Heteronomous citizenship: Civic virtue and the chains of autonomy

Educational Philosophy and Theory 42 (1):73-93 (2010)
Abstract
In this article, I distinguish personal autonomy from heteronomy, and consider whether autonomy provides a suitable basis for liberalism. I argue that liberal government should not promote autonomy in all its citizens, on the grounds that not all members of liberal democracies require autonomy for a good life. I then outline an alternative option that I call a liberalism of conscience, describing how it better respects heteronomous citizens. I subsequently clarify how a liberalism of conscience is different than, and superior to, autonomy-based versions of liberalism.
Keywords conscience  civic virtue  heteronomy  education  liberalism  autonomy
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    S. I. Benn (1975). Freedom, Autonomy and the Concept of a Person. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 76:109 - 130.
    S. I. Benn (1985). Wickedness. Ethics 95 (4):795-810.

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