Press. pp. 280--307.
Overdetermination Underdetermined.Sara Bernstein - 2016 - Erkenntnis 81 (1):17-40.

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