Department für Philosophie

Reclaim the Name – A Philosophical Analysis of the Reclamation of Fighting Words

  • Ansprechpartner:

    Inga Bones

The research project merges two topics that are currently hotly debated in philosophy: hate speech, in particular so-called ‘fighting words’ – racial slurs, epithets relating to sexual identity, etc. – and conceptual engineering, that is, the “critical/constructive enterprise of assessing and improving our representational devices” (Cappelen 2018, p. ix).

The aim of the project is to answer the question whether the reclamation of so-called ‘fighting words’ – words as, for instance, ‘slut,’ ‘queer,’ or the n-word – by their intended targets is plausibly viewed as a variety of conceptual engineering. In order to do so, a detailed analysis of how exactly reclamation works is called for.

Ansprechpartnerin: Inga Bones,