Epistemic Injustice: Power and the Ethics of Knowing

Paperback | August 1, 2009

byMiranda Fricker

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Epistemic Injustice explores the idea that there is a distinctively epistemic kind of injustice - injustice which consists in a wrong done to someone specifically in their capacity as a knower. Miranda Fricker distinguishes two forms of epistemic injustice: testimonial injustice andhermeneutical injustice. Testimonial injustice occurs when prejudice causes a hearer to give a deflated level of credibility to a speaker's word; as in the case where the police do not believe someone because he is black. Hermeneutical injustice, by contrast, occurs when a gap in collectiveinterpretative resources puts someone at an unfair disadvantage when it comes to making sense of their social experiences. A central case of this sort of injustice is found in the example of a woman who suffers sexual harassment prior to the time when we acquired this critical concept, so that shecannot properly comprehend her own experience, let alone render it communicatively intelligible to others. In connection with each of these forms of epistemic injustice, Fricker develops the idea that our testimonial sensibility needs to incorporate a corrective, anti-prejudicial virtue that can beused to promote a more veridical and a more democratic epistemic practice. Epistemology as it has traditionally been pursued has been impoverished by the lack of any theoretical framework conducive to revealing the ethical and political aspects of our epistemic conduct. Epistemic Injustice shows that virtue epistemology provides a general epistemological idiom in whichthese issues can be fruitfully and forcefully discussed.

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Epistemic Injustice explores the idea that there is a distinctively epistemic kind of injustice - injustice which consists in a wrong done to someone specifically in their capacity as a knower. Miranda Fricker distinguishes two forms of epistemic injustice: testimonial injustice andhermeneutical injustice. Testimonial injustice occurs ...

Miranda Fricker is Reader in the School of Philosophy at Birkbeck College, University of London.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:208 pages, 8.5 × 5.43 × 0.02 inPublished:August 1, 2009Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199570523

ISBN - 13:9780199570522

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Table of Contents

PrefaceIntroduction1. Testimonial Injustice2. Prejudice In The Credibility Economy3. Towards A Virtue Epistemological Account of Testimony4. The Virtue of Testimonial Justice5. The Genealogy of Testimonial Justice6. Original Significances: The Wrong Revisited7. Hermeneutical InjusticeConclusionIndex

Editorial Reviews

"In this elegantly crafted book, Miranda Fricker's timely project of "looking at the negative space that is epistemic injustice" comes to fruition...this is a path-breaking study. With this book Miranda Fricker has opened space for the new meanings the "more squarely political" analysis willrequire. Her readers will look forward to the next phase of this creative, vitally important project." --Lorraine Code, Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews