Dysrecognition and social pathology: New directions in critical theory

  • Jon MillsEmail author
Original Article


Contemporary recognition theory overemphasizes the role of rationality in human relations and fails to adequately consider the pathological valences that influence psychological motivation and social dynamics, particularly those that are unconsciously mediated. In offering an alternative Hegelian revisionist perspective, I will examine how capacities for recognition are informed by early developmental contingencies in attachment, self-formation, social relations, and the negation of difference, thereby addressing the psychodynamics of how dysrecognition and refutation of alterity lead to insidious pathologies within society and the clinic. The systemic failure to develop recognition within social collectives is rooted, I suggest, in a lack of empathy for the other.


recognition theory dysrecognition Hegel transgenerational transmission of trauma Axel Honneth prejudice 


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© Springer Nature Limited 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Adler Graduate Professional SchoolTorontoCanada

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