•  1201
    This working paper examines the notion of "immanent critique", a central methodological commitment of critical theories of society. In the first part, I distinguish immanent critique - a critique which reconstructs norms immanent in a social practice which point beyond the normative self-understanding of its members - from both external and internal critique and examine three questions that a theory of immanent critique has to answer (a social ontological, an epistemological and a justificatory …Read more
  •  816
    Institutional Power, Collective Acceptance, and Recognition
    In Heikki Ikäheimo & Arto Laitinen (eds.), Recognition and Social Ontology, Brill. pp. 349--372. 2011.
    The article defines the boundaries of social and institutional power clearly; it argues that all institutional power rests finally on the acceptance of sanctioning authority and thus on mutual recognition.
  •  706
    Indiscriminate mass surveillance and the public sphere
    Ethics and Information Technology 18 (1): 33-39. 2016.
    Recent disclosures suggest that many governments apply indiscriminate mass surveillance technologies that allow them to capture and store a massive amount of communications data belonging to citizens and non-citizens alike. This article argues that traditional liberal critiques of government surveillance that center on an individual right to privacy cannot completely capture the harm that is caused by such surveillance because they ignore its distinctive political dimension. As a complement to s…Read more
  •  675
    Habermas and the Project of Immanent Critique
    Constellations 20 (4): 533-552. 2013.
    According to Jürgen Habermas, his Theory of Communicative Action offers a new account of the normative foundations of critical theory. Habermas’ motivating insight is that neither a transcendental nor a metaphysical solution to the problem of normativity, nor a merely hermeneutic reconstruction of historically given norms, is sufficient to clarify the normative foundations of critical theory. In response to this insight, Habermas develops a novel account of normativity, which locates the normati…Read more
  •  548
    Verdinglichung als Pathologie zweiter Ordnung
    Deutsche Zeitschrift für Philosophie 59 (5): 731-746. 2011.
    Although the critique of reification is a core commitment of critical theories, there is no widely accepted account of its normative foundation. In Lukács’s original analysis, this foundation is provided by a strong concept of practice which is, however, not acceptable from a contemporary point of view. I argue that the systematic character of reification theory can only be upheld if this concept is replaced by a more intersubjective notion of normative practices. Reification can then be analyse…Read more
  •  439
    Collective Responsibility for Oppression
    Social Theory and Practice 43 (3): 473-501. 2017.
    Many contemporary forms of oppression are not primarily the result of formally organized collective action nor are they an unintended outcome of a combination of individual actions. This raises the question of collective responsibility. I argue that we can only determine who is responsible for oppression if we understand oppression as a matter of social practices that create obstacles for social change. This social practice view of oppression enables two insights: First, that there is an unprobl…Read more
  •  286
    Criticizing Social Reality from Within: Haslanger on Race, Gender, and Ideology
    Krisis: Journal for Contemporary Philosophy (1): 5-12. 2014.
    This paper critically evaluates the semantic externalist conception of Race and Gender concepts put forward in Sally Haslanger's 2012 essay collection "Resisting Reality". I argue that her endorsement of "objective type externalism" limits the options for critique compared to social externalist approaches.
  •  271
    Fundamental Hope and Practical Identity
    Philosophical Papers 46 (3). 2017.
    This article considers the question ‘What makes hope rational?’ We take Adrienne Martin’s recent incorporation analysis of hope as representative of a tradition that views the rationality of hope as a matter of instrumental reasons. Against this tradition, we argue that an important subset of hope, ‘fundamental hope’, is not governed by instrumental rationality. Rather, people have reason to endorse or reject such hope in virtue of the contribution of the relevant attitudes to the integrity of t…Read more
  •  132
    Anerkennung, Subjektivität und Gesellschaftskritik
    Deutsche Zeitschrift für Philosophie 62 (2): 239-259. 2014.
    The Hegelian insight that subjectivity depends on recognition has been taken up by two competing traditions: Post-Hegelian theories (Honneth, Brandom) take recognition to be a precondition for a critical stance of subjects towards society. In contrast, theories of subjection (Althusser, Butler) take the dependency of subjects on subordinating relations of recognition as undermining their capacity for critique. I argue that this worry has not been taken seriously enough by the post-Hegelian tradi…Read more
  •  99
    Privacy in Public: A Democratic Defense
    Moral Philosophy and Politics 7 (1): 73-96. 2020.
    Traditional arguments for privacy in public suggest that intentionally public activities, such as political speech, do not deserve privacy protection. In this article, I develop a new argument for the view that surveillance of intentionally public activities should be limited to protect the specific good that this context provides, namely democratic legitimacy. Combining insights from Helen Nissenbaum’s contextualism and Jürgen Habermas’s theory of the public sphere, I argue that strategic surve…Read more
  •  69
    Practices, Norms and Recognition
    Human Affairs 17 (1): 10-21. 2007.
    The problem of the social foundations of normativity can be illuminated by discussing the narrower question whether rule-following is necessarily a social matter. The problems with individualistic theories of rule-following seem to make such a conclusion unavoidable. Social theories of rule-following, however, seem to only push back one level the dilemma of having to choose either an infinite regress of interpretations or a collapse into non-normative descriptions. The most plausible of these mo…Read more
  •  65
    Analytic philosophy and the return of Hegelian thought (review)
    Critical Horizons 9 (1): 109-112. 2008.
