Einheit von einander Verschiedenen – Der Umgang mit asymmetrischer Gerechtigkeit
In: Itinerari, 2016
My contribution focusses on three instances of a shared justice: Reciprocity (in a ‘frontal’ and a ‘lateral’ form, so to speak) to interrogate the social bond which contours such reciprocity, the question of asymmetry as a constitutive instance of justice, and finally trustfulness as prerequisite of an albeit fragile unity of those who differ from each other. Starting with a face-to-face encounter with someone sympathizing with the German movement ‘Pegida’ (German acronym for ‘Patriotic Europeans against the islamization of the occident) where he told me his personal story of his somewhat shaken identity and his mistrust in those who seek refuge in Germany, I will discuss two approaches to understand relationality of oneself to another, i.e. Karl Loewith and Paul Ricoeur. The former concept in its formality hints at probable shortcomings of an ontology of the social which our actual and the former meetings of our group tried to explore by different topics, yet it gives criteria to differentiate various forms of intentionality and its lifeworldly anchorage, especially its communicative aspects. With Ricoeur’s concept of alterity as he develops it in ‘Oneself as an Other’ and ‘the Course of Recognition’ I will examine these shortcomings and develop further the three instances of shared justice mentioned above. For Ricoeur, justice has to be sorted out in the relation to myself, to the other within just institution. This is important to discern both a social and a political (and of the course an economical) sphere from a basic concept of shared intentionality and I-Thou-alterity and to overcome the formality we found in Loewith. Here, the question of the kind of ontology whereby we conceive our being together, becomes crucial. Also crucial is the examination of abilities we always already have and develop in being together by encountering others, of which trust will be seminal. The constitutive function of trust bears a phenomenological dimension which leads Ricoeur to a weak ontology as a framework of shared practices and an ideal of justice emerging from struggles of recognition.
Keywords: Social bond; reciprocity; trust; social ontology.