Intellectual cover

Intellectual cover is a usually negative term for sophisticated arguments provided by members of the intelligentsia to bolster a particular viewpoint, and thereby help it gain respectability. Usually the viewpoint is one that a supporter (e.g. a politician) leaned toward anyway, but needed arguments to help him justify to others. The implication is that the supporter is not really interested in the truth but is just looking for an excuse to hold a certain position. For instance, it has been alleged that free market economics serve as intellectual cover for a "predator state."[1] Some researchers into the characteristics of minorities have been accused of providing intellectual cover for bigots.[2] New Testament scholar Gerhard Kittel was accused of offering intellectual cover to the Nazis' genocidal policy.[3]

See also


  2. Nelson, Todd D. Handbook of prejudice, stereotyping, and discrimination.
  3. Levenson, Alan T. (Fall 2009), The Mismeasure of the Jew, 99, Jewish Quarterly Review, ISSN 1553-0604
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