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Axel Honneth

Essen (Germany)

Axel Honneth

Philosopher and sociologist

Axel Honneth (1949) is a philosopher and sociologist, director of the Institut für Sozialforschung at Frankfurt University since 2001, Professor of Humanities at Columbia University in the City of New York, and Professor of Social Theory at the Goethe University Frankfurt. A former assistant to Jürgen Habermas, he is presently deemed to be the most eminent figure of the so-called third generation of the Frankfurt School.

His work is concerned with the struggle of the least privileged groups for recognition and social respect, thus aiming to restore the political and social dimensions of philosophy. He has published a dozen books, notable amongst which are:

  • La Sociedad Del Desprecio (The Contempt Society – a compilation of articles translated into Spanish), 2013;Das Recht der Freiheit. Grundriß einer demokratischen Sittlichkeit (2011, published in English as Freedom’s Right: The Social Foundations of Democratic Life);
  • Das Ich im Wir. Studien zur Anerkennungstheorie (2010, published in Englsih as The I in We: Studies in the Theory of Recognition);
  • Disrespect: The Normative Foundations of Critical Theory (published in Spanish as Reconocimiento y menosprecio. Sobre la fundamentación normativa de una teoría social in 2010);
  • Kritik der Macht. Reflexionsstufen einer kritischen Gesellschaftstheorie (1985, published in English as The Critique of Power: Reflective Stages in a Critical Social Theory).

[Last update: February 2015]


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