Our intuitions about what constitutes liberty or political freedom
are best captured by the so-called republican conception of
freedom. On this account, freedom is “the secure enjoyment of
non-domination”, i.e. “the absence of any structural dependence on
non-domination comes in degrees: … one is not either free or unfree, but rather more or less free depending on the extent of non-domination one securely enjoys.Ibid.
In political reality, this is translated into a burden of proof for
domination: every form of (partial) domination has to be
legitimised, e.g. democratically by This is close to
’s explication of the core idea of .
In both its conceptualisation and its application, republican freedom is emancipatory. Shifting our understanding from more conventional liberal towards a republican conception is thus a form of Conceptual Engineering in service of Critical Theory.