•  89
    Agrarian Ideals and Practices: Comments on Paul B. Thompson’s The Agrarian Vision
    Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 25 (4): 535-541. 2012.
    In The Agrarian Vision , Thompson argues that a better appreciation of agrarian ideals could lead to a more virtuous, more sustainable way of life. While I agree with Thompson in many respects, there are some aspects of the book that I question and others that I would like to hear Thompson explicate in greater detail. In this paper, I question Thompson’s claim that agrarian farmers and farming communities serve as ideal models of virtuous habits and good character. I challenge Thompson’s use of …Read more
  •  65
    Collating, for the first time, the key writings of Leonard Harris, this volume introduces readers to a leading figure in African-American and liberatory thought. Harris' writings on honor, insurrectionist ethics, tradition, and his work on Alain Locke have established him as a leading figure in critical philosophy. His timely and urgent responses to structural racism and structural violence mark him out as a bold cultural commentator and a deft theoretician. The wealth and depth of Harris' writi…Read more
  •  59
    Symposium on Insurrectionist Ethics
    Transactions of the Charles S. Peirce Society 49 (1): 27-111. 2013.
    This symposium examines insurrectionist ethics, the brainchild of Leonard Harris. The position does not stem from one key source; it was born out of Harris’s philosophical interaction with various philosophers over an extended period, including thinkers as diverse as David Walker, Karl Marx, Edward Wilmot Blyden, Alain Locke, and Angela Davis. The driving questions are: What counts as justified protest? Do slaves have a moral duty to insurrect? What character traits and modes to resistance are m…Read more
  •  45
    New Descriptions, New Possibilities
    Journal of Speculative Philosophy 32 (1): 168-178. 2018.
    In “Race, Multiculturalism, and Democracy,” Robert Gooding-Williams offers an insight. He writes: “Our sense of ourselves and of the possibilities existing for us is, to a significant degree, a function of the descriptions we have available to us to conceptualize our intended actions and prospective lives. . . . ‘Hence if new modes of description come into being, new possibilities of action come into being in consequence.’” In this article, I discuss the philosopher’s role in the articulation of…Read more
  •  35
    Insurrectionist Ethics and Thoreau
    Transactions of the Charles S. Peirce Society 49 (1): 29-45. 2013.
    The American philosophical tradition is often portrayed as a genteel tradition that is committed to democracy and the incremental expansion of democracy through suasionist means. In an attempt to complicate this narrative, the author articulates the basic features of Leonard Harris’s insurrectionist ethics, then attempts to locate this insurrectionist ethics in the work of Henry D. Thoreau. It is argued that this insurrectionist ethos is a fecund addition to the American philosophical tradition …Read more
  •  34
    Collectivistic Individualism: Dewey and MacIntyre
    Contemporary Pragmatism 3 (1): 69-83. 2006.
    John Dewey and Alasdair MacIntyre are seldom considered philosophically compatible. Yet, both critique contemporary liberalism by focusing on the pervasiveness of atomistic, pecuniary, laissez-faire individualism. I argue that Dewey and MacIntyre have not abandoned individualism as much as reconstructed the concept. Dewey's and MacIntyre's conceptions of human flourishing rely on a nuanced conception of individualism, which I term "collectivistic individualism."
  •  32
    Insurrectionist Ethics and Racism
    In Naomi Zack (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy and Race, Oxford University Press. pp. 225-234. 2017.
    This paper discusses racism and the liberation of racially oppressed peoples. An account of insurrectionist ethics is offered, outlining the types of moral intuitions, character traits, and methods required to garner impetus for the liberation of oppressed groups. For illustrative purposes, the core tenets of insurrectionist ethics are highlighted in the work of Angela Davis. It is argued that insurrectionist ethics and its militant posture of resistance is crucial to human liberation and social…Read more
  •  27
    Racial Imperialism and Food Traditions
    In Anne Barnhill, Mark Budolfson & Tyler Doggett (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Food Ethics, Oxford University Press. pp. 333-344. 2018.
    This chapter draws questions of race into food ethics. Appropriating a conception of race articulated by Alain Locke (1885‒1954), it is suggested that racial imperialism and the attending drive to claim proprietary ownership of racialized cultural products is responsible for much of the intercultural strife and race-based injustice in the modern world. Foods and foodways, understood as cultural products, are then discussed against the backdrop of racial partisanship in the exchange and consumpti…Read more
  •  22
    Culture, Acquisitiveness, and Decolonial Philosophy
    In Corey McCall & Phillip McReynolds (eds.), Decolonizing American Philosophy, Suny Press. pp. 17-35. 2021.
