Anti-Authoritarianism as a Liberal Culture: Richard Rorty Between Communitarian and Liberal Criticism

Research output: Contribution to journalResearch articleContributedpeer-review


Abstract In recent years, Rorty's anti-authoritarianism has been repeatedly associated with the loss of truth and a post-factual age. At the same time, Rorty is presented as a strict opponent of such positions. How is it that the same thinker who is held responsible for a postmodern decline is also to be understood as the most severe critic? To answer this question, this paper reconstructs Rorty's anti-authoritarianism as a practice of solidarity by referring to his theory of recognition and virtue of contingency. Subsequently, it can be shown why the accusations of post-facticity and ethnocentrism fall short. On the contrary, because his theory combines different political archetypes, the paper presents Rorty's description of anti-authoritarianism as a social paradigm of contemporary societies.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)170-194
JournalContemporary pragmatism : CP
Issue number9
Early online date1 Aug 2022
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2022

External IDs

Scopus 85135747056
unpaywall 10.1163/18758185-bja10049
WOS 000861176600002


Research priority areas of TU Dresden

ASJC Scopus subject areas


  • anti-authoritarianism, democracy, political faculty, populism, pragmatism, Richard Rorty

Library keywords