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In the introduction to Part I of this special project, we made the strong claim that philosophy itself—and theory as a practice—has fallen short of its radical potential by not ruthlessly attending to the material conditions of mass/hyper-incarceration in the United States. It is also our claim that it is foremost radical philosophers and theorists who should heed this call. It is especially attendant on philosophers working in the radical traditions of marxism, feminism, queer theory, post-colonial theory, trans* studies, disability studies, critical race studies, and animal studies to be receptive to the material conditions of mass incarceration, precisely because these radical traditions are in a position to be receptive to the material conditions and to listen to the concrete challenges laid down by activists. Put differently, philosophers working in radical traditions can and must be attentive and receptive to the ways that movements—such as prison and police abolition, #blacklivesmatter, decolonial and indigenous resurgence, disability justice, and trans*liberation—seek justice and liberation from current conditions. As Iris Marion Young reminds us, “In order to be a useful measure of actual justice and injustice, it [a theory of justice] must contain some substantive premises about social life, which are usually derived, explicitly or implicitly, from the actual social context in which the theorizing takes place.”

Recommended Citation

Cisneros, Natalie, and Andrew Dilts. “Political Theory and Philosophy in a Time of Mass Incarceration: Introduction to Part II.” Radical Philosophy Review 18, no. 2 (2015): 263–265.