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date: 26 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

The relationship between antiracist critical theory and the study of the history of African American thought merits consideration in light of an ongoing debate between anachronists and antiquarians about the relationship between the current practice of philosophy and the study of the history of philosophy. Contemporary antiracist critical theory is extensive and includes expansive genealogical and critical historical accounts of modern racism; racial and gender oppression; roles that policing, prison growth, and segregation play in perpetuating racial inequality; and appraisals of recent black politics—including the “Black Lives Matter” movement. Many of these efforts take up the history of African American political thought and complicate our understanding of the relationship between the issues that engage contemporary critical theorists and the issues that engaged some of their predecessors. Recent scholarship on the social and political thought of W. E. B. Du Bois is highly relevant to this comparison between critical theory and intellectual history.

Keywords: anachronism, antiquarianism, Du Bois, ideology, antiracist critical theory

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