Authenticity, in this project, is intended to coincide with Buber’s notion of being. Inauthenticity is connected to Buber’s understanding of seeming which “is based upon images of what one wants to be” (Arnett and Arneson 146). Public communication implies community involvement, which carries with it a responsibility to one’s embeddedness through engagement with others in that community. Bok states, “…I must learn to represent to myself the world and the other as you see them” (52).
In this work, the counterpart to authenticity is tolerance. Tolerance of others’ beliefs can lead to moral relativism and close opportunities for conversation. Tolerance, in this project, is directed toward the other and is understood as providing an opportunity for genuine learning without giving up on one’s commitment to a particular narrative. When a disagreement regarding beliefs occurs, an opportunity for dialogue and learning emerges.
Tolerance, in this project, considers the human being in the manner of Benhabib in her discussion of the generalized other in which she states that “there is [a] universalistic commitment to the consideration of every human individual as a being worthy of universal moral respect” (10). In marking the distinction between tolerating other’s beliefs and tolerating the other, a way is provided for permitting one’s deepest commitments to remain primary, permitting more meaningful dialogue to occur in public life.
|Keywords:||Public Communication, Virtues, Authenticity, Tolerance, Ethics|
Assistant Professor, Department of Communication Studies Theatre, and Art, Westminster College, New Wilmington, PA, USA
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