Siding With Freedom: Towards A Prescriptive Hegelianism

Critical Horizons 12 (1):49-69 (2011)
  Copy   BIBTEX


My goal in this essay is to demonstrate the continuing relevance of Hegel’s theory of right for contemporary emancipatory politics. Specifically, my contention is that Hegel’s Philosophy of Right can and should be read as defending the possibility of principled, decisive side-taking in political struggles. By revisiting Hegel’s Philosophy of Right, I seek to demonstrate four interconnected theses: that the will’s freedom is both a) the fundamental principle upon which genuinely political change can be grounded, and b) essentially external to, or subtractable from, any and all social alignments; but is nonetheless c) necessarily actualized in specifically political institutions, and finally d) only truly actualized through emancipatory reforms of such institutions. In combination, these four theses demonstrate that politics is the principled, decisive and emancipatory reform of existent political institutions through historically determined political movements. Having established these basic theses, I will examine how the philosophy and politics of ‘prescriptive reform’ operates in practice



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 91,349

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Hegel's Standards of Political Legitimacy.Kenneth Westphal - 2002 - Jahrbuch für Recht Und Ethik/Annual Review of Law and Ethics 10:307-320.
External Freedom in Kant’s Rechtslehre: Political, Metaphysical.Jennifer K. Uleman - 2004 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 68 (3):578–601.
Hegel's idea of freedom.Alan Patten - 1999 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Hegel's critique of liberalism: rights in context.Steven B. Smith - 1989 - Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
The politics of John Dewey.Gary Bullert - 1983 - Buffalo, N.Y.: Prometheus Books.
Friedrich Nietzsche and Political Alternativity.Endre Kiss - 2006 - The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy 2:59-63.


Added to PP

33 (#472,429)

6 months
4 (#790,687)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Jim Vernon
York University

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

References found in this work

Contingency, Irony, and Solidarity.Richard Rorty - 1989 - New York: Cambridge University Press.
Elements of the philosophy of right.Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel - 1991 - New York: Cambridge University Press. Edited by Allen W. Wood & Hugh Barr Nisbet.
Contingency, Irony, and Solidarity.Richard Rorty - 1989 - The Personalist Forum 5 (2):149-152.
Hegel.Charles Taylor (ed.) - 1975 - New York: Cambridge University Press.

View all 40 references / Add more references