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A Peircean Epistemic Argument for a Modest Multiculturalism

A Peircean Epistemic Argument for a Modest Multiculturalism Contemporary Pragmatism Vol. 8, No. 2 (December 2011), 163­185 Editions Rodopi © 2011 J. Caleb Clanton and Andrew T. Forcehimes Extending recent appropriations of Charles S. Peirce's work in political theory, we argue that the same epistemic norms that justify democracy offer a plausible basis for justifying multiculturalist policies aimed at protecting at-risk cultural groups. Because this epistemic argument is compatible with a full range of reasonable comprehensive doctrines, it fully accommodates the fact of reasonable pluralism, thereby skirting the Rawlsian objection to which the multiculturalisms of Charles Taylor and Will Kymlicka fall prey. Arguments aimed at justifying group-differential treatment generally fall into one of two broad categories ­ what we shall here call intrinsic arguments and instrumentalist arguments.1 The first type of argument contends that certain cultural groups deserve special consideration and treatment on the grounds that cultures are intrinsically valuable and therefore worthy of recognition or also protection. The second type of argument holds that group-differential treatment is justified not on the grounds that cultures are valuable in themselves, but because they are instrumental in securing some important basic good. In both cases, multiculturalists contend that group-differential treatment ­ whether in the form of special privileges, http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Contemporary Pragmatism Brill

A Peircean Epistemic Argument for a Modest Multiculturalism

Contemporary Pragmatism , Volume 8 (2): 163 – Apr 21, 2011

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
© Copyright 2011 by Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
1572-3429
eISSN
1875-8185
DOI
10.1163/18758185-90000208
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Contemporary Pragmatism Vol. 8, No. 2 (December 2011), 163­185 Editions Rodopi © 2011 J. Caleb Clanton and Andrew T. Forcehimes Extending recent appropriations of Charles S. Peirce's work in political theory, we argue that the same epistemic norms that justify democracy offer a plausible basis for justifying multiculturalist policies aimed at protecting at-risk cultural groups. Because this epistemic argument is compatible with a full range of reasonable comprehensive doctrines, it fully accommodates the fact of reasonable pluralism, thereby skirting the Rawlsian objection to which the multiculturalisms of Charles Taylor and Will Kymlicka fall prey. Arguments aimed at justifying group-differential treatment generally fall into one of two broad categories ­ what we shall here call intrinsic arguments and instrumentalist arguments.1 The first type of argument contends that certain cultural groups deserve special consideration and treatment on the grounds that cultures are intrinsically valuable and therefore worthy of recognition or also protection. The second type of argument holds that group-differential treatment is justified not on the grounds that cultures are valuable in themselves, but because they are instrumental in securing some important basic good. In both cases, multiculturalists contend that group-differential treatment ­ whether in the form of special privileges,

Journal

Contemporary PragmatismBrill

Published: Apr 21, 2011

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