Self-Stigma, Bad Faith and the Experiential Self

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The concept of self-stigmatization is guided by a representational account of selfhood that fails to accommodate for resilience against, and recovery from, stigma. Mainstream research on self-stigma has portrayed it only as a reified self, that is, as collectively shared stereotypes representing individuals’ identity. Self-stigma viewed phenomenologically, however, elucidates what facilitates a stigmatized self. A phenomenological analysis discloses the lived phenomenon of stigma as an act of self-objectification, as related to the experiential self, and therefore an achievement of subjectivity. Following a phenomenological account, the stigmatized self can thus return to a state-of-being, similar to that Jean-Paul Sartre once referred to as bad faith. Regarding your identity as analogous to an inanimate thing is ultimately self-deceptive. Self-stigma is here phenomenologically illuminated as constituted by basic discretion, that is, as a minimal form of agency. The study found that basic discretion can uphold the possibility for emancipation from a stigmatized self.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)391-405
JournalHuman Studies: A Journal for Philosophy and the Social Sciences
Early online date2019 Apr 23
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Philosophy

Free keywords

  • Bad faith
  • Experiential self
  • Internalization
  • Phenomenology
  • Representationalism
  • Self-stigma


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