    A review of Paul Reddings book "Analytic philosophy and the return of Hegelian thought".
  •  59
    Recognition and Ambivalence: Judith Butler, Axel Honneth, and Beyond (edited book)
    with Heikki Ikäheimo and Kristina Lepold
    Columbia University Press. forthcoming.
    Recognition is one of the most debated concepts in contemporary social and political thought. Its proponents, such as Axel Honneth, hold that to be recognized by others is a basic human need that is central to forming an identity, and the denial of recognition deprives individuals and communities of something essential for their flourishing. Yet critics including Judith Butler have questioned whether recognition is implicated in structures of domination, arguing that the desire to be recognized …Read more
  •  47
    Critical theories often express scepticism towards the idea that social critique should draw on general normative principles, seeing such principles as bound to dominant conceptual frameworks. However, even the models of immanent critique developed in the Frankfurt School tradition seem to privilege principles over particular moral experiences. Discussing the place that particular moral experience has in the models of Honneth, Ferrara and Adorno, the article argues that experience can play an im…Read more
  •  40
    This chapter discusses a fundamental ambivalence in Marx's use of the term "ideology". On the one hand, he employs a cognitivist critique of ideologies, condemning them in virtue of their epistemic or cognitive insufficiencies. On the other hand, what he so describes as false is a specific second-order belief: The belief that the cognitive is independent from material practice. If this belief is false, however, a merely epistemic critique of ideologies must miss its very point. The chapter argue…Read more
  •  40
    The Conditions of Collectivity: Joint Commitment and the Shared Norms of Membership
    In Anita Konzelmann Ziv & Hans Bernhard Schmid (eds.), Institutions, Emotions, and Group Agents, Springer. pp. 229-244. 2014.
    Collective intentionality is one of the most fundamental notions in social ontology. However, it is often thought to refer to a capacity which does not presuppose the existence of any other social facts. This chapter critically examines this view from the perspective of one specific theory of collective intentionality, the theory of Margaret Gilbert. On the basis of Gilbert’s arguments, the chapter claims that collective intentionality is a highly contingent achievement of complex social practic…Read more
  •  39
    Georg [György] Lukács
    Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 2013.
    Georg (György) Lukács (1885–1971) was a literary theorist and philosopher who is widely viewed as one of the founders of “Western Marxism”. Lukács is best known for his pre-World War II writings in literary theory, aesthetic theory and Marxist philosophy. Today, his most widely read works are the Theory of the Novel of 1916 and History and Class Consciousness of 1923. In History and Class Consciousness, Lukács laid out a wide-ranging critique of the phenomenon of “reification” in capitalism and …Read more
  •  34
    Schwerpunkt: Verdinglichung
    with Rahel Jaeggi
    Deutsche Zeitschrift für Philosophie 59 (5): 697-700. 2011.
  •  34
    Sharing the Background
    In Michael Schmitz, Beatrice Kobow & Hans Bernhard Schmid (eds.), The Background of Social Reality, Springer. pp. 127--146. 2013.
    In regard to the explanation of actions that are governed by institutional rules, John R. Searle introduces the notion of a mental “background” that is supposed to explain how persons can acquire the capacity of following such rules. I argue that Searle’s internalism about the mind and the resulting poverty of his conception of the background keep him from putting forward a convincing explanation of the normative features of institutional action. Drawing on competing conceptions of the backgroun…Read more
  •  31
    with Claudia Bloeser
    Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 2017.
  •  30
    This book discusses the concept of immanent critique, i. e. whether there is a form of critique which neither just applies empirically accepted standards nor independently justified norms but rather reconstructs norms which are immanent to social practices. It surveys both political theories of criticism (Walzer, Taylor, MacIntyre) and contemporary critical theories (Habermas, Honneth) for how they describe such forms of critique and develops a new model of immanent critique. For this purpose, i…Read more
  •  27
    Lukács and the Frankfurt School
    In Peter E. Gordon, Espen Hammer & Axel Honneth (eds.), The Routledge Companion to the Frankfurt School, Routledge. pp. 237-250. 2018.
    The work of the Hungarian Marxist Georg Lukács is a constant source of controversy in the history of the Frankfurt School. All leading thinkers of that theoretical tradition have struggled with Lukács’s theory. On the one hand, it was an inspiration for their attempts to come to terms with the oppressive features of capitalist modernity. On the other hand, both its political conclusions and Lukács’s actual philosophical submission to Soviet orthodoxy seemed to show that his theoretical framework…Read more
  •  19
    In Michael Quante (ed.), Marx-Handbuch, J.b. Metzler. pp. 238-253. 2016.
  •  19
    The location of critique
    Philosophy and Social Criticism 43 (3): 351-352. 2017.
  •  18
    with Kristina Lepold
    Deutsche Zeitschrift für Philosophie 62 (2): 231-238. 2014.
    Name der Zeitschrift: Deutsche Zeitschrift für Philosophie Jahrgang: 62 Heft: 2 Seiten: 231-238.