Philosophy Talk by Alex King

Date, time, location

Friday, April 12, 2024
4:30 pm to 6:00 pm EDT

King Building, 343

10 N. Professor St.
Oberlin, OH 44074

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Additional details

Free and Open to the Public

Alex King will give the Philosophy Talk "Cultural Appropriation and the Objectification of the Other".

Abstract: My talk aims to explain what is wrong with cultural appropriation. I argue that cultural appropriation is wrong because it objectifies the appropriatees (those from whom something is appropriated) as Other, which often operates by essentializing appropriatees. Drawing on thinkers in neo-Kantian and Marxist feminist philosophy, I discuss what it takes to objectify people as Other and how doing so depends on broader cultural practices. An important aim of the account is to capture both what is systemic and what is individual about cultural appropriation. As such, this view takes inspiration from, but runs counter to, existing accounts of cultural appropriation, which have largely to do either with the appropriatees’ reactions or with oppression and harm.

Alex King is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Simon Fraser University in British Columbia, Canada. She has written widely on issues in ethics and aesthetics, especially concerning questions about aesthetic and moral normativity. She is author of the book What We Ought and What We Can (Routledge 2019) and runs the philosophy of art website Aesthetics for Birds.

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