Hegel’s Idea of Freedom

The book offers the first full‐length treatment in English of Hegel’s idea of freedom. It explores his theory of what it is for an individual to be free and his account of the social and political contexts in which freedom is developed, realized, and sustained. The book investigates a number of central questions concerning Hegel’s ethics and political theory. Is Hegel’s outlook unacceptably conservative? Can freedom be equated with rational self‐determination?

Is there any special connection between freedom and citizenship? By offering interpretations of Hegel’s views on these and other questions, the book develops a novel ‘civic humanist’ reading of Hegel’s social philosophy, one that restores to its proper, central place Hegel’s idea of freedom. The book is written in a clear and jargon‐free style and will be of interest to anyone concerned with Hegel’s ethical, social, and political thought and the sources of contemporary ideas about freedom, community, and the state.

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