Columbia University professor Axel Honneth directs the Institute for Social Research in Frankfurt. Conflicts expressing demands of parts of the population indicate issues that require addressing and contribute to progress. Most are driven by a search for inclusion and recognition.
Honneth argues that, to be free and participate in society, people need to be recognized as such. Dimensions include recognition as human beings with particular needs; with equal social standing; and as having competencies and abilities contributing to social reproduction.
Honneth outlines the misunderstanding of freedom in modern society. The "negative" freedom of dissociating from others is produced by the market and an over-legalization that breaks community bonds. Social freedom occurs in cooperation and association with others and includes political freedom.
Honneth discusses the idea that society reflects the organization of reason. Capitalism tends to reduce our understanding of reason, freedom, and social progress. Frankfurt School diverges from other critical theory understandings.
Credits: Critical Thinkers - Axel Honneth
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Axel Honneth is one of the most important German thinkers of today. Author of several books, he is the director of the Institute for Social Research of Frankfurt, as well as a professor at Columbia University. In his apartment in New York, he explains some of his fundamental concepts to understand the contemporary world.
Length: 28 minutes
Copyright date: ©2017
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