•  2771
    Introduction : Hegel and contemporary philosophy of action
    In Arto Laitinen & Constantine Sandis (eds.), Hegel on Action, Palgrave-macmillan. 2010.
    The aim of this book is to provide an in-depth account of Hegel’s writings on human action as they relate to contemporary concerns in the hope that it will encourage fruitful dialogue between Hegel scholars and those working in the philosophy of action. During the past two decades, preliminary steps towards such a dialogue were taken, but many paths remain uncharted. The book thus serves as both a summative document of past interaction and a promissory note of things to come. We begin this intro…Read more
  •  1970
    Sorting Out Aspects of Personhood
    Journal of Consciousness Studies 14 (5-6): 248-270. 2007.
    This paper examines how three central aspects of personhood — the capacities of individuals, their normative status, and the social aspect of being recognized — are related, and how personhood depends on them. The paper defends first of all a ‘basic view’that while actual recognition is among the constitutive elements of full personhood, it is the individual capacities (and not full personhood) which ground the basic moral and normative demands concerning treatment of persons. Actual recognition…Read more
  •  1365
    Charles Taylor and Paul Ricoeur on Self-Interpretations and Narrative Identity
    In Rauno Huttunen, Hannu Heikkinen & Leena Syrjälä (eds.), Narrative Research. Voices of Teachers and Philosophers, Sophi. pp. 57-71. 2002.
    In this chapter I discuss Charles Taylor's and Paul Ricoeur's theories of narrative identity and narratives as a central form of self-interpretation. Both Taylor and Ricoeur think that self-identity is a matter of culturally and socially mediated self-definitions, which are practically relevant for one's orientation in life. First, I will go through various characterisations that Ricoeur gives of his theory, and try to show to what extent they also apply to Taylor's theory. Then, I will analyse …Read more
  •  1098
    A Critique of Charles Taylor's Notions of “Moral Sources” and “Constitutive Goods”
    In Jussi Kotkavirta & Michael Quante (eds.), Moral Realism, Acta Philosophica Fennica. pp. 73-104. 2004.
    In this paper I argue that moral realism does not, pace Charles Taylor, need “moral sources” or “constitutive goods”, and adding these concepts distorts the basic insights of what can be called “cultural” moral realism.1 Yet the ideas of “moral topography” or “moral space” as well as the idea of “ontological background pictures” are valid, if separated from those notions. What does Taylor mean by these notions?
  •  1057
    Analyzing Recognition: Identification, Acknowledgement and Recognitive Attitudes Towards Persons
    In Bert van den Brink & David Owen (eds.), Recognition and Power, Cambridge University Press. pp. 33-56. 2007.
    There is today a wide consensus that ‘recognition’ is something that we need a clear grasp of in order to understand the dynamics of political struggles, and, perhaps the constitution and dynamics of social reality more generally. Yet, the discussions on ‘recognition’ have so far often been conceptually rather inexplicit, in the sense that the very key concepts have remained largely unexplicated or undefined. Since the English word ‘recognition’ is far from unambiguous, it is possible, and to ou…Read more
  •  1019
    Charles Taylor and Nicholas H. Smith on Human Constants and Transcendental Arguments. A Review (review)
    SATS: Northern European Journal of Philosophy 4 (2): 191-201. 2003.
    In the introduction to his Philosophical Papers 1&2 Charles Taylor assures us that his work, while encompassing a range of issues, follows a single, tightly knit agenda. He claims that the central questions concern "philosophical anthropology". Taylor's work on these questions has been presented piecemeal, in the form of articles and papers, and the student has had to imagine what a systematic monograph by Taylor on philosophical anthropology would look like. Neither Hegel, Sources of the Self, …Read more
  •  919
    Interpersonal Recognition and Responsiveness to Relevant Differences
    Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 9 (1): 47-70. 2006.
    This essay defends a three-dimensional response-model theory of recognition of persons, and discusses the related phenomenon of recognition of reasons, values and principles. The theory is three-dimensional in endorsing recognition of the equality of persons and two kinds of relevant differences: merits and special relationships. It defends a ‘response-model’ which holds that adequacy of recognition of persons is a matter of adequate responsiveness to situation-specific reasons and requirements.…Read more
  •  864
    Today and tomorrow: Review of Charles Taylor by Ruth Abbey (review)
    Radical Philosophy 30 108. 2001.
    The Philosophy Now series promises to combine rigorous analysis with authoritative expositions. Ruth Abbey’s book lives up to this demand by being a clear, reliable and more than up-to-date introduction to Charles Taylor ’s philosophy. Although it is an introductory book, the amount of footnotes and references ought to please those who want to study the original texts more closely. Abbey’s book is structured thematically: morality, selfhood, politics and epistemology get 50 pages each. The focus…Read more
  •  847
    Seen to be done: The roots and fruits of public equality (review)
    Res Publica 16 (1): 83-88. 2010.
