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John Harfouch
University of Alabama, Huntsville
  1.  28
    Does Leibniz Have Any Place in a History of Racism?John Harfouch - 2017 - Philosophy Today 61 (3):737-755.
    I claim that a genealogy of the philological racism known as ‘orientalism’ should include Leibniz as a founding figure. This argument is framed and motivated by recent publications that seek to exclude Leibniz from the history of race and racism by arguing that he insists on a linguistic, rather than ‘racial,’ schematic of human diversity. A survey of nineteenth-century race theory reveals that this distinction is not only specious, but these recent defenses only further implicate Leibniz in the linguistic tradition (...)
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  2.  7
    'Beyond That Which the Victim Suffers in Death Alone': Pain, Orientalism, and Non-Violence at Guantanamo Bay.John Harfouch - forthcoming - Brill.
    Abstract: I argue that Orientalism continues to construct Arabs as subjects that cannot suffer violence, particularly the violence of torture. Beginning with Edward Said’s observation that Orientalists constructed ‘Arabs’ in the nineteenth -century as inorganic, metallic, and mineralized beings, I trace these themes through various sites in and around Guantanamo Bay. One finds the tropes of Orientalism in the Bybee memo as well as in the diary of Mohamedou Ould Slahi. Through these three distinct but related moments, one finds that (...)
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  3.  17
    Symposium on Another Mind-Body Problem.John Harfouch - 2020 - Syndicate.
    John Harfouch’s new book, Another Mind-Body Problem: A History of Racial Non-Being, argues that Immanuel Kant, widely considered the most influential philosopher of the modern period, is the first to claim the lives of non-white people are redundant and worthless. He articulates this through a metaphysics of minds and bodies that ultimately transforms the meaning of philosophy’s mind-body problem. A mind-body problem in the Kantian tradition is not a problem of how minds and bodies interact or brain states give rise (...)
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  4.  13
    DESCARTES ON THE DISPOSITION OF THE BLOOD AND THE SUBSTANTIAL UNION OF MIND AND BODY.John Harfouch - 2014 - Studia Philosophica 58 (3):109-124.
    ABSTRACT. This essay addresses the interpretation of Descartes’ understanding of the mind-body relationship as a substantial union in light of a statement he makes in the Passions de l’âme regarding the role of the blood and vital heat. Here, it seems Descartes cites these corporeal properties as the essential dispositions responsible for accommodating the soul into the human fetus. I argue that this statement should be read in the context of certain medical texts with which Descartes was familiar, namely those (...)
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  5.  6
    Anti-Colonial Middle Eastern and North African Thought.John Harfouch - 2021 - Radical Philosophy Review 24 (2):169-197.
    I argue that while recognition is important for Middle Eastern and North African philosophers in academia and society, recognition alone should not define the anti-colonial movement. BDS provides a better model of engagement because it constructs identities in order to bring about material changes in the academy and beyond. In the first part of the essay, I catalog how MENA thought traditions have been and continue to be suppressed within the academy and philosophy in particular. I then sketch one possible (...)
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  6.  19
    A Subaltern Pain: The Problem of Violence in Philosophy’s Pain Discourse.John Harfouch - 2019 - Eidos. A Journal for Philosophy of Culture 3 (3):127-144.
    The scientific and philosophical approach to pain must be supplemented by a hermeneutics studying how racism has complicated the communication of pain. Such an investigation reveals that not only are non-white people seen as credibly speaking their pain, but also pain “science” is one of the ways races have historically been constructed. I illustrate this through a study of Frantz Fanon’s clinical writings, along with eighteenth- and nineteenth-century slave-owners’ medical manuals and related documents. I suggest that, with this history, what (...)
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  7.  42
    Kant’s Racial Mind–Body Unions.John Harfouch & John Elias Nale - 2015 - Continental Philosophy Review 48 (1):41-58.
    Eric Voegelin’s writings on the historical development of the concept of race in the early 1930s are important to philosophy today in part because they provide a model upon which scholars can further integrate modern philosophy with the critical philosophy of race. In constructing his history, Voegelin’s methodological orientation depends on the centrality of both Kant’s work and the problem of the mind–body union to the concept of race. This essay asks how one might hold these premises if Kant seems (...)
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  8.  29
    Another Mind-Body Problem: A History of Racial Non-Being.John Harfouch - 2018 - Albany: SUNY.
    The mind-body problem in philosophy is typically understood as a discourse concerning the relation of mental states to physical states, and the experience of sensation. On this level it seems to transcend issues of race and racism, but Another Mind-Body Problem demonstrates that racial distinctions have been an integral part of the discourse since the Modern period in philosophy. Reading figures such as Descartes, Leibniz, and Kant in their historical contexts, John Harfouch uncovers discussions of mind and body that engaged (...)
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  9. Arthur de Gobineau on Blood and Race.John Harfouch - 2014 - Critical Philosophy of Race 2 (1):106-124.
    The notion of racial blood in Gobineau’s Essai sur l’inégalité des races humaines is not deployed in a strictly physiological manner. Gobineau refers to blood in a number of passages designating a spiritual and historical substance accounting for the unity of a people. This use of the term cannot be discredited by a chemical or genetic analysis of the material blood because Gobineau is not engaged in a classification of physical body types but rather a his-torical explanation of civilizations’ progress (...)
     
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  10.  17
    The Arab That Cannot Be Killed.John Harfouch - 2017 - Radical Philosophy Review 20 (2):219-241.
    This paper argues that certain orientalist writings authorize the genocide of Arab peoples precisely by establishing the conditions for the impossibility of Arab death. Of particular import to this analysis is the nineteenth century philological work of famed orientalist Ernest Renan, who argues that Arabs are psychically inorganic because their language has never demonstrated the organic historical development characteristic of European peoples. The historico-logical impossibility of killing Arab peoples is essential not only if philosophers are going to grasp the rationale (...)
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