Oct 10 – 5:30PM – Philosophy Workshop – “The Phenomenology of Ritual Resistance: Colin Kaepernick as Confucian Sage"
The Montclair Philosophy Workshop is an ongoing series of talks where philosophers meet to discuss new, cutting-edge work in all areas of philosophy. Everyone is welcome.
Thursday, October 10, 2019
“The Phenomenology of Ritual Resistance: Colin Kaepernick as Confucian Sage“
Philip Walsh (Fordham University)
Description: In 2016, Colin Kaepernick, a quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers, remained seated during the national anthem in order to protest racial injustice and police brutality against African-Americans. After consulting with National Football League (NFL) and military veteran Nate Boyer, Kaepernick switched to taking a knee during the anthem for the remainder of the season. Several NFL players and other professional athletes subsequently adopted this gesture. This paper brings together complementary Confucian and phenomenological analyses to elucidate the significance of Kaepernick’s gesture, and in the process provide a phenomenological characterization of the connection between the Confucian notions of sagehood and ritual. Kaepernick’s gesture subverts the anthem ritual from within while simultaneously remaining faithful to the ideals it is meant to express. Furthermore, it institutes a new bodily form of patriotic self-expression compatible with both American and Confucian ideals.
5:30PM—6:45PM, Schmitt 104