Autonomy

Autonomy

Autonomy in Moral and Political Philosophy.

    First published Mon Jul 28, 2003; substantive revision Wed Aug 27, 2003

Individual autonomy is an idea that is generally understood to refer to the capacity to be one's own person, to live one's life according to reasons and motives that are taken as one's own and not the product of manipulative or distorting external forces. It is a central value in the Kantian tradition of moral philosophy but it is also given fundamental status in John Stuart Mill's version of utilitarian liberalism (Kant 1785/1983, Mill 1859/1975, ch. III). Examination of the concept of autonomy also figures centrally in debates over education policy, biomedical ethics, various legal freedoms and rights (such as freedom of speech and the right to privacy), as well as moral and political theory more broadly. In the realm of moral theory, seeing autonomy as a central value can be contrasted with alternative frameworks such an ethic of care, utilitarianism of some kinds, and an ethic of virtue. In all such contexts the concept of autonomy is the focus of much controversy and debate, disputes which focus attention on the fundamentals of moral and political philosophy and the Enlightenment conception of the person more generally.

Autonomy and self-determination 

 

by Jaime Martínez Luna    <tioyim@yahoo.com.mx>

This page is at http://site.www.umb.edu/faculty/salzman_g/Strate/Commu/1.htm

Translated by George Salzman    <george.salzman@umb.edu>

   " Perhaps at no moment of our history have the indigenous peoples been at such a historic juncture, in which the analysis of our self-determination was the most certain window to guarantee our survival as peoples, as society. Self-determination has been an eternal dream of our communities. Some, because of geography, and also organizational structure, have succeeded in maintaining a certain margin of this self-determination, which has always resulted in a tense relation with the nation-state".

 

 

 

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