Tracking Epistemic Violence, Tracking Practices of Silencing
Article first published online: 10 MAR 2011
© by Hypatia, Inc.
Volume 26, Issue 2, pages 236–257, Spring 2011
How to Cite
DOTSON, K. (2011), Tracking Epistemic Violence, Tracking Practices of Silencing. Hypatia, 26: 236–257. doi: 10.1111/j.1527-2001.2011.01177.x
- Issue published online: 27 APR 2011
- Article first published online: 10 MAR 2011
Too often, identifying practices of silencing is a seemingly impossible exercise. Here I claim that attempting to give a conceptual reading of the epistemic violence present when silencing occurs can help distinguish the different ways members of oppressed groups are silenced with respect to testimony. I offer an account of epistemic violence as the failure, owing to pernicious ignorance, of hearers to meet the vulnerabilities of speakers in linguistic exchanges. Ultimately, I illustrate that by focusing on the ways in which hearers fail to meet speaker dependency in a linguistic exchange, efforts can be made to demarcate the different types of silencing people face when attempting to testify from oppressed positions in society.