Discrimination And Criticism In Charles Mills's The Racial Contract

1442 Words 6 Pages
“The Racial Contract” depicts Charles Mills’ radical perspective on racism as the foundation of the social contract. The core of Locke’s political thought is exposed, heavily linked to domination and exploitation. Racial roots of the social contract evoke global division and the existence of full/sub-persons. Mills rejects and challenges Locke’s conventional contract theory by acknowledging racism as the linchpin of the social contract, rather than an unintended consequence of imperfect man. His critique recognizes covert power roots of racism within the political system that, formally and informally dictate socioeconomic privileges. Historical events depict a continued nature of exploitation as Mills utilizes the racial contract to place racial …show more content…
He claims, “the racial contract is a historical actuality,” (19), with evidence revealing a plethora of exploitation in a continuing white supremacist state. The racial contract investigates the paradoxical foundations of Locke where nonwhite tacit consent to white privileges inhibit natural and civic equality. The core of Locke’s social contract is rooted in racism that facilitates domination. Interpreting his own outlook on contract theory, Locke focuses on the contract as a theoretical construct of political philosophy. While Locke depicts origins and legitimacy of agreement into civil society, Mills counters the Lockean principles of universal equality, labeling it as white-inclusive. To a great extent this tarnishes the utopian aurora that follows previous interpretations of contract theory and establishes no grounds of justification in the deprivation of liberties to …show more content…
However these pale in comparison to the effectiveness of actual historical truths in imperialism, colonialism, and other atrocities that expose Locke for relations of domination and exploitation. He extends past liberty and equality, providing a framework of how economic foundations in the current economy are rooted in racist social contract ideals. Global historical reoccurrences reinforce his claim that these lead to mass discourse, and the presence of domination roots in Locke’s political theory. Mills surpasses the core of Locke’s thought by discussing racism as an ideology. While, “the social contract requires that all citizens and persons learn to respect themselves,” (72), the racial contract acknowledges epistemologies of ignorance and political domination within the social contract. Racially motivated ignorance is proven to drive the social contract and foundation of John Locke. Mills attests how most state of natures involve savages or a, “garden gone to a seed,” (46), with imperfect men. Instead of suggesting race as a construction and a regrettable deviation, Mills appropriately identifies inherent racism in Locke, detailing cases of downplayed and neglected nonwhite achievements. Mills provides a unique perspective that tarnishes Locke’s legacy. To a fair extent, Locke still holds value through

Related Documents