To be or Not to be Authentic: In Defence of Authenticity as an Ethical Ideal

Katharina Bauer*

*Bijbehorende auteur voor dit werk

OnderzoeksoutputAcademicpeer review

6 Citaten (Scopus)
109 Downloads (Pure)


It has recently been pointed out that the cloudiness of the concept of authenticity as well as inflated ideologies of the 'true self' provide good reasons to criticize theories and ideals of authenticity. Nevertheless, there are also good reasons to defend an ethical ideal of authenticity, not least because of its critical and oppositional force, which is directed against experiences of self-abandonment and self-alienation. I will argue for an elaborated ethical ideal of authenticity: the ambitious ideal of a continuous self-reflective process of 'self-authentication'. For this purpose, the ideal of being authentic in expressing and unfolding one's individual personality and characteristics will be combined with the ideal of being 'an authentic person' - whereby 'a person' is to be understood in a Kantian sense as an autonomous person who is (at least potentially) reasonable and morally responsible.

Originele taal-2English
Pagina's (van-tot)567-580
Aantal pagina's14
TijdschriftEthical Theory and Moral Practice
Nummer van het tijdschrift3
StatusPublished - jun-2017

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