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self-respect


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The capacity to bear one's own self-scrutiny. The phrase is Hume's, but self respect is a central concern for ethical theorists working in the Kantian tradition. Self-respect is a good, and is therefore to be distinguished from such neighbours as vanity. It is a platform from which to criticize institutions that undermine it or interrupt its full expression, by making it impossible for some members of a community fully to respect themselves. It is associated in the Kantian tradition with possessing equal rights with others, and with the capacity to see one's actions and patterns of life as consistent with one's own values.

Subjects: Philosophy.


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