[SydPhil] Catriona MacKenzie Dept Seminar Abstract

Brian Hedden brian.hedden at sydney.edu.au
Mon Oct 19 15:05:51 AEDT 2015

Hi all,

Below is the title and abstract for this week's department seminar talk at Sydney Uni by Catriona Mackenzie (Macquarie), Wed 1-2:30pm in the Muniment Room, with tea to follow.

Mary Wollstonecraft: An Early Relational Autonomy Theorist?

In this paper, I argue that Mary Wollstonecraft’s visionary analysis of women’s

oppression, with its structuring contrast between dependence and independence,

prefigures contemporary relational theories of autonomy. In developing this

argument, I distinguish three dimensions of autonomy – self-determination, self-

governance and self-authorization – and show how these map onto Wollstonecraft’s

three-pronged conception of independence as requiring freedom from domination (or

socio-relational equality), rational and moral self-governance, and self-respect. I also

suggest that Wollstonecraft’s thought helps to identify salient points of connection

between relational conceptions of autonomy and neo-republican conceptions of

freedom as non-domination.
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