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Ewan Swift

Philosophy, University of Nottingham

Thesis title:

Microaggressions and Moral Responsibility

Microaggressions are broadly understood to be verbal, nonverbal, and environmental slights which communicate negative messages towards marginalised individuals. Although seemingly subtle and innocuous, when microaggressions are frequently experienced by marginalised people, they can cause a range of significant harms that help sustain structures of oppression. 

Nevertheless, most microaggressions are committed unintentionally by people who aren’t aware of the messages they communicate and the harms they cause. This raises questions around responsibility and how we ought to respond to the harms of microaggressions.

My PhD research explores the moral and political dimensions of microaggressions, how they challenge the ways that we conceptualise responsibility and responses to harm, and how we can respond to them on an interpersonal and structural level.



Research Area

  • Ethics
  • Philosophy