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Right and recognition: criminal action and intersubjectivity in Hegel's early ethics

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This paper explores one aspect of the political in the early Hegel, that of criminal action and its relationship to the concept of recognition in the System of Ethical Life. While it is clear that in this work Hegel thinks that criminal action plays an important role in the transformation of simple ethical communities, it is not clear that, for Hegel, the formal character of crime in the struggle for recognition is anything but negative. I attempt to show how this role for crime leads Hegel to a legalistic conception of Right that has no solid connection with recognition as a social force.

Keywords: Crime; Criminal Action; Ethical Life; Family; Freedom; Honneth, Axel; Honour; Justice; Murder; Politicization; Punishment; Recognition; Revenge; Theft

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Dept. of Philosophy, St Louis University, Humanities Building, 3800 Lindell Blvd, St Louis, MO 63103, USA.. Email:deckerks@slu.edu

Publication date: January 1, 2001

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