Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and the bad isms of prejudice.

The bad isms are racism, sexism, ageism, etc, etc.  There is a lot of recent work on how to combat biases of these kinds, particularly implicit ones, of which their possessors are not aware, or are only slightly aware.  Leverhulme, for example, generously funded 4 workshops at Sheffield on the topic.

Cognitive Behavioral Theory could also be seen as addressing biases in one’s thinking.  It is also, apparently, empirically tested and quite successful.  Plus, it also often comes with great little handbooks.

Particularly attracted to the idea of developing a handbook, I’ve been wondering whether anyone has ever tried to do a CBT version for racism, etc.  (I’m assuming a technique not identical to plagiarism could make the handbook development easier than it might be if one were starting from scratch.)

Do you know of anyone who has tried to develop CBT for racism, sexism?

The state of Texas, and no doubt many other states and countries, have something like mandated workbooks for these things, which are on the web in the form of exams.  These are worthless, really.  What will you get if you give the same test to 800 faculty?  Lots and lots of copying.

Book on Racism in the Formation of the Philosophical Canon

Thanks to RM and SW for posting about this elsewhere!


There’s a recent book out entitled,Africa, Asia, and the History of Philosophy: Racism in the Formation of the Philosophical Canon, 1780–1830” by Peter Park.  (link to Amazon US)

Has anyone read it yet or have any thoughts? I’m considering getting it for winter break reading – though I’m somewhat baffled as to why the Kindle version is $64 (£39, €46) when then paperback is $25. (£15, €18)


Here is the summary from the SUNY Press page:

A historical investigation of the exclusion of Africa and Asia from modern histories of philosophy.

In this provocative historiography, Peter K. J. Park provides a penetrating account of a crucial period in the development of philosophy as an academic discipline. During these decades, a number of European philosophers influenced by Immanuel Kant began to formulate the history of philosophy as a march of progress from the Greeks to Kant—a genealogy that supplanted existing accounts beginning in Egypt or Western Asia and at a time when European interest in Sanskrit and Persian literature was flourishing. Not without debate, these traditions were ultimately deemed outside the scope of philosophy and relegated to the study of religion. Park uncovers this debate and recounts the development of an exclusionary canon of philosophy in the decades of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. To what extent was this exclusion of Africa and Asia a result of the scientization of philosophy? To what extent was it a result of racism?

This book includes the most extensive description available anywhere of Joseph-Marie de Gérando’s Histoire comparée des systèmes de philosophie, Friedrich Schlegel’s lectures on the history of philosophy, Friedrich Ast’s and Thaddä Anselm Rixner’s systematic integration of Africa and Asia into the history of philosophy, and the controversy between G. W. F. Hegel and the theologian August Tholuck over “pantheism.”

“Africa, Asia, and the History of Philosophy is a welcome addition to a neglected area in the history of ideas. Philosophy has long suffered from exclusions that keep us from fully appreciating the contributions to our field from Africa and Asia. Park’s book uncovers some of the sources of philosophy’s exclusionary practices. The historical detail is impressive.” — Elizabeth Millán, author of Friedrich Schlegel and the Emergence of Romantic Philosophy

Survey for philosophers of religion — especially women

A request for help from philosophers of religion — if you qualify, why not take the survey?

If you are a professional philosopher of religion (this includes graduate students) and have a moment to spare, I would be very grateful if you could fill in this survey: The survey is part of my British Academy project on religious epistemology. The purpose is to get a qualitative picture of the motivations of philosophers of religion for taking up this subject. Participation is anonymous. The format of the study is an open survey, where you will be asked to respond to a series of open questions. As the questions are open, it is entirely up to you to decide how long or detailed your responses are. You can also decide to leave the study at any time. I already have a good number of responses, but so far only a small percentage of my respondents are women. The more people participate, the better and more nuanced the results will be. Ideally, I would like to recruit people of various levels of seniority (e.g., graduate students, faculty members, non- tenureline faculty), male as well as female participants, working in various countries, and with various religious outlooks (including lack of religious belief). The study is designed and carried out by Helen De Cruz, postdoctoral fellow of the British Academy at the University of Oxford. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact helen.decruz[at]