The Critical Theory of Axel Honneth provides a comprehensive study of the work of Axel Honneth, tracing the theoretical trajectory from his earliest writings on philosophical anthropology to the development of a theory of recognition. The book argues that Honneth’s early work provides important insights for the reconstruction of the normative project of critical theory and the articulation of a conceptual framework for analyzing social relations of power and domination. Danielle Petherbridge contends, however, that these aims are not fully realized in Honneth’s more mature project and that central insights recede as his project develops. Petherbridge seeks to demonstrate that the basis for an alternative theory of intersubjectivity that can account for both an adequate theory of power and normative forms of subject-formation can be immanently reconstructed from within Honneth’s own work. By contextualizing Honneth’s project in relation to its theoretical influences, The Critical Theory of Axel Honneth provides a critical study and excellent entry point that will be essential reading for both students and scholars who work in the areas of European philosophy, critical theory, social and political philosophy, or social and political theory.
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About the Author
Danielle Petherbridge is an Irish Research Council research fellow in the school of philosophy at University College Dublin. She is editor of Axel Honneth: Critical Essays, (2011), co-editor of Recognition, Work, Politics: New Direction in French Critical Theory, (2007); Contemporary Perspectives in Critical and Social Philosophy, (2004); and coordinating editor of the journal Critical Horizons: A Journal of Philosophy and Social Theory.
Table of ContentsIntroduction
Part 1: Honneth’s Reconstruction of Critical Theory
Chapter 1: The Intersubjective Grounds of Critique: From Mutual Understanding to Mutual Recognition
Chapter 2: Reading Marx after habermas
Part 2: Unfinished Studies on a Theory of Power
Chapter 3: The Social as a Field of Struggle: Foucault’s Action-Theoretic View
Chapter 4: Regimes of Discipline: Foucault’s Domination-Theoretic View
Chapter 5: Intersubjectivity in the Condition of Power: Re-reading Foucault
Part 3: Honneth’s Intersubjectivist Reading of Hegel
Chapter 6: From the Contingency of Struggle to the Primacy of Recognition
Chapter 7: The Normative Ground of Conflict and Sociality
Part 4: Intersubjective Dependency and Socialization: Mead and Winnicott
Chapter 8: Practical Intersubjectivity and Sociality in Mead
Chapter 9: Intersubjectivity or Primary Affectivity? Honneth’s Reading of Winnicott
Part 5: Anthropology, Recognition & Critique
Chapter 10: A Critical Theory of Recognition: Anthropological, Historical or Ontological Justification?
Chapter 11: The Power of Critique