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Title: Autonomy In and Between Polities: A Political Philosophy of Modernity
Author: Rosich Pagès, Gerard
Director/Tutor: Birulés, Fina
Wagner, Peter, 1956 setembre 18-
Keywords: Modernitat
Issue Date: 9-Dec-2015
Publisher: Universitat de Barcelona
Abstract: [eng] This PhD has pursued three different and interconnected objectives, each corresponding to one of the three parts of the PhD. In Part I, a historical reconstruction is provided in order to present the background against which some political paradoxes in the present have to be understood in relation to globalization. On the one hand, it presents a range of historical developments that have helped to describe some lineaments of the modern world as a history of domination that underpins the univocal and reductionist conceptual association between modernity and globalization. A connection is established between this view of modernity and imperialism, and between progress and globalization. On the other hand, it discusses the conceptual shortcomings and historical inadequacy of this understanding of modernity against the background of recent findings and offers an interpretation of modernity as being constituted by a tension between a totalizing and a pluralizing interpretation of the world. An alternative pluralizing interpretation of modernity, which is not related to globalization, linked to the concept of autonomy and is best suited to understanding our current condition, is proposed. Part II aims, first, at challenging the narrative of the current hegemony of the liberal understanding of autonomy which underpins political globalization and makes unworkable any notion of a collective self; and second, at retrieving philosophically the normative content with which the concept of autonomy is associated. An assessment of the current global situation is offered which aims at showing the need for the construction of a bounded collective self in order to uphold democracy and challenge the modes of domination that contract theory, as a normative framework for institutional social life, perpetuates by means of legitimation or obfuscation. Part III establishes the historical context in which the views offered in parts I and II have been elaborated. First, a conceptual history of autonomy is provided. To my knowledge, no exhaustive and systematic history of the concept has been researched in scholarship. It has been taken for granted that Immanuel Kant is the inventor of the concept in its modern use, a view reinforced through the impressive work of Jerome B. Schneewind. Allegedly, Kant’s work opens the path to the constitution of individual autonomy as the basic understanding of freedom. In contrast to this understanding, the aim of Part III is to show that in conceptual and in historical terms, autonomy (re)emerges in modernity after its invention in classical Greece as a political concept and as a defining quality of the collective self in its relation with the political Other. At the same time, this part aims at retrieving and grounding historically an alternative interpretation of modernity that challenges the hegemonic and univocal understanding of modernity that has been analysed in Part I. It analyses the different movements of reformation that took place during the first half of the 16th century in the Holy Roman Empire, which culminated in the 1555 Peace of Augsburg, as the experiences under which the concept of autonomy was reintroduced into European modernity. It shows that at the moment when European imperialism was beginning with the “discovery of America”, alternative interpretations and experiences were already at hand, which aimed at challenging precisely this notion of imperialism. Part III thereby grounds in historico-conceptual terms the interpretation of modernity offered in Part I and the assessment of autonomy offered in Part II.
[cat] La primera part de la tesi fa un esforç per comprendre el nostre present i les tensions que el constitueixen a través d'una reconstrucció tant històrico-interpretativa i discuteix fonamentalment les teories d'arrel eurocèntrica. Tot i que hi ha raonament teòric, la forma de procedir i argumentar és fonamentalment històrica. Seguint aquest fil, analitzo un seguit de canvis històrics que permeten llegir certs desenvolupaments del món modern com una història de dominació i que, a parer meu, està a la base de l'associació conceptual reduccionista i unívoca entre modernitat i globalització. Des d'aquest angle, estableixo una connexió entre modernitat i imperialisme i entre progrés i globalització per fer-ne la crítica, i proposo una interpretació de la modernitat constituïda per la tensió entre una comprensió totalitzadora o pluralitzadora de món. La segona part de la tesi és predominantment conceptual, encara que es complementa en alguns casos amb observacions històriques. Hi presento l'aproximació interpretativa del concepte d'autonomia i poso en qüestió el seu ús dominant en el present. És en aquest part on s'introdueix i es desenvolupa la filosofia política de la modernitat que correspon a les anàlisis històriques del llibre i on es discuteixen les connexions entre exclusió, dominació i democràcia. La darrera part combina enfocaments històrics, contextuals, interpretatius i conceptuals per poder copsar totes les diverses variables que es posen en joc en la relació entre modernitat i autonomia. És en aquesta part on la història conceptual de l'autonomia és desenvolupada i que té com a objectiu no reduir els fonaments polítics de la modernitat al concepte de sobirania. S'analitzen els diversos moviments de reforma que van tenir lloc durant la primera meitat del segle XVI al Sacre Imperi Romanogermànic i que van culminar l'any 1555 amb la Pau d'Augsburg. Aquest és el rerefons on el concepte d'autonomia es reintrodueix i l'analitzo com un dels conceptes que mostraven en aquell moment la transició d'Europa a la seva època moderna. En contrast, suggereixo que just en el moment en què l'imperialisme global Europeu s'iniciava amb la 'descoberta d'Amèrica', ja estaven en joc interpretacions i experiències alternatives que qüestionaven el concepte de sobirania.
Appears in Collections:Tesis Doctorals - Departament - Història de la Filosofia, Estètica i Filosofia de la Cultura

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