    There has been a recent surge in decolonial discourse. Decolonial thought is touted in op-ed pieces and blogs and shared via social media. At university, one is prodded to decolonize the curriculum, the canon, the faculty. In broader contexts, some suggest decolonizing your diet, your sexuality, your future. Hoping to dispel superficial and enigmatic evocations, McBride articulates what he takes to be core features of decolonial philosophy. Decolonial philosophy is described as an oppositional r…Read more
  •  21
    Ethics and Insurrection articulates an ethical position that takes critical pragmatism and Harrisian insurrectionist philosophy seriously. It suggests that there are values and norms that create boundaries that confine, reduce and circumscribe the actions we allow ourselves to consider. McBride argues that an insurrectionist ethos is integral in the disavowing of norms and traditions that justify or perpetuate oppression and that we must throw our faith behind something, some set of values, if w…Read more
  •  16
    A Lack of Sympathetic Understanding in the Classroom: Remarks from a Graduate Student Instructor
    The APA Newsletter on Teaching in Philosophy 4 (1): 12-14. 2004.
    This paper elucidates a key element that is often missing from graduate training in philosophy -- the art of teaching. In the first section, the author details the extent of the training many philosophers receive in the area of teaching. In the second section, the notion of sympathetic understanding (a la William James, Jane Addams, and John Dewey) is introduced. In the last section, the author articulates the role of sympathetic understanding in the classroom and the benefits that arise from it…Read more
  •  14
    Leftist Democratic Politics
    In Michael Reder, Dominik Finkelde, Alexander Filipovic & Johannes Wallacher (eds.), Jahrbuch Praktische Philosophie in globaler Perspektive / Yearbook Practical Philosophy in a Global Perspective, Verlag Karl Alber. pp. 74-92. 2017.
    This paper offers an account of leftist democratic politics, one that seeks insights and new possibilities in the confluence of liberal-reformist thought and radical democratic post-Marxist thought. An interpretation of the renascent liberalism of John Dewey is compared to the radical democracy of Ernesto Laclau and Chantal Mouffe, exposing shared commitments to radical democracy, egalitarianism, and continued struggles to combat the varied intersectional manifestations of subordination. The aut…Read more
  •  12
    Pragmatist Feminism and the Work of Charlene Haddock Seigfried (edited book)
    Bloomsbury Publishing. forthcoming.
    A contemporary appraisal of the breadth, significance, and legacy of the work of Charlene Haddock Seigfried, this book brings together writings focused on pragmatist feminism/feminist pragmatism, contemporary pragmatism, William James and the reconstruction of philosophy, education and American philosophy in the 21st century. Charlene Haddock Seigfried is a looming figure in American thought and feminist theory who coined the phrase 'pragmatist feminist' which has become an increasingly importan…Read more
  •  6
    Anger and Approbation
    In Myisha Cherry & Owen Flanagan (eds.), The Moral Psychology of Anger, Rowman & Littlefield. pp. 1-13. 2018.
    Martha Nussbaum argues that “garden-variety anger” is normatively irrational, politically unnecessary, and inevitably destructive (Nussbaum 2015). Anger, on this account, is portrayed as a primitive vestige of bygone days, an impediment to the genuine pursuit of justice and the honoring of obligations. Yet, on Nussbaum’s account, there is one exception: “transitional anger” – anger that quickly transitions into compassionate hope, focusing on future welfare. Martin Luther King, Jr. is evoked as …Read more
  •  3
    This chapter highlights the need to respond to human limits of attention and perspective with sympathetic apprehension of the other points of view—especially those who are rendered opaque. McBride outlines a way that Seigfried’s notions of radical empiricism, experimental logic, and cooperative intelligence can hang together, suggesting that pragmatist feminism comes with an imperative to weave and reweave our social fabric, to broaden the range of our experiences, to incorporate the perspective…Read more
  •  2
    Agrarian Ideals and Practices: Comments on Paul B. Thompson’s The Agrarian Vision
    Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 25 (4): 535-541. 2012.
    In The Agrarian Vision, Thompson argues that a better appreciation of agrarian ideals could lead to a more virtuous, more sustainable way of life. While I agree with Thompson in many respects, there are some aspects of the book that I question and others that I would like to hear Thompson explicate in greater detail. In this paper, I question Thompson’s claim that agrarian farmers and farming communities serve as ideal models of virtuous habits and good character. I challenge Thompson’s use of v…Read more