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16. Friendship in Hegel and Its Interpretation in Theories of Recognition

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Chapter Summary

This chapter shows that there are two different, and radically heterogeneous, processes of recognition, of which Hegel investigates only the first one, which includes the interpersonal formation of self-consciousness or the constitution of the self. It shows that this process of recognition not only does not include the recognition of particular or individual differences, but also that it expressly excludes it. The chapter focuses on friendship as a kind of love. Since Hegel considers friendship as a kind of love in a comprehensive sense, as was widely the case in his time, what he says about love is valid ipso facto for friendship too. Unlike other kinds of love, especially marital love, friendship does not necessarily presuppose gender difference nor consanguinity; although gender difference and consanguinity are fully compatible with friendship.

Keywords: friendship; Hegel; love; theories of recognition



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