• This course retraces the development of African American philosophy, up to the present, with a special eye to the social, political, and moral questions most central to the modern inner city. One of our primary sources will be individuals impacted by mass incarceration and institutional inequities.
• We’ll begin by discussing its relevance, taking a crash-course in philosophical writing and argumentation, and by recounting the historical progression of Black psychological and philosophical thought in the United States up through the Second Great Migration.
• We’ll then shift gears to the contemporary context, drawing on urban sociology to explore philosophical questions surrounding agency, identity, self-respect, and governmental influence.
• One of our guiding themes throughout will be the “double consciousness” of (especially, disadvantaged) Black Americans identified by Du Bois – the tension between integration and separatism still central to debates in social and political philosophy today.
Course Requirements: In addition to attendance and reading/viewing requirements, there will be two 3 page papers. Each of the paper is worth 40% of the final grade and class participation 20%.
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