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4. From Autonomy to Recognition

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Chapter Summary

The Kant-Rousseau autonomy criterion of demarcation of the normative tells us something about normative force, that is, about the nature of the bindingness or validity of the discursive commitments undertaken in judging or acting intentionally. That force, it tells us, is attitude-dependent. It is important to realize that such an approach can only work if it is paired with an account of the contents that normative force is invested in that construes those contents as attitude-independent. For Hegel, social substance is synthesized by reciprocal recognition. It is articulated into individual recognizing and recognized selves, which are subjects of normative statuses of commitment, authority, and responsibility, statuses instituted collectively by those recognitive attitudes. Kant's response is to develop and extend the Enlightenment commitment to the attitude dependence of normative statuses in the form of his autonomy model.

Keywords: Hegel; Kant-Rousseau autonomy criterion; Kantian autonomy model



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