The aim of this chapter is to apply the analytic apparatus developed in Brennan and Pettit (The Economy of Esteem: An Essay on Civil and Political Society. Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2004) for the case of social esteem to the case of self-esteem. The thought is that whereas the standard social case involves actor and observer being different persons, in the self-esteem case the actor and the observer are the same person. Attention is thereby directed to the distinctive features of the actor as an observer of her own ‘performance’ in relevant esteem domains. This ‘reflective’ case raises some interesting questions not just about self-esteem but also about aspects of social esteem that might otherwise be overlooked. On the other hand, the nature of the esteem relation is distinguished from other reflexive attitudes with which it might be confused.
- Bandura, A. 1989. Social Cognitive Theory. In Annals of Child Development, Six Theories of Child Development, ed. R. Vasta, vol. 6, 1–60. Greenwich: JAI Press.Google Scholar
- Lovejoy, A.O. 1961. Reflections on Human Nature. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.Google Scholar
- Young, E. 1968. The Complete Works. Vol. 1. Hildesheim: Georg Olms.Google Scholar