Chapter

A Civic Humanist Idea of Freedom

Alan Patten

in Hegel's Idea of Freedom

Published in print March 2002 | ISBN: 9780199251568
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191598180 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0199251568.003.0006
 A Civic Humanist Idea of Freedom

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Explores and partially defends Hegel's claim that freedom is most fully realized through membership in the modern state. It contrasts Hegel's ‘civic humanist’ understanding of this claim with the social contract theory's view of the relationship between freedom and the state. The chapter also argues against those commentators (e.g. Isaiah Berlin and Allen Wood) who see something sinister in the Hegelian association of freedom with the state. In developing its interpretation, the chapter considers Hegel's distinction between state and civil society and it offers an overview of the basic structure of Hegel's main work of political philosophy—the Philosophy of Right.

Keywords: civic humanism; civil society; freedom; Hegel; humanism; Philosophy of Right; social contract; state

Chapter.  16745 words. 

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

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