•  84
    Reckoning With Kant on Race
    Philosophical Forum 51 (3): 221-245. 2020.
    This essay develops Kant’s theory of reform to theorize racial justice reform. I assess the function of Kant’s philosophy of race as part of his nonideal theory of justice, which offers a racist pragmatic anthropology that uses the concept of race to determine the practical effectiveness of legislative reason. His philosophy of race defends a teleological account of the natural history of the human species to fulfill the requirements of justice and assumes that certain racial groups have failed …Read more
  •  74
    W.E.B. Du Bois
    In Simon Choat & Manjeet Ramgotra (eds.), Reconsidering Political Thinkers, . forthcoming.
    This chapter introduces W.E.B. Du Bois’s original political thought and his strategies for political advocacy. It is limited to explaining the pressure he puts on the liberal social contract tradition, which prioritizes the public values of freedom and equality for establishing fair and inclusive terms of political membership. However, unlike most liberal theorists, Du Bois’s political thought concentrates on the politics of race, colonialism, gender, and labor, among other themes, in order to r…Read more
  •  72
    In this essay I develop W.E.B. Du Bois’s concept of double consciousness to demonstrate the limitations of Kant’s and Rawls’s models of self-respect. I argue that neither Kant nor Rawls can explain what self-respect and resistance to oppression warrants under the conditions of violent and systematic racial exclusion. I defend Du Bois’s proposal of voluntary black self-segregation during the Jim Crow era and explain why Du Bois believes that the black American community has a moral right to asser…Read more
  •  70
    In this tour-de-force, Elvira Basevich examines this paradox by tracing the development of W.E.B. Du Bois's life and thought and the relevance of his legacy to our troubled age. She adroitly analyzes the main concepts that inform Du Bois’s critique of American democracy, such as the color line and double consciousness, before examining how these concepts might inform our understanding of contemporary struggles, from Black Lives Matter to the campaign for reparations for slavery. She stresses the…Read more
  •  40
    In this essay, I defend the pragmatic relevance of race in history. Kant and Hegel’s racist development thesis assumes that nonwhite, non-European racial groups are defective practical agents. In response, philosophers have opted to drop race from a theory of history and progress. They posit that denying its pragmatic relevance amounts to anti-racist egalitarianism. I dub this tactic ‘colorblind cosmopolitanism’ and offer grounds for its rejection. Following Du Bois, I ascribe, instead, a pragma…Read more
  •  30
    In this essay, I argue that Hegel’s model of ethical life is normatively gripping for Du Bois’s critique of Radical Reconstruction. My argument proceeds in three steps. First, I use Du Bois’s insights to explain the nature of progressive political change in historical time, an account Hegel lacks. I reconstruct the normative basis of Du Bois's political critique by articulating the three essential features of public reasoning qua citizenship. Second, I defend the promise of black civic enfranchi…Read more
  •  6
    The Place of Values in a World of Politics: Personality, Motivation, and Ideology
    with John Jost
    In Oxford Handbook of Value, Oxford University Press. 2016.
    The current chapter discusses on the place of values in a world of politics: personality, motivation, and ideology. There are similarly daunting questions of a political or philosophical nature. If it is the case that value pluralism—if not outright conflict—is inevitable, what are the implications for democratic and related forms of governance? How might political institutions be designed so that citizens and policy makers alike will be able to absorb and tolerate ideological and other sources …Read more
  •  4
    W.E.B. Du Bois on Freedom, Race, and American Modernity
    Dissertation, The Graduate Center, CUNY. 2017.
    My dissertation defends W.E.B. Du Bois’s philosophy of modern freedom, which he grounds in the historical reconstruction of the American civic community on the moral basis of free and equal citizenship. Rather than ascribe to him an elitist politics of racial ‘uplift’ and assimilation to Anglo- American folkways, I instead argue that he defends black moral and political autonomy for securing state power and civic equality. Additionally, he challenges both historical and the contemporary politica…Read more
  • W.E.B. Du Bois’s socialism has provoked debate for decades. His democratic theory and critique of political economy supports democratic socialism. In this article, I offer a philosophical reconstruction of the normative foundation of his democratic socialism in three steps. First, I argue that his philosophy of the modern democratic state supports the people’s advance of the principle of free and equal citizenship or civic equality. Next, I present his critique of the modern American welfare sta…Read more
  • The Function of the Philosopher and the Public in Du Bois’s Political Thought
    Australasian Philosophical Review 4 (1): 63-68. 2020.
    ABSTRACT I draw on W.E.B. Du Bois’s political thought to challenge de Shalit’s characterization of the role of the philosopher and the public in political theory. I press three issues to clarify what it would take for a political philosopher to take into consideration what the public thinks: the relation of the method of public reflective equilibrium to history and the empirical sciences; the moral education that results from the public’s participation in philosophical discussions; and how polit…Read more
  • In spite of his blistering critique of Kant, in his new project of a black radical Kantianism, Charles Mills proposes to “de-racialize” Kant’s republican liberalism by reshaping it in the light of “the realities of racial domination.” By his own admission, Mills is keen to “de-ghettoize” Africana and Afro-modern philosophy to show its overlap with—and capacity to transform—Kantian discourse. In this essay, I argue that a black radical Kantianism is best characterized as a nonideal theory of ref…Read more