Education and struggles for recognition: the strategic role of empowerment

Manuel Gonçalves Barbosa y Ángel García del Dujo

The struggles for recognition, focused on cultural and identity issues until recently, are returning to public arenas in the form of struggles for legal recognition, precisely when we are witnessing, in the context of the post-2008 economic recession, a downward review of citizenship rights, in particular social and labour rights. This article discusses this issue by: first, associating education to the struggles for legal recognition, using the «moral grammar of social conflicts » of Axel Honneth; second, showing how education, connected to empowerment, may have an interesting role in the qualification of social actors involved in these struggles; third, defining the major articulations of this educational role in terms of empowerment. The article concludes by demonstrating the strategic role of empowerment, when promoted by education, in the struggles against the recession of subjective or citizenship rights.