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Original scientific paper

Multidimensionalism, Resistance, and The Demographic Problem

Ian James Kidd ; University of Nottingham

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Linda Martín Alcoff and others have emphasised that the discipline of philosophy suffers from a ‘demographic problem’. The persistence of this problem is partly the consequence of various forms of resistance to efforts to address the demographic problem. Such resistance is complex and takes many forms and could be responded to in different ways. In this paper, I argue that our attempts to explain and understand the phenomenon of resistance should use a kind of explanatory pluralism that, following Quassim Cassam, I call multidimensionalism. I describe four general kinds of resistance and consider varying explanations, focusing on those focused on vices and social structures. I argue that vice-explanations and structural- explanations are both mutually consistent and mutually entailing. If so, there is no need to choose between vice explanations and structural explanations or any other kinds of explanation. We can and should be multidimensionalists: using many together is better.


explanation, pluralism, structures, vices, women in philosophy

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