The recognition of rights in everyday life

Journal of Social Philosophy 18 (3):32-42 (1987)
Gewirth has argued that rights are justified by their role in the “generic features” of action. Simply by virtue of being a purposive agent capable of voluntary action, one must accept the logic that all persons with such characteristics have certain moral rights. But the language of rights theories does not deal with the process by which rights are acknowledged. How do we go about recognizing those characteristics of human life that underlie the logic Gewirth claims is necessary? By what process do I recognize, for example, your “right” to be told the truth? Acknowledging someone else's right involves two elements: a recognition of the content of the right and a recognition of the binding power of the right which is experienced by the agent as a sense of obligation. Analyzing the process by which these two factors are recognized and examining the foundation for that process will clarify some of the assumptions utilized in rights theories
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1111/j.1467-9833.1987.tb00142.x
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: 36,519
External links

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.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles


Added to PP index

Total downloads
2 ( #959,511 of 2,301,533 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature