© 2003

Autonomy, Freedom and Rights

A Critique of Liberal Subjectivity


Part of the Law and Philosophy Library book series (LAPS, volume 65)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-ix
  2. Emilio Santoro
    Pages 1-3
  3. Emilio Santoro
    Pages 4-66
  4. Emilio Santoro
    Pages 67-166
  5. Emilio Santoro
    Pages 254-265
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 266-293

About this book


Autonomy, viewed as a subject's autonomous designing of her own distinctive 'individuality', is not a constitutive problem for liberal theory. Since its earliest formulations, liberalism has taken it for granted that protecting rights is a sufficient guarantee for the primacy of individual subjectivity. The most dangerous legacy of the 'hierarchical-dualist' representation of the subject is the primacy given to reason in defining an individual's identity. For Santoro freedom is not a fixed measure. It is not the container of powers and rights defining an individual's role and identity. It is rather the outcome of a process whereby individuals continuously re-define the shape of their individuality. Freedom is everything that each of us manages to be in his or her active and uncertain opposition to external 'pressures'.


Foucault Immanuel Kant John Rawls Locke Political Science Rousseau Thomas Hobbes anthropology freedom issue justice positivism will

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Department of History and Theory of LawUniversity of FlorenceFlorenceItaly

Bibliographic information

Industry Sectors