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Hucksters of the “Postcolonial Business” in Search of Academic Respectability: Reflections on Contemporary Pseudo Anti-Racism in France

Abstract : Over the past five decades, anti-racism institutionalized itself within all democratic nations. Yet the movement also turned against itself by intellectualizing and politicizing itself among minorities actively engaged in a “radical critique” of dominations of class, gender, and race. From the 1970s onward, these tendencies increased, giving rise, in the United States and then in many Western democracies, to “political correctness” as a form of policing of ordinary and expert language, as well as of political opinions and beliefs. It is within this framework that the reversal of antiracism occurred, based on two correlative operations:The proliferation of identity postures led to a tendency of monopolizing the fight against racism according to the principle “to each group identity its ‘racism’ and its ‘anti-racism,’” thereby fueling competition between self-victimized groups. In parallel, the racialization of models of intelligibility of the social adorned the confused notion of “race” with explanatory value in the social sciences, while the word “race” is flown like a flag by activists of this or that “racial community.” It is in the name of this equivocal “anti-racism,” with its many competing and contradictory meanings, that a racialist worldview is thus being recast. [First paragraph]
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Pierre-André Taguieff. Hucksters of the “Postcolonial Business” in Search of Academic Respectability: Reflections on Contemporary Pseudo Anti-Racism in France. Telos, 2020, pp.13 - 35. ⟨10.3817/1220193013⟩. ⟨hal-03207367⟩

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