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On the assumption of self-reflective subjectivity / Christoforos Bouzanis

History of the Human Sciences

Swansea University Author: Christoforos Bouzanis

DOI (Published version): 10.1177/09526951211032895

Abstract

Contemporary social theory has consistently emphasized habitual action, rule-following and role-performing as key aspects of social life, yet the challenge remains of combining these aspects with the omnipresent phenomenon of self-reflective conduct. This article attempts to tackle this challenge by...

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Published in: History of the Human Sciences
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URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa57244
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Abstract: Contemporary social theory has consistently emphasized habitual action, rule-following and role-performing as key aspects of social life, yet the challenge remains of combining these aspects with the omnipresent phenomenon of self-reflective conduct. This article attempts to tackle this challenge by proposing useful distinctions which can facilitate further interdisciplinary research on self-reflection. To this end, I have argued that we need a more sophisticated set of distinctions and categories in our understanding of habitual action. The analysis casts light on the idea that our contemporary social theories of self-reflection are not consistent with everyday notions of agential knowledgeability and accountability, and this conclusion indicates the need to re-conceptualize discourse and subjectivity in non-eliminative terms. Ultimately, the assumption of self-reflective subjectivity turns out to be a theoretical necessity for the conceptualization of discursive participation and democratic choice.
Keywords: human agency, intentionality, self-reflection, social theory, subjectivity
College: School of Management