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Honor, History, and RelationshipEssays in Second-Personal Ethics II$
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Stephen Darwall

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199662609

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199662609.001.0001

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Fichte and the Second-Person Standpoint

Fichte and the Second-Person Standpoint

(p.222) 10 Fichte and the Second-Person Standpoint
Honor, History, and Relationship

Stephen Darwall

Oxford University Press

Johann Gottlieb Fichte's Foundations of Natural Right have only recently begun to receive the attention they deserve from Anglophone historians of ethical and political thought. This chapter explores a central insight Fichte develops in this work, which also plays a significant role in the argument of SPS. (What is there called ‘Fichte's Point’.) Fichte argues that it takes a second-personal Auffordering (or ‘summons’), addressed from one free and rational agent to another, for the addressee to gain a practical consciousness of his own free will. Moreover, Fichte holds that right and law are grounded in this essentially second-personal phenomenon. Through the address and acknowledgment of a summons, summoner and summoned are committed to a reciprocal recognition (Anerkennung) of their shared authority as free rational beings to demand a sphere of freedom of action, which grounds both right and law.

Keywords:   Fichte, second-personal, right, summons, free

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