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Recognition and social freedom / Paddy McQueen

European Journal of Political Theory, Start page: 147488511987185

Swansea University Author: Paddy McQueen

Abstract

In this paper I develop an account of social freedom grounded in intersubjective recognition, which I term the “normative authorisation” account. According to this model, a person enjoys social freedom if she is recognised as a discursive equal who can engage in justificatory dialogue with other soc...

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Published in: European Journal of Political Theory
ISSN: 1474-8851 1741-2730
Published: 2019
Online Access: Check full text

URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa52051
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Abstract: In this paper I develop an account of social freedom grounded in intersubjective recognition, which I term the “normative authorisation” account. According to this model, a person enjoys social freedom if she is recognised as a discursive equal who can engage in justificatory dialogue with other social agents about the appropriateness of her reasons for action. I contrast this with Axel Honneth’s theory of social freedom, which I label the “self-realisation” account. Within this model, the affirmative recognition of others is required in order to achieve a positive relation-to-self and hence freedom. I highlight several issues with this account, which challenge the relationship Honneth draws between social recognition and freedom. I demonstrate that the normative authorisation account avoids these problems. I also show how it captures some basic features of our everyday, normative interactions. Finally, I suggest that the account fits well with recent work on epistemic injustice. Specifically, it shows that establishing the social conditions of freedom requires ensuring epistemically-just social relations. In sum, the normative authorisation account is an explanatorily powerful, inclusive theory of social freedom that fits well with wider accounts of justice and freedom. It represents the most promising way of construing social freedom in terms of interpersonal recognition.
Keywords: Axel Honneth; recognition; relational autonomy; Robert Pippin; social freedom
College: College of Arts and Humanities
Start Page: 147488511987185