The Routledge Handbook of Social and Political Philosophy of Language  book cover
1st Edition

The Routledge Handbook of Social and Political Philosophy of Language

ISBN 9780367759575
Published January 9, 2023 by Routledge
424 Pages

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Book Description

This Handbook brings together philosophical work on how language shapes, and is shaped by, social and political factors. Its 24 chapters were written exclusively for this volume by an international team of leading researchers, and together they provide a broad expert introduction to the major issues currently under discussion in this area.

The volume is divided into four parts:

Part I: Methodological and Foundational Issues
Part II: Non-ideal Semantics and Pragmatics
Part III: Linguistic Harms
Part IV: Applications

The parts, and chapters in each part, are introduced in the volume’s General Introduction. A list of Works Cited concludes each chapter, pointing readers to further areas of study. The Handbook is the first major, multi-authored reference work in this growing area and essential reading for anyone interested in the nature of language and its relationship to social and political reality.

Table of Contents


Part I: Social and Political Language: Methodological and Foundational Issues

1. Conceptual Engineering in Philosophy
Matti Eklund

2. Social Ontology
Mari Mikkola

3. An Invitation to Social and Political Metasemantics
Derek Ball

4. Linguistic Prescriptivism
Alex Barber and Robert Stainton

5. Speech Act Theory: Social and Political Applications
Rachel Mckinney and Dan Harris

6. On the Uselessness of the Distinction Between Ideal and Non-Ideal Theory (At Least in the Philosophy of Language)
Herman Cappelen and Josh Dever

Part II: Non-Ideal Semantics and Pragmatics

7. Lying, Deception, and Epistemic Advantage
Eliot Michaelson and Andreas Stokke

8. Propaganda
Anne Quaranto and Jason Stanley

9. Code Words
Justin Khoo

10. Racist and Sexist Figleaves
Jennifer Saul

11. Protests
Matthew Chrisman and Graham Hubbs

12. Defective Contexts
Andrew Peet

Part III: Linguistic Harms 

13. Varieties of Pejoratives
Robin Jeshion

14. Microaggressions and the Problem of Attributional Ambiguity
Christina Friedlaender

15. Hermeneutical Injustice
Rebecca Mason

16. Social and Political Aspects of Generic Language and Speech
Matthew Mckeever and Rachel Sterken

17. Language Extinction
Ethan Nowak

18. ’Laxwalxwashpotamáay Súngaan ‘Áawq // To Be Between the Blind Snake’s Teeth’: Indigenous Language Reclamation Between the Fangs of A (Simulated) Dilemma
Shelbi Meissner

Part IV: Applications

19. Language and Free Speech
Ishani Maitra and Mary Kate Mcgowan

20. Language and Ideology
Eric Swanson

21. Language and Legitimation
Robert Simpson

22. How Much Gender is Too Much Gender?
Robin Dembroff and Daniel Wodak

23. On Language and Sexuality: Demisexuals, Polyamorous, Bambi Lesbians, and Other Queers
Esa Diaz-Leon and Saray Ayala-Lopez

24. The Language of Mental Illness
Renee Jorgensen Bolinger

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Justin Khoo is Associate Professor of Philosophy at MIT. He works primarily at the intersection of philosophy of language and linguistic semantics, and has research interests in metaphysics and meta-ethics.

Rachel Sterken is Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of Hong Kong. She works primarily at the intersection of philosophy of language, semantics, ethics, and social philosophy. Most of her research focuses on the semantics of generic language and issues related to conceptual engineering.