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ReificationA New Look At An Old Idea$
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Axel Honneth

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780195320466

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195320466.001.0001

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The Slippery Middle

The Slippery Middle

(p.131) The Slippery Middle

Jonathan Lear

Oxford University Press

In this chapter, the author explains why he is not entirely convinced about Honneth's assertion by pointing out the slippery middle of the argument. The three fundamental terms in Honneth's rethinking—care, recognition, and reification—are seemingly interrelated and this challenges the validity of the concept. One might therefore find himself or herself in confusion because of the ambiguity of “reification” and “recognition”; one may come up with conclusions that seem more valid and stronger that the given evidence. Although Honneth was able to address several different theories, all of which have certain conditions that may be historical or entail psychological development,there are other such conditions that are deemed necessary.

Keywords:   Honneth, care, recognition, reification, ambiguity, conditions, slippery middle

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