Beyond Dignity and Difference

Maeve Cooke
University College Dublin
Revisiting Taylor's 1992 account of the politics of recognition, I argue that he is right to discern a strand in contemporary politics that goes beyond the demand for recognition of dignity. Against Taylor I contend that this is best understood as a concern not for recognition of difference but for the value of something that is not universally shared, such as a particular ethical conception, cultural tradition or religious belief and practice. Using the examples of three social movements I show the relevance of this for contemporary politics. My empirically based argument is supported normatively by a discussion of Hegel's critique of `morality as conscience' in his Phenomenology. Referring to Axel Honneth's theory of recognition I highlight the lack of attention to this kind of concern for recognition in contemporary political and social theory. I conclude by specifying the key features of the concept of recognition most appropriate for responding to it publicly under conditions of value-pluralism
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1177/1474885108096961
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 40,625
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Undignified Bioethics.Alasdair Cochrane - 2010 - Bioethics 24 (5):234-241.
Selbstachtung und Menschenwürde.Ralf Stoecker - 2004 - Studia Philosophica 63:107-120.
Criminalizing Behaviour to Protect Human Dignity.Tatjana Hörnle - 2012 - Criminal Law and Philosophy 6 (3):307-325.
Practical Dignity in Caring.L. H. Toiviainen & D. Seedhouse - 1998 - Nursing Ethics 5 (3):246-255.
Practical Dignity in Caring.L. Shotton & D. Seedhouse - 1998 - Nursing Ethics 5 (3):246-255.
Towards a Social Conception of Dignity.Carol V. A. Quinn - 2008 - International Journal of Applied Philosophy 22 (1):89-101.


Added to PP index

Total views
29 ( #281,107 of 2,242,336 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
2 ( #815,752 of 2,242,336 )

How can I increase my downloads?


Sorry, there are not enough data points to plot this chart.

My notes

Sign in to use this feature