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Monday, March 17, 2008

Fukuyama on Politics and Human Dignity

Much of politics centers on the question of human dignity and the desire for recognition to which it is related. That is, human beings constantly demand that others recognize their dignity, either as individuals or as members of religious, ethnic, racial, or other kinds of groups. The struggle for recognition is not economic: what we desire is not money but that other human beings respect us in the way we think we deserve. In earlier times, rulers wanted others to recognize their superior worth as king, emperor, or lord. Today, people seek recognition of their equal status as members of formerly disrespected or devalued groups...

-Francis Fukuyama, Our Posthuman Nature: Consequences of the Biotechnology Revolution (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2002), p. 14.

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