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Kenneth Baynes

Kenneth Baynes

Kenneth Baynes

Professor Emeritus


300 Hall of Languages


Ethics [ILM]
Political Philosophy


Social/Academic Links

Research and Teaching Interests

Ken Baynes works primarily in social and political philosophy, with a special focus in critical theory (the "Frankfurt School") and modern and contemporary German philosophy. He is a co-editor of After Philosophy: End or Transformation? (MIT Press), and Discourse and Democracy (SUNY Press), and the author of The Normative Grounds of Social Criticism: Kant, Rawls and Habermas (SUNY Press). His current interests are in the normative or obligatory character of rules and practices, attempts to ground moral principles in practical reason, and the relationship between democracy and basic rights, including "multicultural rights" (if indeed there are any!). You can find many of his papers at his site on, here.


“Rawls and Critical Theory,” in A Companion to Rawls, ed.

by Jon Mandle and David Reidy, (Blackwell, forthcoming, 2012)

“Morality and Critical Theory,” in International Encyclopedia of Ethics, ed. by H.

Lafollette (forthcoming 2012)

“Making Global Governance Public,” in Territories of Citizenship, ed. by E. Erman and

L. Beckman (New York: Palgrave MacMillan, 2012), 123-145.

“Self, Narrative and Self-Constitution: Revisiting Taylor’s Self-Interpreting Animals,”

The Philosophical Forum (December 2010), 441-457

“Deliberative Democracy and Public Reason,” Veritas 55 (2010), 135-163

“Discourse Ethics and the Political Conception of Human Rights,” Ethics and Global

Politics 2.1 (2009), 1-21.

“Toward a Political Conception of Human Rights,” Philosophy and Social Criticism 35

(2009), 371-390.

“Democratic Equality and Respect,” Theoria 117 (December 2008), 1-25.

“The Hermeneutics of ‘Situated Cosmopolitanism’,” Philosophy and Social Criticism

33 (2007), 301-08

“’Gadamerian Platitudes’ and Rational Interpretations,” Philosophy and Social Criticism

33 (2007), 65-80

“Ethos and Institution: On the Site of Distributive Justice” The Journal of Social

Philosophy 37 (2006), 184-198.

“Understanding Evil” (Review Essay), Constellations 11 (2004), 434-444.

“Freedom and Recognition in Hegel and Habermas”, Philosophy and Social Criticism 28

(2002), 1-17.

"Rights as Critique and the Critique of Rights: Karl Marx, Wendy Brown and the Social

Function of Rights," Political Theory 28 (2000), 451-468.

Kenneth Baynes Appointed Tolley Professor in Humanities

(April 25, 2016)

Social, political philosopher will use professorship to address theme of ‘Identity/Identities’

Syracuse Philosopher Publishes Book on Jürgen Habermas

(Oct. 14, 2015)

Kenneth Baynes explores life, work of renowned German philosopher