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4/27 – Michael Brownstein, “The Psychology and Philosophy of Implicit Bias” @ Brooklyn Public Philosophers

Apr 27, 2016 @ 7:00 pm

| Free

On Wednesday, April 27th at 7:00 P.M., Michael Brownstein is coming to Brooklyn Public Philosophers to introduce you to (and maybe help exorcise) your inner bigot. He’ll be talking about implicit bias – what it is, its place in the mind, and its relation to moral responsibility and self-trust. Here’s a bit more about the talk, in Dr. Brownstein’s own words:

The Psychology and Philosophy of Implicit Bias

“Implicit Bias” is in the headlines. Bestselling books like Malcolm Gladwell’s Blink and Shankar Vedantam’s The Hidden Brain suggest that implicit biases explain a lot about everyday social interaction. In his National Initiative for Building Community Trust and Justice, former US Attorney General Eric Holder prioritized reducing implicit bias in the justice system, specifically in police departments. Even US Supreme Court justice Anthony Kennedy suggested—in writing for the majority in the 2015 Inclusive Communities case—that implicit bias may be a factor in assessing disparate impact in housing discrimination cases.

But what is implicit bias? How does it affect people? And what can we do about it? The existence and pervasiveness of implicit bias also raises philosophical questions: am I responsible for my implicit biases? Should I be distrustful of myself because I am likely to be biased in some situations (for example, when grading student papers)?

This talk introduces the concept of implicit bias and covers the psychological measurement of “implicit attitudes,” evidence for the effects of implicit biases on most people’s judgment and behavior, and strategies anyone can adopt to become less biased. The focus will be on the effects of implicit bias in the justice system, including questions about responsibility for implicit bias and the relationship between implicit bias and explicit prejudice, particularly in the new Age of Trump.

As usual, we meet at 7:00 P.M. at the Grand Army Plaza branch of the Brooklyn Public Library.

Tell your friends/students/strangers! Bring a date! Bring someone with whom you disagree about racism and the police!

See you there, I hope!


Apr 27, 2016
7:00 pm
Event Categories:


Brooklyn Public Library, Info Commons Lab
10 Grand Army Plaza
Brooklyn, NY 11238 United States


Brooklyn Public Philosophers