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Individuals achieve personal autonomy to the degree that how they live must be explained as their own self-government. Personal autonomy is modeled on the self-government of the state, and the most conspicuous failures to achieve it are closely akin to failures of political autonomy. Those who live in fearful or unthinking conformity to the will of others fail to achieve personal autonomy, as do people who habitually succumb to inner drives they cannot control. The former condition is analogous to the state whose independence is subverted by some intimidating neighbor or colonial invader; the latter parallels the state that loses control to rebels within its own borders. An education for personal autonomy entails learning whatever enables human beings to achieve a valued state of individual ...

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