    What is the ethical basis for democracy? What reasons do we have to go along with democratic decisions even when we disagree with them? When can we justly ignore democratic decisions? These three questions are intimately connected: understanding what is ultimately important about democracy helps us to understand the authority of democratic decisions over our personal views, and the limits of such authority. Thomas Christiano’s ambitious new book, The Constitution of Equality, aims to provide suc…Read more
  •  807
    Interpersonal recognition: A response to value or a precondition of personhood?
    Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 45 (4). 2002.
    This article suggests first that the concept of interpersonal recognition be understood in a multidimensional (as opposed to one-dimensional), practical (as opposed to symbolic), and strict (as opposed to broad) way. Second, it is argued that due recognition be seen as a reason-governed response to evaluative features, rather than all normativity and reasons being seen as generated by recognition. This can be called a response-model, or, more precisely, a value-based model of due recognition. A …Read more
  •  698
    Strong Evaluations and Personal Identity
    In Christian Kanzian & et al (eds.), Persons: An Interdisciplinary Approach, Alws Society. pp. 127-9. 2002.
    This paper examines Charles Taylor’s claim that personal identity is a matter of strong evaluations. Strong evaluations are in this paper analyzed as stable preferences, which are strongly identified with and which are based on qualitative distinctions concerning the non-instrumental value of options. In discussing the role of strong evaluations in personal identity, the focus is on "self-identity", not on the criteria of personhood or on the logical relation of identity. Two senses of self-iden…Read more
  •  389
    Recognition and Social Ontology (edited book)
    with Heikki Ikaheimo and Arto Laitinen
    Brill. 2011.
    This unique collection examines the connections between two complementary approaches to philosophical social theory: Hegel-inspired theories of recognition, and analytical social ontology.
  •  352
    Dimensions of personhood
    with Heikki Ikäheimo
    Journal of Consciousness Studies 14 (5-6): 6-16. 2007.
    A substantial article-length introduction to the theme of personhood.
  •  173
    Paul Ricoeur's Surprising Take on Recognition
    Études Ricoeuriennes / Ricoeur Studies 2 (1): 35-50. 2011.
    This essay examines Paul Ricœur’s views on recognition in his book The Course of Recognition . It highlights those aspects that are in some sense surprising, in relation to his previous publications and the general debates on Hegelian Anerkennung and the politics of recognition. After an overview of Ricœur’s book, the paper examines the meaning of “recognition” in Ricœur’s own proposal, in the dictionaries Ricœur uses, and in the contemporary debates. Then it takes a closer look at the ideas of …Read more
  •  146
    Social Equality, Recognition, and Preconditions of Good Life
    In Michael Fine, Paul Henman & Nicholas Smith (eds.), Social Inequality Today, . 2003.
    In this paper I analyze interpersonal and institutional recognition and discuss the relation of different types of recognition to various principles of social justice (egalitarianism, meritarianism, legitimate favouritism, principles of need and free exchange). Further, I try to characterize contours of good autonomous life, and ask what kind of preconditions it has. I will distinguish between five kinds of preconditions: psychological, material, cultural, intersubjective and institutional. Afte…Read more
  •  115
    Charles Taylor, a secular age (review)
    Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 13 (3): 353-355. 2010.
    Charles Taylor has written three big books on the self-understandings of modern age andmodern individuals. Hegel (1975) focused on one towering figure, and held that Hegel ’ saspirations to overcome modern dualisms are still ours, but Hegelian philosophicalspeculation is not the way to do it. Sources of the Self (1989) ran the intellectual historyfrom peak to peak, stressing the continuous presence of modern tensions and cross- pressures between Enlightenment and Romanticism. A Secular Age (2…Read more
  •  114
    Broader contexts of non-domination: Pettit and Hegel on freedom and recognition
    Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 18 (4): 390-406. 2015.
    This study compares Philip Pettit’s account of freedom to Hegelian accounts. Both share the key insight that characterizes the tradition of republicanism from the Ancients to Rousseau: to be subordinated to the will of particular others is to be unfree. They both also hold that relations to others, relations of recognition, are in various ways directly constitutive of freedom, and in different ways enabling conditions of freedom. The republican ideal of non-domination can thus be fruitfully unde…Read more
  •  114
    Hegel and Respect for Persons
    In Elena Irrera & Giovanni Giorgini (eds.), The Roots of Respect: A Historic-Philosophical Itinerary, De Gruyter. pp. 171-186. 2017.
    This essay discusses Hegel’s theory of “abstract” respect for “abstract” personhood and its relation to the fuller, concrete account of human personhood. Hegel defines (abstract) personhood as an abstract, formal category with the help of his account of free will. For Hegel, personhood is defined in terms of powers, relations to self and to others. After analyzing what according to the first part of Philosophy of Right it is to (abstractly) respect someone as a person, the essay discusses the im…Read more
  •  104
    Review of Axel Honneth, Freedom's Right (review)
    Review of Politics 77 (2): 327-330. 2015.
