Appiah Notes on “Identity, Authenticity, Survival”

10 October 2016

If in seeing himself as African American, APPHIAT resists white norms, mainstream American conventions, the racism of white culture, why would he ever seek recognition from others who are white? oIrony in the ways in which this “bohemian ideal” leads authenticity to require us to reject many components of our society. oSecondly, another problem with the bohemian ideal has components of errors of philosophical anthropology. •It fails to see what TAYLOR recognizes as the way in which the self is dialogically constituted. Rhetoric of authenticity suggests not only that you have a way of being that is all your own, but in that developing it, you must fight against the family, organized religion, society, the school, and the state- all of the forces of convention> this point is wrong in that: •It is in dialogue with others understandings of who you are that develops a concept of your own identity, but also because identity is created through concepts and practices made available to a person by religion, society, school, family and the state. Dialogue shapes the identity a person develops as they grow up and what TAYLOR calls “language in a broad sense” oOverall, APPHIAT claims that in every identity, there is a broader context that allows for a space in the other. He claims for example, African American identity is centrally shaped by American Society and its institutions, and it cant be seen as solely constructed within African-American communities. oHe claims a third problem with the standard framing of authenticity if essentialism, which seems inherent in the way questions of authenticity are normally posed.

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After romanticism, the idea that the self is something that one creates so that “every life should be a work of art this is his or her own greatest creation”. Authenticity in politics should not be considered essentialist or monological. ?APPHIAT supposes that TAYLOR is content with the collective identities and this might be why he is less likely to make concessions to them. SLIDE 5- SURVIVAL RUBRIC ?TAYLOR argues that pluralism in societies will require us to modify procedural liberalism.

HE agrees that we should not accept the insistence on the uniform application of rules without exception and the suspicion of collective goals. We should not accept the insistence without the suspicion. There can be legit goals that would give up proceduralism. ?APPAHIAT acknowledges Taylors discussion of collective goals in multicultural states, but moves the focus on to say that the collective goals of society shouldn’t be that the language or practice of a culture is eventually still happening, but that there should be a desire for the language and practice to be moved on from one generation to the next.

EXAMPLE- Canada paying a group of unrelated people on an island in the south pacific to carry on French Canadian culture- this doesn’t meet the need. ?In addition, there needs to be a goal to respecting the autonomy of future individuals. Sometimes children resist to practices that theyre families uphold, such as arranged marriages. In this case, the ethical principles of equal dignity that underlie liberal thinking seem to be against allowing parents to maintain their personal practices because we care about the autonomy of the children. If we create a culture that our descendants will want to hold on to- our culture will survive in them. He says we have to help children make themselves, and we have to do so according to our values because children do not begin with values of their own. He also claims that we must both appeal to and transmit values more substantial that a respect for liberal procedures. oEducation is run by government institutions on purpose for creating collective goals in social reproduction. ?APPHIAT agrees with TAYLORS objections to pure proceduralsim because of social reproduction. SLIDE 6- CONCLUSION Large collective identities that call for recognition come with notions of how a proper person of that kind behaves- there isn’t one way that a group should behave, but there are modes of behavior. These notions provide loose norms and models which play a role in shaping the life of those who make these collective identities central to their individual identities. oCollective identities provide “scripts” which are narratives that people can use in shaping their life plans and stories. oIn telling a persons story, how a person fits into the wider story of various collectivities is important.

Many identities fit each individual story into a larger narrative. oToday, it is widely agreed upon that insults to collective or individual identities are seriously wrong. oEthics of authenticity requires us to express who we really are, they further demands recognition in social life. Because there is no reason to treat people of identities badly, there should be cultural work to resist the stereotypes, to challenge insults, and to lift restrictions. oIn order to construct a life with dignity, take the collective identities and construct positive life scripts instead

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