24.892 Classification, Natural Kinds, and Conceptual Change: Race as a Case Study

As taught in: Spring 2004

A caricature of racial intermarriage in the United States, 1864.

A political caricature of racial intermarriage in the United States, 1864. (Image courtesy of Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division [reproduction number: LC-USZ62-8840 (b&w film copy neg.)].)

Level:

Graduate

Instructors:

Prof. Koffi Maglo

Prof. Sally Haslanger

Course Description

This course will consider the claim that there is no such thing as race, with a particular emphasis on the question whether races should be thought of as natural kinds: is our concept of race a natural kind concept? Is the term 'race' a natural kind term? If so, is Appiah right to conclude that there are no races? How should one go about "analyzing" the concept of race?