PHIL 274.001 – Race, Racism, and Social Justice: African-American Political Philosophy
Instructor: Daniel Muñoz. This course meets MW 3:35 – 4:50 p.m. in PE 2066.
This class is an introduction to four topics in African-American political philosophy. First: freedom, and in particular, Frederick Douglass’s view that slavery is a violation of natural rights. We next consider political protest: is Booker T. Washington right to see it as a servile call for help, or is W.E.B. DuBois right to see it as dignified self-defense? Third is political strategy—should we stick to our principles, or pragmatically compromise?—with a special focus on Martin Luther King, Jr., Bayard Rustin, and the Civil Rights Movement. Finally, we close with a debate over the legitimacy of prisons, with Angela Davis arguing for abolition and Tommie Shelby arguing for reform. Each unit will feature a blend of philosophy, history, and social science. Lectures will emphasize discussion and may feature some music and documentary footage.