Dignity, Choice, and Circumstances

Christopher McCrudden ed., Understanding Human Dignity, Proceedings of the British Academy/Oxford University Press, 2013, Forthcoming

16 Pages Posted: 27 Aug 2013

See all articles by Denise G. Reaume

Denise G. Reaume

University of Toronto - Faculty of Law

Date Written: 2013

Abstract

Dignity is at least in part about choice, choices about the character and direction of one’s life. However, many do not enjoy autonomy-fostering circumstances and yet must still make choices. Such choices and the circumstances shaping them are often the context of social and economic rights contests in a wide array of concrete legal contexts. All too often, state actors, including judges, take the easy way out in resolving such contests — ratifying the choices made by desperate people as though they were autonomous and free. In doing so, they sometimes claim to be respecting the dignity of those whose choices they validate. This chapter offers a critique of simple invocations of choice in the name of dignity and argues for the need for a more complex understanding of the autonomy dimension of human dignity.

Keywords: Autonomy, Circumstances of Choice, Dignity and Choice

Suggested Citation

Reaume, Denise G., Dignity, Choice, and Circumstances (2013). Christopher McCrudden ed., Understanding Human Dignity, Proceedings of the British Academy/Oxford University Press, 2013, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2315177

Denise G. Reaume (Contact Author)

University of Toronto - Faculty of Law ( email )

78 Queen's Park
Toronto, Ontario M5S 2C5
Canada
514-398-6694 (Phone)

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
202
Abstract Views
796
rank
149,448
PlumX Metrics