chapter  4
Evolving Concepts of Epistemic Injustice
ByMiranda Fricker
Pages 8

This chapter delineates a distinctive class of wrongs, namely those in which someone is ingenuously downgraded and/or disadvantaged in respect of their status as an epistemic subject. A first point to make is that this kind of epistemic injustice is fundamentally a form of (direct or indirect) discrimination. The cause of testimonial injustice is a prejudice through which the speaker is misjudged and perceived as epistemically lesser (a direct discrimination). The cause of a hermeneutical injustice is a background inequality of hermeneutical opportunity - specifically, hermeneutical marginalisation in relation to some area of social experience. Hermeneutical injustice is the actualisation of unequal hermeneutical opportunity, which can be somewhat mitigated by especially virtuous epistemic and communicative conduct on the part of any individual hearer. The new applications of the concepts of testimonial and hermeneutical injustice exemplify the ground-up energies that will no doubt somewhat evolve the concepts themselves, perhaps ultimately broadening them out in unforeseen ways.