David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
This thesis provides a detailed analysis of the dialectic of conscience within Hegel’s Philosophy of Right. It aims to show that Hegel provides a fundamental role for conscience within the state and, thus, that Hegel preserves the right to subjective freedom within ethical life. In doing so, it aims to unite divided opinion on the role of conscience within Hegel’s political philosophy and to further disarm the charge that Hegel’s state advocates repressive or authoritarian political structures. In order to pursue this argument, this thesis first examines the emergence of conscience within the morality section of the text. It presents the moral conscience as the fruition of subjective freedom; as possessing the right to produce its own convictions and determine for itself what is good. However, it then continues to highlight the necessarily formal nature of the moral conscience and claims that, because of this formality, the content of conscience is always contingent. As such, the moral conscience is always in danger of willing evil; and it is precisely this danger that necessitates the move into ethics. The moral conscience is sublated by the true, ethical conscience. This thesis presents its own reading of the Aufhebung from the moral conscience to the true conscience of ethical life, which it believes properly reflects the dialectical progression of freedom within the text. It argues that, during the process of Aufhebung, the essential moments of moral conscience are retained and only the negative aspects are lost. In particular, it claims that conscience’s right to produce its own convictions is preserved within ethical life, but that the contingency of conscience is not. As such, true conscience wills the good both in and for itself. This does not mean that true conscience cannot make mistakes. But it does entail that true conscience cannot put its own convictions beyond criticism. For this reason, this thesis also maintains that the formal conscience of morality, in its non-aufgehoben form, has no place within the ethical realm. This thesis locates true conscience’s function in the disparity between the actual and the existing state. It argues that, in recognising the rational principles inherent in society and by transforming the existing world to conform more faithfully to these principles, true conscience plays an essential role in keeping the state in line with its own, rational essence. However, it also maintains that this type of immanent critique extends only to reform, and not to not radical, social criticism. The thesis concludes by describing true conscience’s role in the legislative power
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library||
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Peter Godman (2009). Paradoxes of Conscience in the High Middle Ages: Abelard, Heloise, and the Archpoet. Cambridge University Press.
Mark C. Murphy (1997). The Conscience Principle. Journal of Philosophical Research 22:387-407.
William Lyons (2009). Conscience – an Essay in Moral Psychology. Philosophy 84 (4):477-494.
David Bosco (1986). Conscience As Court And Worm: Calvin And The Three Elements Of Conscience. Journal of Religious Ethics 14 (2):333-355.
Daniel P. Sulmasy (2008). What is Conscience and Why is Respect for It so Important? Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 29 (3):135-149.
Donovan Miyasaki (2010). Nietzsche Contra Freud on Bad Conscience. Nietzsche-Studien 39 (1):434-454.
John J. Hardt (2008). The Conscience Debate: Resources for Rapprochement From the Problem's Perceived Source. Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 29 (3):151-160.
Michael W. Hickson (2010). Conscientious Refusals Without Conscience. Philo 13 (2):167-184.
Ryan E. Lawrence & Farr A. Curlin (2007). Clash of Definitions: Controversies About Conscience in Medicine. American Journal of Bioethics 7 (12):10 – 14.
Edward Andrew & Peter Lindsay (2008). Are the Judgments of Conscience Unreasonable? Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 11 (2):235-254.
M. Ojakangas (2010). Conscience, the Remnant and the Witness: Genealogical Remarks on Giorgio Agamben's Ethics. Philosophy and Social Criticism 36 (6):697-717.
James Calvin Davis (2005). William Ames's Calvinist Ambiguity Over Freedom of Conscience. Journal of Religious Ethics 33 (2):333 - 355.
Wenyu Xie (2009). The Enlightenment: Conscience and Authority in Judgment. [REVIEW] Frontiers of Philosophy in China 4 (2):264-281.
Added to index2012-01-10
Total downloads10 ( #312,956 of 1,789,836 )
Recent downloads (6 months)5 ( #166,717 of 1,789,836 )
How can I increase my downloads?