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Normative Recursion : on Recursive Grounding and the Capacity for Radical Critique in Formal Pragmatics, Recognition, Social Freedom and Justification

Strandgaard, Jakob LU (2021) In Lund Political Studies 1(202).
Abstract
This thesis explores the meta-ethical question: What properties would be required of a normative critical concept in order for it to be (a) derived from the social facticity of prevailing norms, practices and institutions in a given society and (b) still be capable of informing radical critique? This thesis takes radical critique to mean one that escapes all charges of status quo biases and thus truly transcends the immanent content of the norms, practices and institutions from which it was derived.

This thesis asserts that the necessary property of such a concept is recursion. That is, the property of a self-referentiality that allows for something to hierarchically contain copies of itself. The idea of finding the property of... (More)
This thesis explores the meta-ethical question: What properties would be required of a normative critical concept in order for it to be (a) derived from the social facticity of prevailing norms, practices and institutions in a given society and (b) still be capable of informing radical critique? This thesis takes radical critique to mean one that escapes all charges of status quo biases and thus truly transcends the immanent content of the norms, practices and institutions from which it was derived.

This thesis asserts that the necessary property of such a concept is recursion. That is, the property of a self-referentiality that allows for something to hierarchically contain copies of itself. The idea of finding the property of recursion in normative political theory and defending its utility is undertheorized in the political theory literature. By locating the property of recursion in the formal pragmatics of Jürgen Habermas, in Axel Honneth’s concepts of recognition and social freedom and in Rainer Forst’s concept of justification, this thesis remedies this situation. In doing so, a space is carved out for normative political theory between foundationalism and anti-foundationalism and between the utopian and realist approach.
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Abstract (Swedish)
Denna avhandling utforskar den meta-etiska frågan: Vilka egenskaper krävs av ett normativt kritiskt begrepp så att det både kan (a) härledas från den sociala faktiska verkligheten av gällande normer, praktiker och institutioner i ett givet samhälle och (b) vara utgångpunkt för radikal kritik? Radikal kritik förstås i avhandlingen som en kritik bortom anklagelser om partiskhet gentemot det rådande. Den radikala kritiken förmår således överskrida det inneboende innehållet i normer, praktiker och institutioner från vilka den är härledd.

Avhandlingen hävdar att den nödvändiga egenskapen för ett sådant begrepp är rekursion. Det vill säga en själv-refererande egenskap som hierarkiskt förmår innehålla kopior av sig själv. Idén att... (More)
Denna avhandling utforskar den meta-etiska frågan: Vilka egenskaper krävs av ett normativt kritiskt begrepp så att det både kan (a) härledas från den sociala faktiska verkligheten av gällande normer, praktiker och institutioner i ett givet samhälle och (b) vara utgångpunkt för radikal kritik? Radikal kritik förstås i avhandlingen som en kritik bortom anklagelser om partiskhet gentemot det rådande. Den radikala kritiken förmår således överskrida det inneboende innehållet i normer, praktiker och institutioner från vilka den är härledd.

Avhandlingen hävdar att den nödvändiga egenskapen för ett sådant begrepp är rekursion. Det vill säga en själv-refererande egenskap som hierarkiskt förmår innehålla kopior av sig själv. Idén att lokalisera egenskapen rekursion i normativ politisk teori, och försvara dess användning, är underteoretiserade i den politisk-teoretiska litteraturen. Genom att lokalisera egenskapen rekursion i Jürgen Habermas formella pragmatik, i Axel Honneths begrepp erkännande och social frihet och i Rainer Forsts rättfärdigandebegrepp, hjälper avhandlingen fylla denna lucka i litteraturen. Därmed skapas ett utrymme i normativ politisk teori mellan foundationalism och anti-foundationalism liksom mellan en utopisk och realistisk utgångspunkt. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
supervisor
opponent
  • Professor Tönder, Lars, University of Copenhagen
organization
publishing date
type
Thesis
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Formal Pragmatics, Recognition, Social Freedom, Justification, Recursion, Normative Validity Surplus, Critique, Reconstruction, Normative Foundations, Jürgen Habermas, Axel Honneth, Rainer Forst
in
Lund Political Studies
volume
1
issue
202
edition
1st
pages
255 pages
publisher
Lund University
defense location
Online, LU Zoom meeting: https://lu-se.zoom.us/j/69296771864
defense date
2021-05-21 13:15:00
ISSN
0460-0037
0460-0037
ISBN
978-91-7895-840-5
978-91-7895-839-9
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
97c41a7c-00d9-401a-8a78-dc0e31a14cc1
date added to LUP
2021-04-23 12:45:02
date last changed
2021-05-07 09:54:13
@phdthesis{97c41a7c-00d9-401a-8a78-dc0e31a14cc1,
  abstract     = {This thesis explores the meta-ethical question: What properties would be required of a normative critical concept in order for it to be (a) derived from the social facticity of prevailing norms, practices and institutions in a given society and (b) still be capable of informing radical critique? This thesis takes radical critique to mean one that escapes all charges of status quo biases and thus truly transcends the immanent content of the norms, practices and institutions from which it was derived.<br/><br/>This thesis asserts that the necessary property of such a concept is recursion. That is, the property of a self-referentiality that allows for something to hierarchically contain copies of itself. The idea of finding the property of recursion in normative political theory and defending its utility is undertheorized in the political theory literature. By locating the property of recursion in the formal pragmatics of Jürgen Habermas, in Axel Honneth’s concepts of recognition and social freedom and in Rainer Forst’s concept of justification, this thesis remedies this situation. In doing so, a space is carved out for normative political theory between foundationalism and anti-foundationalism and between the utopian and realist approach.<br/>},
  author       = {Strandgaard, Jakob},
  isbn         = {978-91-7895-840-5},
  issn         = {0460-0037},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {04},
  number       = {202},
  publisher    = {Lund University},
  school       = {Lund University},
  series       = {Lund Political Studies},
  title        = {Normative Recursion : on Recursive Grounding and the Capacity for Radical Critique in Formal Pragmatics, Recognition, Social Freedom and Justification},
  url          = {https://lup.lub.lu.se/search/ws/files/97023809/Normative_Recursion_Jakob_Strangaard.pdf},
  volume       = {1},
  year         = {2021},
}