    Freedom’s just another word for nothin’ left to lose? Not for Axel Honneth,whose Hegelian reconstruction sees freedom as the central, even sole, driving force of Western modernity. Other apparently central values are mere modifications of freedom. Nothin’ don’t mean nothin’ if it ain’t free. In his deliberately grand narrative, Honneth follows Hegel's Philosophy of Right in developing an account of social justice by means of an analysis of society. The end result is an outline of society in term…Read more
  •  104
    Recognition, Needs and Wrongness
    European Journal of Political Theory 8 (1): 13-30. 2009.
    `Due recognition is a vital human need', argues Charles Taylor. In this article I explore this oft-quoted claim from two complementary and equally appealing perspectives. The bottom—up approach is constructed around Axel Honneth's theory of recognition, and the top—down approach is exemplified by T. M. Scanlon's brief remarks about mutual recognition. The former can be summed up in the slogan `wronging by misrecognizing', the latter in the slogan `misrecognizing by wronging'. Together they provi…Read more
  •  103
    Against representations with two directions of fit
    Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 13 (1): 179-199. 2014.
    The idea that there are representations with a double direction of fit has acquired a pride of place in contemporary debates on the ontology of institutions. This paper will argue against the very idea of anything at all having both directions of fit. There is a simple problem which has thus far gone unnoticed. The suggestion that there are representations with both directions of fit amounts to a suggestion that, in cases of discrepancy between a representation and the world, both should change—…Read more
  •  86
    Misrecognition, Misrecognition, and Fallibility
    Res Publica 18 (1): 25-38. 2012.
    Misrecognition from other individuals and social institutions is by its dynamic or ‘logic’ such that it can lead to distorted relations-to-self, such as self-hatred, and can truncate the development of the central capabilities of persons. Thus it is worth trying to shed light on how mis recognition differs from adequate recognition, and on how mis recognition might differ from other kinds of mistreatment and disregard. This paper suggests that mis recognition (including nonrecognition) is a matt…Read more
  •  78
    On Identity, Alienation and Consequences of September 11th. An Interview with Charles Taylor
    with Hartmut Rosa
    In Arto Laitinen & Nicholas H. Smith (eds.), Perspectives on the Philosophy of Charles Taylor, Acta Philosophica Fennica. pp. 165-195. 2002.
    HR/AL: Professor Taylor, what are you working on these days? CT: Well, several things. One of the things I am working on is something I was lecturing this fall at the New School University, and that I have called ‘modern social imaginaries’. It is an attempt to understand western modernity in terms of the different ways in which people imagine their social existence. These imaginaries are a condition for new kinds of practices that are characteristic of modernity. This research is an internal pa…Read more
  •  70
    Solidarity: Theory and Practice. An Introduction
    with Anne Birgitta Pessi
    In Arto Laitinen & Anne Birgitta Pessi (eds.), Solidarity: Theory and Practice, Lexington Books. pp. 1-29. 2014.
    This is an introduction to a collection of essays on solidarity. It maps the most important meanings of solidarity at the micro- and macrolevels.
  •  65
    Practices as ‘actual’ sources of goodness of actions
    Philosophy and Public Issues - Filosofia E Questioni Pubbliche (Supplementary Volume): 55-68. 2015.
    Chapters Ten and Eleven in Michael Thompson’s Life and Action discuss practices and dispositions as sources of individual actions, and as sources of the goodness of the individual actions. In the essay, I will first discuss the nature of actuality, then the distinction between acting on a first-order consideration and a second-order consideration, and the possibly related distinction between expressing a practice and merely simulating it, and then I turn to varieties of goodness.
  •  62
    Taylor on Solidarity
    with Nicholas H. Smith
    Thesis Eleven 99 (1): 48-70. 2009.
    After characterizing Taylor’s general approach to the problems of solidarity, we distinguish and reconstruct three contexts of solidarity in which this approach is developed: the civic, the socio-economic, and the moral. We argue that Taylor’s distinctive move in each of these contexts of solidarity is to claim that the relationship at stake poses normatively justified demands, which are motivationally demanding, but insufficiently motivating on their own. On Taylor’s conception, we need some un…Read more
  •  55
    "The Nordic welfare states have arguably been successful in terms of social solidarity – although the heavily institutional and state-driven solutions as opposed to community- or family-based ones in various issues from child to elderly care may have made it seem as mere ‘quasi-solidarity’ in comparison to more communitarian ideals. This essay approaches such social solidarity in terms of Axel Honneth’s recognition-theoretical framework – arguing that there’s much more potential in Honnethian id…Read more
  •  50
    Issues of personal identity are relevant in biomedical ethics, but in what way? The mainclaim that structures Quante’s book is that the debates about bioethics and medical ethicshave not been sufficiently clear about the different meanings of ‘personal identity’. Hedistinguishes four questions: 1)conditions of personhood (what properties and capacitiesmust a thing have to be a person: consciousness? self-consciousness? consciousness of timeand one’s persistence in time? rationality? capacity to …Read more
  •  45
    Recognition and Social Ontology: An Introduction
    with Heikki Ikäheimo and Arto Laitinen
    In Heikki Ikäheimo & Arto Laitinen (eds.), Recognition and Social Ontology, Brill. pp. 1-24. 2011.
    This is an introduction to a collection on social ontology and mutual recognition.