The Limits of Recognition

Angelaki 27 (6):21-30 (2022)
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This essay critiques Rita Felski’s employment of Axel Honneth’s theorisation of “recognition” for a postcritical literary theory and, in turn, Honneth’s own appropriation of recognition from Hegel. In her article “Recognizing Class,” Felski uses Honneth’s concept of recognition to read Didier Eribon’s memoir Returning to Reims, and to argue for the importance of lived experience in analyses of class and its literary representation. This leads her to indict Marxism for its ideal of a classless society. Why should we will the abolition of class when many workers experience their class as a source of pride and belonging? What workers need is not emancipation from their class, but adequate recognition. By drawing upon Gillian Rose’s Hegelian account of recognition, this essay contends that by assuming recognition in advance as an ideal, Felski and Honneth overlook that without emancipation from bourgeois property and class relations, the recognition they presuppose remains an impossibility.



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23 The Politics of Recognition.Charles Taylor - 1994 - Contemporary Political Theory: A Reader.
Écrits.Jacques Lacan - 1967 - Les Etudes Philosophiques 22 (1):96-97.

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