Thomas M. Franck
The Empowered Self: Law and Society in the Age of Individualism examines the gradual emancipation of the individual in national and international law and the changing social attitudes towards personal choice in constituting identity. It demonstrates that this desire of persons for choice is not limited to Western industrial society but a historical development powered by such independent variables as urbanization, the communications revolution, education, and economic development. These factors are changing the way persons affiliate: their attitudes towards nationality, religion, careers, sexuality, and gender roles. In the new climate of personal freedom, individuals increasingly select the components of their identity, choosing one or several from among multiple possible affiliations and questioning-even sometimes rejecting-the imposed or inherited forms of socialization, but despite such resistance, Thomas Franck demonstrates that we are now entering the age of the individual.