Prejudice and Expertise: Discrimination in the West, 1850-2000

Event Details

  • Event date: 22/03/2018 – 23/03/2018
  • Venue: University of Warwick

The first decades of the 21st century have seen the reemergence of prejudice as a factor in European and North American politics and society. Events ranging from the rise of the far-right in France and Germany to Brexit and the election of Donald Trump have been ascribed by a range of commentators to political discontent in part motivated by racial and religious prejudice, misogyny, and xenophobia.

We propose to explore how prejudice of all forms has been historically — and is today — constructed, supported and represented to the public. In particular, this conference will aim to show how discriminatory polices and perspectives have been rationalized by recourse to theories about human ‘difference’. How exactly has prejudice been justified historically?  What evidence has been harnessed to justify discriminating against marginal groups?  Who creates the arguments for mistreating others, and how do their ideas inform professional practice and permeate the public sphere?

In the course of this conference, we hope to examine how the intellectual and academic underpinnings of prejudice are presented for public consumption through media and popular culture, and how those popularizations impact politics and public policy.


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