1st Edition

The Routledge Handbook of Autonomy

Edited By Ben Colburn Copyright 2023
    488 Pages 2 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    The question of autonomy is fundamental to understanding some of the most important questions and debates in contemporary political and moral life, from freedom of the individual, free will and decision-making to controversies surrounding medical ethics, human rights and the justifications for state intervention. It is also a crucial concept for understanding the development of liberalism.

    The Routledge Handbook of Autonomy is a comprehensive survey and assessment of the key figures, debates and problems surrounding autonomy. Comprising over forty chapters by an international team of contributors, the Handbook is divided into five clear parts:

    • Autonomy through History
    • Foundations of Autonomy
    • Threats to Autonomy
    • The Significance of Autonomy
    • Autonomy in Application.

    Within these sections, all the essential topics are addressed, making The Routledge Handbook of Autonomy an outstanding reference source for those in political philosophy, ethics, applied ethics and philosophy of law. It is also highly recommended reading for those in related subjects, such as politics, social policy and education.

    Introduction Ben Colburn

    Part 1: Autonomy through History

    1. Autonomy in Sophocles’ Antigone Sophie Grace Chappell

    2. Self-sufficiency and Autonomy in Aristotle C. M. M. Olfert

    3. Autonomy and Stoicism Jacob Klein

    4. Kant on Autonomy of the Will Janis D. Schaab

    5. Autonomy after Kant Oliver Sensen

    6. Mary Wollstonecraft and Relational Autonomy Alan Coffee

    7. Mill on Autonomy Christopher Macleod

    8. Pragmatism and Autonomy Matthew Festenstein

    9. Rawls’s Conception of Autonomy Anthony Taylor

    Part 2: Foundations of Autonomy

    10. Autonomy and the Metaphysics of Agency: What’s So Great About Being a Self-governing Agent? Sarah Buss

    11. Doing What Comes Naturally: Autonomy as Liberation Bernard Berofsky

    12. Autonomy, Authenticity, and Free Will Laura W. Ekstrom

    13. Autonomy and Responsibility Lubomira Radoilska

    14. Scaffolding and Autonomy Joel Anderson

    15. Autonomy and Dignity Suzy Killmister

    16. Autonomy and Personal History John Christman

    17. Autonomy and Autobiography: Telling our Stories Andrea Westlund

    18. Autonomy for Changing Selves Richard Pettigrew

    Part 3: Threats to Autonomy

    19. Autonomy and Coercion James Stacey Taylor

    20. Manipulation and Autonomy Christopher Mills

    21. Lying and Autonomy Gerald Dworkin

    22. Autonomy, Oppression, and Feminist Philosophical Methods Serene J. Khader and Emily McGill

    23. Ineffective Intentions: How Oppressive Scripts Undermine Autonomy Natalie Stoljar

    24. Adaptive Preferences as Autonomy Deficits Rosa Terlazzo

    25. Paternalism and Autonomy: Pushing the Limits Sarah Conly

    Part 4: The Significance of Autonomy

    26. Justifying Respect for Personal Autonomy Mark Piper

    27. Autonomy as an Ideal of the Good Steven Wall

    28. Autonomy and Rights Horacio Spector

    29. Autonomy and Capability Lorella Terzi

    30. Autonomy and Justice Rutger Claassen

    31. Gender Autonomy Stephanie Kapusta

    32. Autonomy and Consent Neil C. Manson

    Part 5: Autonomy in Application

    33. Autonomy and Religion: Autonomy and Agency in the Age of Diversity Avigail Eisenberg

    34. Autonomy and Multiculturalism Geoffrey Brahm Levey

    35. Autonomy and Work Andrea Veltman

    36. Autonomy and Free Markets James Stacey Taylor

    37. Children and Autonomy Amy Mullin

    38. Autonomy, Upbringing, and Education Timothy Fowler

    39. Autonomy and Mental Health Hallvard Lillehammer

    40. Autonomy and End-of-Life Bouke De Vries

    41. Assisted Autonomy in Dementia Agnieszka Jaworska.



    Ben Colburn is Professor of Political Philosophy at the University of Glasgow, UK. His main research interests are in political philosophy and ethics, with a particular interest in the nature and value of autonomy and its implication for policy and practice. He is the author of Autonomy and Liberalism (Routledge 2010).

    'This is an invaluable volume, required reading for anyone interested in autonomy, its history as a concept, its applications, and its implications. Carefully planned and edited, with a set of outstanding contributors, not only is it a superb introduction to the debates surrounding autonomy, but it will shape those debates for a long time to come.' - Roger Crisp, University of Oxford, UK

    'The notion of personal autonomy is captivating and perplexing in turn. It has centered on discussions of justice, respect, community, and accountability but has been variously interpreted in these debates. Scholars whose work runs the gamut from Kantian moral theory to contemporary feminist analyses of oppression have claimed the ideal, often in ways that run counter to one another. This volume lends welcome precision to these many faces of autonomy, analyzing its meaning and the conditions for its realization in the many dimensions to which it is put to use.' - Marina Oshana, University of California, Davis, USA

    'Autonomy is widely regarded as a core moral and political value, but philosophers understand it in bewilderingly different ways, and invoke it in a wide range of different contexts. This comprehensive collection both illustrates the variety and helps us see where people are talking past each other. The perfect place to start for anybody wanting to get a grip on this notoriously elusive ideal.' - Adam Swift, University College London, UK